We talk about green beauty nearly every week here, yet I’ve never told you how I found it in the first place. It’s no secret that I love nontoxic makeup and skincare, but until about four years ago I didn’t even know it existed. It all started with a series of painful reactions on my face. Though it wasn’t much fun, it changed my makeup bag forever.
My skin was just fine until I was about 17. Chapped lips turned into seriously chapped lips, which turned into red irritated skin all around my mouth. It wasn’t so cute and I was really self conscious of this sudden redness. Not to mention, it hurt. No moisturizer did the trick and sometimes made it worse, so finally I saw a dermatologist, who gave me a topical steroid. I can’t recall how long it took to heal or what finally helped, but it was no overnight process.
Just when that had been solved, I tried a new moisturizer that was supposedly suitable for sensitive skin. Well, it wasn’t. My skin quickly became textured and inflamed. Looking back, it could have been contact dermatitis. Luckily, it didn’t take long for my face to calm down, but it left me wondering why my skin was so easily affected by products.
I became skincare obsessed. I actually developed a true interest in product formulation and even briefly majored in chemistry in college, thinking I would pursue it as a career. So yeah, like I said- a little obsessed. I researched what key ingredients to look for, what the common irritants were, and learned to decipher to the lengthy list of ingredients on the backs of bottles. Already deep in my search, I discovered some concerning information. Perhaps what we’re putting on our faces isn’t good for our skin and maybe it’s not even safe.
Of course, I was not okay with that, but I had no idea where to start. I started looking for natural products and reviews and slowly swapped conventional products for cleaner ones. This can be an intimidating process, but it’s easier than you think.
Tips for Transitioning to Green Beauty
Go slow. It’s often not feasible to change everything at once and that’s okay. A lot of people replace products when they run out and it worked for me too. What you first replace is up to you, but I recommend immediately switching to organic pads or tampons or a menstrual cup. I didn’t think about what was lurking in my tampons until this year and I don’t want other ladies to go as long as I did. They aren’t much more expensive and you can probably find them in a local convenience or grocery store.
It doesn’t have to be expensive. Yes, you are often paying a bit more for quality, but not everything is pricey. There are lots of great brands with lower price points. Leven Rose, Acure Organics, Silk Naturals are three of my favorite budget friendly brands.
Don’t be discouraged by one bad product. Sometimes products just don’t work out, but that doesn’t mean all green beauty is bad. Before buying, read or watch reviews and check the return policy. I never buy makeup without seeing what others have to say about it. Let the bloggers/reviewers do the work for you and when in doubt, order a sample!
Look to the people who have done it before. When you really don’t know where to start, find the people who know green beauty inside and out. The community is always growing and there are a ton of resources online. Also, don’t hesitate to ask questions. That includes asking me questions! I’m happy to help point you in the right direction.
I know a lot of you are already green beauty enthusiasts, so what made you switch? I’d love to hear your stories. For those just getting into it, you’re already on your way.