Thursday, June 7, 2012

They Ugly side of Beauty.

Hi friends. I'm here on my little green soapbox today to share a few things I've learned in just the past week that I deem worth talking about. I've talked about our/my attempt at living a more sustainable lifestyle before and I'm here with what is more or less the third phase in this ever evolving and growing passion of mine. If you're interested I've talked about eating organic here and here as well as cleaning our home with green eco friendly products with my Living Green post.

Perched on the couch Tuesday night happy as a clam I watched a little show called "Pregnant in Heels" (obsessed ha!) and one of the mommy to be's wanted to provide a home that was as "green" as possible for her little one on the way. She ended up being really defensive when she realized she wasn't nearly as eco savvy as she thought and then they started dumping her cosmetics, skincare, and bath and body creams into the bin and she had had about enough.  I kind of laughed because she was a bit of a drama queen and then I realized I've never thought twice about what's actually in those items. As long as it looked pretty, smelled good and claimed to work wonders I was sold. Keep in mind your skin is your LARGEST organ and I pretty much slather mine in a bajillion products a day.

I've done some reading mostly in part to this site:

and made the conscious decision to completely overhaul our day to day skincare routine.

Which consisted of me yelling at Mr. Jones from under the bathroom sink "just so you know I'm throwing out everything in the bathroom so I hope you brushed your teeth today and don't get mad this is for your own good."

It ended like this:

I'm sure it pales in comparison to some (and this is minus my makeup bag) but that's a lot of stuff, some of it brand new, and holy moses that's a lot of sunscreen. I guess we're kind of Hawaiin Tropic hoarders.

Needless to say I've spent the last 48 hours researching just about every skincare item we have including shower gels and soaps, shampoos and my makeup all of which are missing from this photo. What I've learned is beyond disturbing. While I am aware that all of these items clearly passed some sort of safety test... they are on the shelves of the drugstore.. I've also learned that they are jam packed with harsh, harmful unnecessary chemicals that over time can cause serious cell damage which then lead to potentially deadly disease. It's no secret that the chemicals and additives found in most processed foods are killing us, and it really is very much the same with beauty products. There was lead and arsenic in my for real??? Do they know how many times I re-apply? I don't do blush in small doses.

I'm not here to read off every disturbing fact. I've provided the link above so that if you so wish you can see what's in your beauty regime. It's hard to throw away money like that, but to be honest so much of it has been accumulating dust under the sink... so I decided to only re-stock the every day basics...

 Daily lotions... EO whole body, TJ'S facial and LUSH lotion bar..
Still on the hunt for whole body sunscreen that does not cost an arm and a leg.. so far Aveeno is winning for price and lowest toxicity levels. I will say stay away from anything with oxybenzone. TJ's carries two kinds of sunscreen and this one for the face is the safest.

 Bath.. These are all of my body washes. (2 of which I already had) I put some of the Dr. Bronners into that little travel bottle for the shower. The peppermint scent is incredibly invigorating you can use it on face, body and hair! I also used it as my laundry detergent today. Literally you can use it for ANYTHING. For $10 and a million uses it's totally worth it in my book. Mr. Jones lucked out kind of in that he only uses Irish Spring. While it's not great it does score pretty low with a 3 out of 10 toxicity so I said he could keep it ;)

 Here is our hygiene routine.. Toms toothpaste, the peppermint is amaze, TJ's French Liquid hand soap, smells like heaven and has only a few ingredients. Just like food less is more when it comes to ingredients;) And the Alba all natural tea tree oil deodorant.

 Beauty. Here's where it gets tricky for me. I indulged in this Zoya pink and top coat because ALL of my nail polish had formaldehyde in it. Gag. This has none as well as not having a long list of chemicals other nail polishes do have. For make up I'm stuck at the moment. I wear drug store brand. I don't even spend more than $12 on most of it and the name brand stuff it turns out is just as bad for you. The ones at Whole Foods are waaay out of my price range so.. the plan is to go into Walgreens and find the best of the bunch. I picked up this little Terra tint chapstick for $3.49 that I actually really liked so it's a start.

 Here's the new skincare routine in all its glory...
(luckily it's pretty gender neutral so we can both happily use just about all of it)

The shampoo we use is already organic and earth/body friendly so it's not in the pile. At least that was one thing that didn't have to go.

I totally understand that this may seem a little extreme. However I am a girl on a budget and I was able to buy a completely new beauty routine thus far for under $100. Luckily some of the things we already have were good, and I've yet to buy the makeup but like I said I will not spend more than $12 on one item. So it is possible and in my opinion worth it. If I can do better, and the products are out there then why shouldn't I try my best to give my body and skin the best chance it has.

END RANT. Let me know if you have any advice or tips to add!

XOXO- Miss V.


  1. I totally need to do this, I'm going to add this to my weekend 'to-do' list. Great tips. Thanks!

  2. I'm not sure if this is the case with all of them, but I know Revlon makes some nail polish colors that do not have formaldehyde in it.

  3. That is so funny that you just did a post about this. I am visiting my mom and she lives all organic and she has been telling me for years to switch all of my products. Well since I am recently pregnant, I decided to take the plunge. I went to Whole Foods and switched everything just like you. I actually did go with the mineral fusion powder and bronzer and then the Dr. Haushka cover up stick. I believe its worth it to spend a little more on that stuff and it lasts forever. My skin actually hasn't been better, I think before that the products with parabens were to harsh for my sensitive skin. I hard a really hard time with deodorants and if you don't have luck with that one try the Crystal! It works great! My husband loves it too!

  4. Hey Miss V! I remember the first time I visited EWG's site a few years ago and it was horrifying!!! However, I have heard of some discrepancies in their research so I take it all with a grain of salt. A good friend who runs her own bath product company ( has told me that one of the biggest things to look out for is synthetic fragrances. Unfortunately, those are in lots of things but I do what I can.

    While I haven't tried a ton of their products, I think Juice Beauty ( is pretty safe in terms of their ingredients. The other good thing is that we live in a place where a lot of small-batch organically produced products are made (we've linked to a few on our blog here:

    As for sunscreen, We're doing some research on that now and will share our findings with you.

    Sorry for the novel of a comment!


  5. OMG girl! id take some off ur hands! lol

  6. I can't wait to do the same. I'm going to TJs today to get the soap and lotion. I also really like the TOMs deodorant! It works great for me. And, for some reason my face did not react well to the scented Dr.Bronners, but the unscented one is fantastic! I'll have to get some makeup tips from you when you have a chance