Ruth Griffin: Keeping it clean with 100% natural beauty products
We've seen a revolution of sorts in our food culture over the last decade.
The movement of clean eating has led to us becoming hyper-conscious of the detrimental effects chemical-laden, processed food can have on our bodies, minds and looks. This awareness of what we put in our bodies is making us more mindful of what we put on our bodies every day too.
Mindful beauty is a strongly growing trend in the beauty and wellness world, with celebrities like Lena Dunham announcing recently on Instagram her skincare routine was going fully "clean, mean and green".
Modern living has been described as existing in a "chemical cocktail" - but at the most fundamental level everything that exists is chemical in nature - where many problems arise is the ubiquitous nature of synthetic chemicals in so many beauty products. As much as 60pc of these synthetic chemicals are absorbed into our bloodstreams in less than a minute so it's vital we inspect these ingredients.
I started to became aware of what I was putting on my skin (and my blood) when I was pregnant and nursing my son. Becoming a mother made me conscious of chemicals I used on myself, my child and in my home.
I'm in no way puritanical - I'm not averse to an occasional chemical peel or using active, non-natural ingredients when targeting specific skin issues. However, problems arise when we have no idea of the chemicals in many personal care products and their potential risks. To combat this, wherever I can, I eliminate these products. I also really want to be kind to my surroundings - some beauty products can have a very ugly effect on our environment. Here I've listed some of my favourite clean, beauty goodies that are great for mind, body and soul…
Who to follow
Irish natural skincare website Naturalskincare.ie has a huge array of clean, natural beauty brands and products to choose from - ranging from 100pc natural hair dyes and lipsticks, to nail polishes and face serums.
Jessica Alba Billion Dollar (Clean) Babe
The gorgeous actress, and mum of two little girls, is a glowing ambassador for clean living. She founded The Honest Company — a hugely successful enterprise selling natural, clean beauty goods and non-toxic baby and household products. There’s clearly a huge market for clean products — the influential financial magazine Forbes recently priced her company’s value at $1.7bn!
1 Head Rush
For an all-natural, clean option to combat frizzy bad hair days, check out John Masters Organics Hair Nourishment and Hair Defrizzer Elixir, €19.95.
2 Take your minerals
This entire make-up line is oil, talc, dye, preservative, paraben and fragrance-free — Jane Iredale Skin Dust, €12, for use on skin, eyes, cheeks or lips.
3 Body of Work
I only use 100pc natural products for my body moisturisation, as I feel it’s the product that is absorbed by the largest section of my skin. As such I want it to be as clean a product as possible. Try Aveda Shampure Body Lotion, €13.
4 Hands Up
I wash my hands so many times a day (like most mums) so I always opt for a clean, chemical- free soap — check out Cowshed Dirty Cow Hand Wash, €14.50 — it lasts for ages.
5 Nailed Down
I recently discovered how many chemical nasties there are in some nail varnishes. Look for ‘5-free’ nail lines — it signifies they are free from formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, formaldehyde resin and camphor. Try vegan brand Benecos, €8.95.
6 Squeaky Clean
Like my body moisturiser, I always opt for a clean, toxin- free shower gel as the area this product is used on is so large. I love Trilogy Botanical Wash, €18.
7 Face Facts
This gorgeous clean skincare range has been pioneering top quality, natural skincare for decades. REN Bio Retinoid Anti-Ageing Concentrate, €50, is a jam-packed serum with hydrating Vitamin A. Use under your normal moisturiser.
8 Magic Mist
Kiehl’s Tibetan Ginseng Hydrating Mist, €22.50, is the most gorgeous 100pc natural alternative to chemical laden, alcohol drenched mainstream toners. (TIP — use a face mist throughout the day for a skin SOS pick-me-up).
9 Skin Soother
Award-winning Neal’s Yard Frankincense Intense, €70, is a deeply nourishing, soothing face cream that smells delicious.
10 Megawatt Smile
The biggest selling toothpaste in America is the 100pc vegan Dr Bronner’s Organic Peppermint Toothpaste, €8.50. (NOTE: This does taste quite different and takes a bit of getting used to but if you’re serious about keeping your products clean, then this is worth a try.)