Over the past several years consumers have become increasingly aware of the harmful side effects from ingredients commonly found in beauty products. Many of these ingredients have been shown to cause skin irritation and allergic reactions, act as hormone disruptors, and cause certain cancers to name a few.
It’s the heart of why I started Bella Hue in 2020. I was a master stylist for more than 16 years and absolutely loved my job. However, the ingredients in the products I was using on my clients started to make me ill. I was developing hives and experiencing all sorts of allergic reactions to these ingredients. I was determined to find cleaner ingredients and use those ingredients to create products that work.
I am frequently asked for advice on how to switch to cleaner beauty products. It can feel overwhelming at times, so I wanted to share my top tips for making the switch.
Where to start
If you’re new to the clean beauty game, it’s important to remember progress over perfection. Don’t think you must go into your beauty cabinet and throw out everything all at once. When you run out of something, that’s the time to replace it with a cleaner option. Especially if it’s something you use daily.
If nothing else, I always recommend consumers start by eliminating these three things from their beauty lineup:
- Aerosol Sprays – Commonly found in hair sprays and dry shampoos, aerosol products contain alcohol, liquefied petroleum gas, butane, propane, and isobutene. Unless you’re planning a backyard barbeque, these ingredients have no place in your life. More than likely, you’re spraying these products in a confined space like a bathroom and unknowingly inhaling these toxic ingredients.
- Fragrance - Avoid products containing synthetic fragrances. The term is an umbrella term that can hide hundreds of toxic ingredients. Look for products scented with essential oils instead. Unlike synthetic fragrances, which are created in a lab and contain toxic chemicals, essential oils are made from plants.
- Conventional Deodorant – The skin is the largest organ of the body, and because it’s very porous, it will absorb anything applied. Conventional deodorants contain aluminum, which has been linked to Alzheimer’s and breast cancer.
Be wary of “greenwashing”
Beauty brands are catching on that consumers care about what they put on their bodies. Because of this, it has become increasingly popular to include buzzwords on products to try and market them as clean, when in fact they still contain harmful ingredients. Brands have started “greenwashing” their products by marketing them as clean by using earthy colors and images on the bottles and using buzzwords like “natural” and “organic”. While these botanical adorned products are eye-catching and can easily make you feel like they’re clean, the best way to ensure the product is safe is by reading the labels. When it comes to haircare especially, sulfate-free and paraben-free are some of the most common buzzwords used on products. It’s important to remember that just because the product doesn’t contain these harmful ingredients, it doesn’t mean that the rest of the ingredients are clean. There have been several apps developed that make it easy to scan products for harmful ingredients. My personal favorite is the EWG app.As mentioned, switching to cleaner products is a journey and I am not perfect and am still working on cleaning up my lifestyle. However, these small steps will begin to have a compound effect over time and can make a huge impact on your health. What products are you currently looking to swap? Let us know in the comments below if we can help you find a cleaner version.