After posting on the best natural scents, I was asked to put together some recommendations for clean and natural beauty care products. As we discussed before, the skin is an incredible absorber – whatever you put on your body ultimately ends up in your body.. and most skin care products are full of toxic gunk you would never knowingly ingest.
Take a look at this great infographic I found online – it breaks down some of the most dangerous ingredients in your beauty products and explains why they’re so awful (click to enlarge):
Unfortunately, a lot of the “green” or “organic” products out there are using these words in the name of their product or brand to make you think they’re clean when they may have some icky ingredients. It’s really important to read labels and steer clear from the ingredients listed above.
So, what’s a beauty conscious babe to do? Check out some of the following companies and my personal clean, natural skin care regime. I try to buy local whenever possible, but sometimes I’ll opt for out of province products if I love the formulation. Here’s what I’m currently using on my skin:
Sukin – Foaming Facial Cleanser
Sukin is an Australian company, but it’s easy to find their products in health food stores across the city. Their products are free of toxic ingredients, and they have a great sustainability program. They’re cruelty free, use recycled packaging, and are a 100% carbon neutral company. Not only that – but this cleanser is fantastic! Unlike many sulphate-free cleansers, this actually produces a foam and leaves my skin feeling really pure. I use it in the morning and evening, and have had no trouble with irritation (my skin is somewhat sensitive).
Matter Company – Neroli Water Facial Mist with Calendula and Chamomile
All of the products from Matter Company are wonderfully clean, environmentally sustainable herbal preparations that are crafted here in Toronto! This toner feels fantastic on my skin, is slightly astringent but doesn’t aggravate my dry spots, and leaves my face feeling fresh and dewy.
Crawford Street Skin Care – Repairing Facial Oil
For the spring, summer and fall months, I find that all I need to moisturize is a nice facial oil – when we get into the deep winter months, I usually combine my oil with a thicker moisturizer to ward off wind burn. This is hands down the best facial oil I’ve tried to date. Crawford Street products are made here in Toronto – the company was started in 2010 when their founder had a severe allergic reaction to a commercial product. The repairing facial oil’s base is a mix of avocado, jojoba, rosehip and argan oils, is rich in antioxidants and essential fatty acids, and combines six essential oils for a beautiful scent and anti-aging action.
Pure+simple – Sensitive Skin Exfoliant + Face Mask
Another Canadian company, Pure+simple has a few locations across Toronto where they offer beauty services and sell skin care products that are natural and free of toxins. Their store brand exfoliant and face mask is a great weekly treatment – it gently cleans my pores with jojoba beads, hydrates and soothes, leaving my face and neck feeling squeaky clean.
Malin+Goetz – Eucalyptus Deodorant
Malin+Goetz is an American company from New York, ‘using the purest natural ingredients combined with modern science to produce the best non-irritating natural products.’ Once I finish my Tom’s, I’ll be buying their eucalyptus stick next (note: I mentioned I was using Nivea Pure deodorant before – and although it is free of aluminum, it contains propylene glycol and some other nasties. Consider it tossed.). The active ingredient in M+G’s product is citronellyl methylcrotonate, which according to EWG’s Skin Deep database is an ester of Citronell and has a hazard rating of 1/10 (scale is 0-2: low hazard).
Matter Company – Outdoors Hand Cream
This is an incredible intensive moisturizing hand lotion for overworked hands. Bonus is it smells like a walk in the woods.. and again it’s made by a great local company with fantastic herbal ingredients and a base of shea butter, olive and avocado oils and vitamin E.
Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
I can’t replace this in my clean beauty regime – I use it on my face for dry spots or as a facial moisturizer in winter, on my elbows/knees/all-other-body-areas that need some TLC, even on the ends of my hair when it’s feeling a bit dry. It smells great, and you don’t have to worry about additives or toxins. I keep the jar in my kitchen for cooking, and a tiny portion in my bathroom cabinet. Raise your right hand and repeat: I’m a coco-aholic.
One last company I want to mention is Province Apothecary – this Toronto-based company (founded in 2010) creates clean skin care products, provides services, and has an impressive line of perfumes. I have yet to purchase, but have heard raving reviews of their products and scents and will be a customer in the near future!
What are your favourite clean beauty products?