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We have options! Lots of options. Options about what goes on our skin and in our bodies. Gone are the days when we were at the mercy of drugstores and department stores for our beauty products. There are clean and green beauty companies popping up all over, allowing the conscious consumer to make educated decisions about what goes on her face and body. This is why when you have a choice of where to spend your money, consider staying away from these items that won’t do you a lick of good:
- Products Without Clinical Results. There are A LOT of green beauty companies out there. Anyone can mix essential oils in their basement or make soap in their bathtub. And they probably smell amazing and might even moisturize your skin. But take a step back and think about what you are looking for out of your skincare regimen….probably something that softens wrinkles, lightens pigmentation, reduces redness, gets rid of acne, etc. There are ingredients that are known to produce these kinds of results (e.g. retinol, vitamin C, alpha and beta hydroxy acids, etc). And companies that test out their products before they go to market to make sure they provide clinical results. Find those and buy them.
- Products That Hurt. I’ll just say this right now. Your skincare routine should not be painful. I repeat, your skincare products should not be causing you pain. When your products work, you see a difference in the mirror or you feel a smoother texture. A tingle? OK. But you do not feel your face burning or your skin being ripped off. While they do make for entertaining viral videos, it’s not worth it. Don’t succumb to the fads.
- Products With Questionable Ingredients. I cannot even begin to name all the ingredients you should avoid, but I will say that synthetic doesn’t always mean bad, and natural doesn’t always mean good. That’s why it’s so important to be educated about what the ingredients in your products. You want to try to stay away from parabens, phthalates and other endocrine disruptors. Mineral oil, although sounding very natural, is derived from petroleum, heavily processed and clogs your pores. The other thing to watch out for are products that are not necessary bad, but just don’t do anything, for example glutathione (which cannot be generated externally) or gold or diamonds.
- Products That Are Just Marketing. I’m a sucker for beautiful packaging. But once I became a more conscious consumer, I learned to turn over the package and read the fine print. “Organic” and “natural” are not regulated terms in the beauty industry. So it’s important to see what ingredients a brand defines as being organic or natural. Also it’s so easy to slap a buzz word on a package to attract a customer. For example, gluten-free skincare? Unless you are eating it or have severe allergies, you don’t need to worry about gluten in your skincare.
So take your dollars and spend them where you will. If you really want to make a viral video, I can’t stop you (and it will probably be hilarious)! But for the best bang for your buck keep these tips in mind so you don’t waste your hard earned money.