If you’ve been following along, by now you’ve gone through your daily products and have identified your most-used items, narrowing your focus for your switch to non-toxic beauty. (And if you haven’t, click here to get started).
Once you begin noticing the abundance of chemicals invading our lives, standing idly by shouldn’t be an option. But it’s hard not to feel defeated as everywhere we turn we are met by more and more toxins spreading to every aspect of our self-care products, home, and food.
Can you go about this change without feeling like you’re fighting a losing battle at every shop corner?
Don’t Feel Guilty for Starting Small
Getting sucked in by products that are marketed as “natural” and “organic,” only to find after-use that the product contains toxic chemicals, is a common tale. Or maybe you feel so committed to making the switch that you’re holding off showering/using your current skin care routine until you find the right non-toxic products.
First, please go take a shower.
Second, remind yourself that this is where you start — being conscious of what you’re using and recognizing toxins in your products!
While I believe an ultimate goal of living 100% toxic-free is the sure-fire way to staying committed to this lifestyle, I also know the world we live in makes this virtually impossible. Going from a product where every other ingredient is toxic to one in the whole bunch is an amazing feat. Be proud of the small steps.
Simplify, Simplify, Simplify
The marketing industry for beauty has one goal – to make you buy more.
In this day and age we are made to believe that in order to have perfect hair and skin we need to follow a multi-step regimen where each product targets a different “problem.”
I once believed in order to achieve an ultimate goal of standardized beauty, I needed to use the “celebrity-recommended” products or routine, which would often include stocking up on makeup remover, facial cleanser, exfoliator, toner, spot treatment, moisturizer; face primer, three different concealers, foundation, five eyeshadow palettes, blush, multiple lip colors, two different mascaras; shampoo, conditioner, heat protectant, mousse (really, what even is that stuff?) hairspray, and dry shampoo.
Now, regularly, I use:
- Facial Cleanser + Microfiber cloth
- Facial Oil
Everyone’s skin is different, and my routine isn’t for everyone, but I would feel safe saying half of the people reading today use more products than are necessary. Think about what you use and if you can simply eliminate a product rather than find an alternative.
Friends, blogs, YouTube, EWG.org. These are all great resources not just for information but also encouragement.
- EWG can quickly show you on a 1-5 scale how toxic a product or ingredient is;
- Blogs and YouTubers can enlighten you to natural brands you’ve never heard of and recipes for DIY products;
- Friends can offer experienced tips and tricks (and really good friends can let you know if that natural deodorant is actually working).
Don’t be shy in building your own personal support system.
Enjoy the Process
It’s common to feel discouraged in the beginning. This natural product broke you out just as badly as the drugstore brand; you can’t find anything in your price range; the thought of giving up your signature perfume is impossible; surely nothing can be as good as the long-wearing Este Lauder foundation you keep on hand for special occasions.
But when you finally find the right natural product for you and start seeing results, trust me – nothing is more satisfying nor confidence-boosting. Trying green beauty products has become a hobby of mine; I love researching and discovering new products that are made of the earth and actually work.
There is an awareness and connection to self that occurs when you switch to natural products. You learn things about your body and how you as an individual react to change. It’s an enlightening and thrilling moment when you finally look in the mirror see no chemicals lurking in the form of a breakout, irritation, or headache — just your true, natural self.
Let me know in the comments where you are beginning your journey! What part makes you most excited or fearful?