Extreme Green Cosmetics: Could You Give Up Chemicals for Good?

Posted Wednesday February 27, 2013 2:00 PM GMT

With the growth of all-natural skincare and cosmetic brands on the market, we’ve started to use products that are both good for us and the environment. But every day — and every product? We wouldn’t know where to start!

While we're still relatively novice, extreme green beauty-goers are on the rise, and we want to know how they manage to look great with just a fraction of the goodies we’re privy to. We caught up with Margaret Hyde, an award-winning filmmaker, author and designer who built one of the greenest homes — and beauty regimes — in America. Here’s how she did it:

When did you go green in your beauty routine?
I went green with my beauty routine two years ago and extreme green about a year ago. I was shocked when I realized that the products that I was bringing into my home and putting on my body contain so many harmful chemicals. It doesn’t make sense to live in a green house, live a green lifestyle and put toxic chemicals on your body.

What was the biggest challenge you faced when you went extreme green?
Cosmetics — you have to be able to let go of the products that you have always used. It is like getting rid of an old friend. The natural products are good, but you are never going to get the same look or coverage.

So do you feel restricted in your makeup pallete?
I think that my [green-thumbed] friends who love vibrant red lip stick feel a little restricted — most lipsticks contain chemicals and lead and are not great for you. [But] I don't ever feel restricted these days, because there are so many amazing green makeup lines now.

What's your go-to, can't-live-without cosmetic product?
Coastal Creations mineral foundation and blush — these products are organic, paraben-free and come in an amazing variety of colors.

What does natural toothpaste taste like?
I absolutely love the way Vitacare toothpaste tastes, but the other brands are very grainy or have a real tea tree taste, which is hard to take. Vitacare has a fresh mint taste with a hint of acai flavor. My children had a hard time with the change, but they’ve adjusted.

What’s your favorite shampoo, conditioner and soap?
I love Davines Authentic Cleansing Nectar with organic car thane oil shampoo and their crème conditioner. It has no sulfates or parabens, and still leaves my hair feeling clean and silky.

Are there any other "green" beauty secrets you'd like to share?
Organic coconut oil is my go-to item — it’s better than any body lotion or lip balm. You can also use it on your face and it won't cause breakouts. Organic brown sugar and coconut also makes a great inexpensive body scrub.

To try it, mix equal parts dried coconut and brown sugar, along with one tablespoon of coconut oil to hold it together.

What advice would you give someone who wants to go green with their beauty routine?
Start slow. Go one category at a time, starting with the most chemical-filled
down to the least.

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