7 Tips for Buying Eco-friendly Makeup ...


Eco-friendly makeup is a hot topic these days, with women everywhere becoming more aware of the ingredients in their beauty products. Since 64% of what you put on your skin goes directly to your bloodstream (shocking, right?), it's important that you're careful what you put on that precious, pretty canvas. Investing in some eco-friendly makeup is a great place to start! Here are 7 tips for buying eco-friendly makeup!

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Research, Research, Research

If that sounds about as appealing as a calculus exam, don't sweat it. This research isn't as intensive as you might think. It involves some simple Googling - and let's be honest, you're surfing anyway! May as well learn something while you're at it. It can be a little confusing to define, but it boils down to this: eco-friendly makeup is makeup that is gentle on you and the environment. You want to figure out what ingredients to avoid, and what brands provide eco-friendly makeup. Some helpful resources:
 The Environmental Working Group's Skindeep Database is a comprehensive and simple search tool. You can enter an ingredient, brand or product and find out its implications, with a toxicity score from 0-10, and a breakdown of the concerns. Also, David Suzuki's Dirty Dozen (12 cosmetic ingredients to avoid) offers detailed explanations on the top 12 toxins to say; "So long" to, and why. And last, Think Dirty is an innovative smartphone app that allows you to scan products as you shop, giving you a rundown on the safety or "cleanliness" of the products you're considering for purchase.


Identify Your Needs

Are you a mascara freak? A foundation fanatic? A lipstick lover? Or all of the above? Either way, you'll want to take stock of the makeup you have, and use most often, and find eco-friendly alternatives that measure up. Find as many eco-friendly makeup companies as you can, and take a look at their selection. Some specialize in lip products, while others offer a large range of foundation and blush. Do you prefer creams, powders or liquids? Pressed shadows or loose? The options can be overwhelming, so before you begin your quest for eco-friendly makeup, it's a good idea to have a plan.


Avoid Greenwashing

Don't be fooled by buzzwords like "organic", "natural" and "eco-friendly" on the front of the package. These are loosely-defined terms, and many brands use them on their packaging to reel you and your money in, without actually walking the walk. The one and only way to determine whether a product is truly non-toxic is to read and understand the ingredients. And you're ahead of the game, because you passed step one with flying colors, you smart girl!


Meet the Maker

You'll find that many eco-friendly makeup brands are run by women, most of them with passionate stories of being fed up with the toxins they found in their own makeup and creating change by starting their own businesses. Don't be afraid to reach out to the brands by shooting them an email with questions. Every time I've contacted an eco-friendly makeup brand (independent or otherwise), I've been met with an enthusiastic, helpful response. Brands that make truly eco-friendly makeup are interested in and engaged with their customers, and are always happy to help. In my experience, I've never felt pushed towards a product, but have always been made to feel like my skin-type and needs truly matter. Asking questions is how you learn, so start the conversation!


Try before You Buy

One of the coolest things about eco-friendly makeup brands is that most of them offer affordable sample programs, so that you can try, test, and fall in love (or not) before you commit. Amazing, right? Plus, most of the time the sample sizes are generous (more than enough for several applications), so you can get to know the feel and colour of the product. If you don't see a sample section on the website of a brand that you think you'll love, revisit step four and reach out!


Get Local!

While there are tons (and I mean tons) of options for eco-friendly makeup online, you may be surprised to find a beautiful selection in your own backyard! Check out your local health food stores, farmers markets, and sometimes even drugstores and scan the shelves for eco-friendly cosmetics. No waiting for packages and no shipping charges? Yes, please!


Pick Eco-friendly Packaging

Try to find eco-friendly makeup brands that take it one step further than nontoxic ingredients by bringing their philosophy into the packaging. Glass bottles, or at least plastic ones that are re-usable, and compacts that accommodate refills (so you only have to buy the packaging once) are all good choices. The more creative you can get with re-usable packaging, and the less waste you create with it, the better!

Do you already have some eco-friendly makeup? What are YOUR favorites?

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Also most health food stores have organic or natural makeup brands. Even some drugstores in Europe offer fairly natural products!

The most important to me is Green Washing! All your tips are absolutely correct.. At the moment I'm testing out The All Natural Face foundation, and I'm liking it. Do you know of a website that has a list of brands and tells you if they are good or not?

Hi Sara, there's the EWG and the other resources mentioned in the article, and there is also MakeupAlley, which is a bunch of reviews under one roof. Beautylish is also good! However, sometimes it's harder to find reviews on indie or lesser known brands, so a good place to try is Etsy, if they have a shop. All shops have visible reviews from real customers there!

Environmental working group also has a skin deep app now!

I like origins and bare minerals!

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