Discover Organic Makeup and Cosmetics

With all the money and effort we spend to eat organic foods, why not make the same kind of healthy choice when it comes to the products we use on our skin on a daily basis? If we take such care with what we put into our bodies, it only makes sense to consider what we put on our bodies, including makeup.

Makeup and Your Skin
So, why include organic makeup and cosmetics on your shopping list? It's simple. Our skin is the largest organ of our bodies, and we should protect it as much as it protects us. Skin is a two-way membrane from which toxins are eliminated via perspiration while other compounds, such as the ingredients in many cosmetics and toiletries, are absorbed. Read the ingredient list on one of your cosmetics or toiletries, and think about how much you use in a year to get an idea of how much your skin might take in.

Since your skin absorbs so much, it is important to be aware of what you put on it. You may not recognize many of the ingredients that are printed on your makeup package. If you aren't sure what an in ingredient is and are concerned, buying organic makeup can help you take charge of what goes on your skin.

What It Means to Be Organic
The word "organic" refers to a method of production. If any product is labeled organic, then it was grown without the use of any chemicals, such as fertilizers or pesticides.

However, not all products that say they are organic truly are, or they use another word, such as "natural" or "pure" to suggest they are organic. Some companies simply want to sell you a product, and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulates only what is considered "organic," not what is "natural" or "pure."

You must read labels carefully and check for a label indicating that the makeup is "certified organic" by the USDA. The "certified organic" label tells you that 95% of the ingredients have been organically grown. If the USDA says that a product has been "made with organic ingredients" on the packaging, then at least 70% of its ingredients are organic. Even if a product claims to respect animal and environmental welfare, that does not mean it is organic unless you see the label. And if you don't recognize the ingredients, you might want to do some research before you buy.

Words of Caution
When buying organic makeup, keep any allergies you have in mind. Whether or not a product is organic will have no effect on an allergic reaction. Once you have determined that a product has the "certified organic" label, read the ingredients list to check if the makeup includes any ingredients that might irritate your skin due to allergies.

Another warning about organic makeup involves your wallet. For many reasons, including environmental awareness, organic makeup is a hot trend. Where hot trends go, people looking to part you from your money follow. Judge a product not by its price but by its ingredients, how it makes you feel, and how it makes you look.

Once you purchase an organic or all-natural product, you should store it anywhere except the bathroom. Organic products have fewer preservatives, which means they won't last as long as other cosmetics. The moist environment of the bathroom might cause the makeup to spoil faster, and you'll have to throw it out.

Where You Can Find Organic Makeup
Your choices for organic makeup-from lipsticks to eye shadows-are limitless and can be found in price ranges that we can all afford. More companies are jumping onto the organic makeup bandwagon and starting lines that are eco-friendly and healthy. SafeCosmetics.org can help you find out if the cosmetics you are currently using are safe, what the cosmetic companies are doing to change their manufacturing practices and what brands might work for you and the members of your family.

You can also explore the "Dirty Dozen" list of ingredients in the Green Guide. If you want to go organic, you can get started by avoiding products that contain these ingredients. An even easier way to cut down on the chemicals in your cosmetics is to reduce the number of cosmetics you use on a daily basis. A simpler beauty routine means fewer chemicals on your skin, plus it will save you time and also cut down on waste.

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Natural and organic beauty products include those that are made with natural ingredients and do not include any chemicals or dyes. However, the terms "organic" and "natural" are not interchangeable.

While no beauty products can truly be 100% green or have a zero carbon footprint, green beauty products should be formulated and packaged to minimize their impact on the environment.

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Using organic skin care products can help you reduce the number of chemicals you apply to your skin. However, you need to look for products that have been certified organic by the US Department of Agriculture, and you still need to read the list of ingredients.

You can find all natural beauty products as well as organic, herbal and vitamin-enriched products everywhere, but how you take care of yourself has as much to do with how effective the products are as the formulations themselves.

From the drugstore to chic department stores to online boutiques, all natural skin care products are everywhere you look. How do you know what's good and what's not, and are they really better for your skin?

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