What’s all the hype about natural makeup?
If you don’t think much about the makeup products you use, you might be wondering why so many women seek out great natural products—and sometimes pay high prices for the limited selection they find.
Here’s the short answer:
When you choose your skincare and makeup products wisely, you limit your exposure to ingredients that could have an adverse effect on your long-term health. Natural makeup products work with your body’s ability to heal, moisturize, and look beautiful; they don’t rely on harsh, abrasive chemicals to achieve an artificial result.
Let’s look at why some of the traditional ingredients in makeup products are so harmful, and why the natural alternatives are a much safer choice.
You would not intentionally ingest harmful chemicals. Yet many commercial makeup and skincare products contain chemicals that might cause long-term damage to your body.
Your skin is far more than just a barrier between your organs and the outside world. It’s actually an organ in itself! And one of your skin’s functions is to allow substances to pass through the barrier and enter or exit your body.
That means topical applications of skincare and makeup products don’t always remain just on your skin’s surface. They may permeate your skin and enter your bloodstream, which could be dangerous.
One such chemical is oxybenzone. It’s a sun-blocking agent that is often added to foundations and bronzers with an SPF rating. Oxybenzone is a known endocrine disruptor and may be especially harmful to children and pregnant women. It stays in the bloodstream weeks after the last use of the product and it can be passed along to nursing babies via breast milk.
Some other potentially harmful substances commonly found in makeup and skincare products include parabens, phthalates, and artificial fragrances. Breast Cancer Prevention Partners warns women to check product labels for these ingredients because they have the potential to cause problems.
Even if chemicals don’t have the potential to produce health-related problems, you could be damaging your skin by introducing allergens or harsh, abrasive ingredients that strip your skin of its natural moisture and defenses. If you’ve ever used a makeup or skincare product that left your skin feeling dry, red, and sensitive, or if you’ve used mascaras that make your lashes feel dry and brittle, they probably contained these types of chemicals.
The good news is that you can minimize your exposure to these substances by choosing natural products that don’t contain them.
“Natural” doesn’t always mean “healthy.” After all, arsenic and lead are natural, but you wouldn’t apply products with these ingredients onto your skin. Even if a product is labeled as natural or organic, you need discernment and keep track of ingredients that you don’t want to use.
The good news is that Abbey St Clare has already done much of the legwork for you in sourcing beneficial ingredients—and developing products that don’t contain anything harmful. If you’re on the lookout for natural makeup, you might be able to find exactly what you’re looking for here.
Here are some of our favorite products with ingredients that can give your skin the glow that comes from health, not from something artificial.
Lash care with peptides
Peptides are useful in skincare products precisely because they easily absorb through the skin. Once they enter your cells, they can help your skin heal at a deeper level than most skincare ingredients ever could hope to achieve.
Interestingly, peptides are also useful for growing thick, luxurious eyelashes! That’s why we’ve included them in our moisturizing Lash Thickener and Conditioner. Use this rich, Vitamin E-enhanced formula in conjunction with Enhance+ Volumizing Mascara that contains shea butter and botanical oils. With regular use—and after switching away from traditional, drying mascaras—you’ll get positive benefits in your eyelash health.
Beautiful colors without fillers and preservatives
You may believe that it’s impossible to find any skincare products without preservatives such as parabens. It seems that parabens—another potential endocrine disruptor that may affect hormones, fertility, and pregnancy outcomes—are everywhere.
So when you find a great eyeshadow, concealer, lipstick, or blush without paraben-based preservatives, you can have the confidence that using these products will help you and not potentially harm you.
Additionally, look for products that use natural minerals as pigment rather than artificial coloring agents. Not only do some minerals provide vibrant colors that are much safer than their chemically derived counterparts, but they also add natural sun-blocking capabilities to skincare products. Zinc or titanium, for example, will protect your skin from harmful UV rays without penetrating your skin.
Hydrosols as an alternative to artificial fragrances and anti-inflammatory creams
Hydrosols—also known as “flower waters”—are distillates of beneficial plant materials and pure, fresh water. Most people use them to receive the benefits of whatever herbs their hydrosol contains in an easy-to-use format. You can spritz your face with a lovely scented mixture for a refreshing midday pick-me-up or choose a product with potent anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties to improve the health of your skin over time.
We love our Witch Hazel Hydrosol because of its powerful anti-aging, antioxidant effects. It can help to soothe irritated skin, reduce swelling and inflammation, eliminate puffiness in the under-eye area, heal acne, and even keep wounds clean. And it does all of this without the harsh, drying alcohol component in the typical commercial witch hazel formula.
For a calming, soothing experience, try our Lemongrass Hydrosol. Lemongrass is known for its cleansing and cooling properties, as well as for its lovely fresh scent. Our customers use a mist of Lemongrass Hydrosol as aftershave, as a cooling agent for overheated feet and swollen legs, and even as a refreshing hair and scalp rinse. It’s also popular as a skin toner that shrinks pores and evens out your skin for a healthier, more vibrant complexion.
Finding natural makeup and skincare products that suit both your budget and your skin tone is very difficult if you’re looking for vegan options. Many customers choose to avoid makeup that has been tested on animals, but if you want to avoid makeup and skincare products that include anything extracted from animals, the pickings can be slim.
Not every Abbey St Clare product is vegan-friendly—though even our Emu Oil is ethically obtained as a byproduct of harvesting emus for food, not for the oil alone—but many of them are. A great example is our Antioxidant Vegan Lip Gloss with Green Tea, which has antioxidant properties, and Vitamin E, which has skin-healing properties, for a moisturizing and cheerful pop of color to suit your vibrant personality.
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You will have hair challenges over the winter. Think back to years past. Fighting with frizz and static, dreaded hat hair, the feeling as if your locks are breaking off strand by strand every time you use a comb or brush, and so on.
If you’ve purchased skincare products recently, you’ve probably read about peptides as ingredients in some of them.