Natural skin care have long been India’s gift to the world, and now almost every day we see new ideas and brands emerging on the scene, giving all of us an opportunity to benefit from the ‘Green Beauty’ revolution. DoGreen spoke with Paige Padgett, a U.S. based skin care expert, celebrity make-up artist and and the author of ‘Green Beauty Rules – The Essential Guide to Toxic-Free Beauty, Green Glamour, and Glowing Skin’, to get her expert views on how we can become Green Beauties!
Paige: Green Beauty is about lessening your body burden meaning the amount of toxic chemicals in our bodies. Many of the chemicals in traditional cosmetics and petrochemicals in general are carcinogenic, neurotoxic, estrogenic and associated with birth defects which is why it’s called a body burden. The goal with green beauty is to lessen it over time through non-toxic cosmetics.
Paige: The impact of what we use on our body is significant for the environment too. The chemicals we use bio accumulate and pollute our water supply which in turn pollute our crops and so on. We live in a closed circuit system. What we do to the earth we do to ourselves. What we do to ourselves we do the the earth.
Paige: Green beauty cosmetics are those that are chemically safe, natural and organic. They all fall in the naturals category.
Paige: Not all chemicals are toxic, such as POLYGLYCERYL-4 ISOSTEARATE which is a relatively safe chemical to use. However, it’s difficult to know which ones are really bad, which is why I recommend looking them up on the EWG Skin Deep Cosmetic Database. POLYGLYCERYL-4 ISOSTEARATE for example, scores a 1 on the database which is a low toxicity score.
Paige: I ask women just starting out by looking for the 3 P’s Parabens, Perfume (fragrance) and Petrochemicals. While it is quite easy to spot Parabens and Perfume (the ingredient label will say Paraben in some form, and it will also say fragrance or perfume), but it will not say petrochemicals. That is a chemical group. It can be identified with the prefix ‘eth; and words with lots of ‘y’s and x’s’. Natural products do often have natural fragrances but rarely are they heavily perfumed. It’s best to check the label or with the manufacturer for the exact ingredient used, and look it up on the EWG Skin Deep Cosmetic database. Most products we start using can become a part of our lives over a long term, and the time invested in research is worth it!
Paige: It varies from product to product but usually there are natural preservatives that are highly effective. Skin care products are what seems to go off the fastest if the product has no preservatives. It really depends on the formula.
Paige: Five superstar cosmetic ingredients in natural cosmetics are Broccoli Seed Oil, Coconut Oil, Honey, Aloe Vera and Apricot Seed Oil or Almond Oil. They can be used as is, and whipped up into amazing skin care products right in your kitchen!
Paige: The consumer must be savvy and educated. Read ingredient labels and know your stuff. It’s not easy that’s why I wrote The Green Beauty Rules. In the book I show women how to read and ingredient label, how to identify the 3 P’s and recommend about 200 high performance and glamorous cosmetics which are currently available in the U.S
Paige: Yes, you can order the book on Amazon. I do not have any Indian brands as they are still too obscure here in the US and hard to find for the average consumer. I have fantasies about writing the book for the indian market using all indian brands one day.
Paige: Women in India are so lucky when it comes to beauty. Indian women have access to hundreds of DIY old world recipes handed down to them from past generations. Women in the West are looking to the East for beauty tradition and at home DIY’s and India has some of the best. I often ask my Indian friends for home recipes to solve beauty problems such as pigmentation and acne. I have found these recipes work and without harsh chemicals. So my call to action for all Indian women is to utilize more of these recipes, ask your mother and grandmother to teach you as many as possible and pass them down to your children. Beyond that, I ask Indian women to educate themselves about chemicals and know what chemicals they will and will not allow for in their cosmetics for themselves and families. Seek out products that with EcoCert (it’s the most widely used in India) or another natural and organic certification BDIH a german certification or COSMOs which is international it’s a good start. Check ingredients and products (mostly American products but some European) on The Skin Deep Cosmetic Database so you know what ingredients you will and won’t allow for. And lastly, don’t stop with cosmetics extend that to your diet, household products.
Have additional questions for Paige? Write them in the comments box, and we’ll get you a response!