The more informed you are as a shopper, the better your purchases will be. Nowhere is this more evident than when shopping for clean beauty skincare products. Clean beauty is having a big moment right now, and even your typical drugstore brands are hopping on the trend. With that being said, greenwashing does exist and will only become more common as clean beauty becomes more popular. If you want to be a better skincare advocate for yourself, follow these tips.
#1 Go Straight to the Ingredients
The cosmetic shelves are usually crowded, and brands do whatever they can to stand out and entice you to pick up their product. Whether online or at the store, brands go above and beyond to have their packaging set your expectations or even mess with your perception. However, beyond the colorful icons and flashy packaging, you’re left with the product itself and the not-so-exciting ingredients list. As a skincare advocate, you must go straight to the ingredients list, no matter how boring it might seem compared to the rest of the packaging.
A good rule of thumb to consider is that the first five or so ingredients form the foundation of the formula. If you see water or some petroleum derivative in the top five, it might not be a highly effective product. On the flip side, if you’re looking at a serum foundation and notice the first few ingredients are organic botanical juices, it’s a good sign that the brand’s formula can back up its clean beauty branding.
#2 Focus on What the Brand Approves
The clean beauty world is full of nos. Many of these no's are in good faith too, such as parabens or sulfates. However, lots of brands get away with talking only about what they say ‘no’ to while hiding what they might say ‘yes’ to in their formulas. Buried deep in the ingredients list, you might see unfamiliar names or even some red flags such as synthetic dyes, fragrance, or even less-effective ingredients such as petroleum derivatives or plain old water. The best clean beauty brands will be proud to share what is in their products. For example, they might rave about their use of organic botanical juices or antioxidant-rich ingredients. While you want to know what a brand says ‘no’ to, make sure you identify what they approve of too.
#3 Keep Track of the Results
Being a skincare advocate for yourself often means trying all sorts of products. Even the same brand might offer a few variations of moisturizer with SPF so, it can be tricky to mentally keep track of what worked for you and what didn’t. Many people like to keep a journal to track the new clean beauty products they try. Even just a short little blurb like “YES! This did wonders for the appearance of my complexion” will help you remember to pick that product up again.