Full disclosure: I’m not the cooking type. I prefer my food pre-made and my fruits and vegetables cold pressed. But I do still venture to the supermarket on occasion, mainly to stock up on coconut water (my favorite!), snacks, and the occasional salad bar. The other day, while visiting my neighborhood Whole Foods on a quest for a quick and healthy lunch, I found myself in the beauty aisle (no shocker here). And it got me thinking: Could I actually shop for my beauty products and food all under the same roof? The answer is yes.
So, the next time you are at your local, organic market, put yourself to the test: Buy your groceries and your beauty goodies at the same time, in the same place. The grocery store is an untapped resource for some of the best natural beauty products on – and in – the market! The growing popularity of organic foods has spread to skin, hair, and body as well, so, naturally supermarkets are chock-full of healthy beauty delights. Here are my favorites:
*And if you prefer shopping from the convenience of your keyboard (or if you don’t live near a Whole Foods or the like), feel free to click on the links below and purchase the products online.*
1. Alba Botanica Hawaiian Body Scrub Revitalizing Sea Salt ($11) – All Alba products are pretty awesome, but you can’t beat an all-natural Hawaiian scrub… especially in winter when your skin is aching for some serious sloughing. This stuff smells good enough to eat (and is probably healthy enough to nosh on, too, although I wouldn’t suggest trying it!).
2. Nature’s Gate Biotin Strengthening Shampoo ($5) – Of all the “drugstore” shampoos, this is my favorite. It’s free of the bad stuff (sulfates and parabens), and chock-full of the good stuff. Plus, it cleans without stripping, so it’s safe for daily use.
3. Thayers Alcohol-Free Witch Hazel with Organic Aloe Vera Formula Toner with Rose Petal ($8) – An all-natural face toner that wipes away dirt, oil, and acne-causing buildup while leaving skin hydrated and soothed. This stuff is magic!
4. Jason Satin Shower Body Wash Chamomile ($14) – A longtime favorite body wash (that I would still gladly choose over expensive copycats), Jason’s Chamomile lathers to perfection, gently washes, and leaves my skin feeling baby soft. And it smells so delicious, I want to drench myself in it!
5. Dr. Hauschka Melissa Day Cream ($40) – A dreamy moisturizer for combination skin. It smoothes, softens, and purifies, and absorbs quickly for a beautiful matte finish.
6. Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Red Dahlia ($7) – The natural version of Nivea’s Fruity Shine Lip Balms. Shea butter moisturizes while adding a hint of tint to your pout. I carry these around in my bag at all times; they are definitely a buy-in-bulk product.
7. Heritage Rose Petals Rosewater ($6) – Heritage sprays have been a favorite of mine for years. You can use them on your face, hair, and body to douse yourself in refreshing hydration with the most magnificent rosy scent. Sometimes, I even opt out of perfume in favor of this natural, light mist.
8. Coconut Oil ($19) – There are a myriad of ways to use coconut oil (read them here), but I’m partial to using it as a makeup remover and shaving cream (for an exceptionally soft and easy shave). Regardless of how you choose to use the oil, make sure you purchase an organic and virgin make, and have a jar stashed in your beauty cabinet at all times. It never fails.
9. Kiss My Face Sensitive Fluoride-Free Natural Aloe Toothpaste Gel with Xylitol ($5) – Think of this as the all-natural version of Sensodyne. This paste won’t irritate sensitive teeth and gums, and is free of fluoride, artificial colors, flavors, and sweeteners so it’s healthy, too.
10. California Baby Calendula Cream ($21) – Sure, it’s meant for kids, but my skin is as delicate as a baby. And calendula is known for its soothing and calming properties, even for the most sensitive skins. I like to slather my body post-bath with a layer of this thick cream, from shoulders to toes. The mild lavender scent adds extra motivation.
By now, I’m sure you’re aware that antiperspirant/ deodorant combos are really, really bad for you. But just in case you are still using antiperspirant, let’s recap. Goggle the effects of aluminum and scary words like “cancer” and “Alzheimer’s disease” pop up. While sweat marks and body odor aren’t a cute look by any means, vanity is not worth making yourself sick over.
Personally affected by the dangerous effects of antiperspirant, my friend Jena Scaccetti decided to take matters into her own hands. “I created a natural deodorant because I’m estrogen dominant and have endometriosis and fibroids. I’ve had surgery four times and when I found out I had a large fibroid earlier this year, I refused surgery and started working with a naturopath who told me to get rid of all my cosmetics and hair products that contained sulfates, parabens and aluminum,” explains Jena.
Here’s the thing to know about deodorant: you will sweat, so get comfortable with it. Antiperspirant (and thus aluminum) is what stops the sweating. But it’s actually really healthy for your body to sweat. Sweating releases toxins, like the 3 martinis you gulped down last night. Sure, blocking your sweat glands from their very purpose — to sweat it all out — keeps your shirts sweat-stain-free and your odor under wraps, but you’re also going against nature and a lifetime of this can be detrimental to your health.
So, let your body sweat, but make sure to mask the odor. That’s what deodorant does – it deodorizes your stink. Of course, some ingredients do this better than others — and you still want to check the label. Opt for an all-natural deodorant otherwise you’re, once again, allowing your body to ingest toxic materials instead of release them.
Jena’s all-natural, holistic deodorant is called Agent Nateur and will be available in stores in 2015. Until then, here’s our list of the best all natural deodorants. Stay safe and pleasantly scented with one of these healthy options:
1. L’Occitane Refreshing Aromatic Deodorant ($18) – This roll-on deodorant keeps you smelling fresh with lemon, cardamom, and eucalyptus essential oils, also eliminating toxins and impurities. Free of aluminum and parabens.
2. Lavanila The Healthy Deodorant ($14) – Comes in 5 delectable scents, all containing vanilla (vanilla lavender is the jam). “Soothing essential oils blend with beta-glucan technology fight odor effectively while soothing, conditioning, and nourishing the delicate underarm area.” 100 % natural and free of parabens and aluminum.
3. Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Deodorant ($10) – Formulated with Tea Tree Oil and Neem to help eliminate odor, and Lavender, Chamomile, and Aloe Vera to offer protection. It definitely has a more musky, raw scent, but the tea tree oil is a sweat saver (seriously). Aluminum free.
4. Jason Deodorant Stick Pure Natural Aloe Vera ($5) – A soothing all-natural option, aloe vera and vitamin E nourish, while zinc ricinoleate, corn starch and baking soda neutralize and grapefruit seed extract helps fight odor-causing bacteria. Free of aluminum and parabens.
5. Weleda Deodorant Spray in Wild Rose ($14) – Giving new meaning to “your sweat smells like roses,” Weleda’s spray deodorant will have you wanting to douse your entire body with the refreshing and rosy scented mist. Free of aluminum, synthetic fragrance, color, or preservatives and mineral oils.
Are you a fan of natural skincare but you’re not exactly sure what all of those ingredients actually do for your complexion? Well, you’re in luck. We enlisted facialist Adina Diaz, who combines holistic, active, and medical grade products and treatments, to sift through the hundreds of natural ingredients and give us the absolute best ingredient and products for every skin type.
Green Tea extracts are immune enhancing, detoxifying, super antioxidant, anti-cancer, and energizing.
TRY: Lotus Moon Skin Care Green Tea and Lavender Cleansing Milk and MyChelle Pure Harmony Cleanser
Jojoba Oil is a plant extract native to southern Arizona, southern California, and northwestern Mexico and is wondrous oil. Out of all the plant oils Jojoba oil is the most similar to the human lipids. Never clogging or irrating the skin.
TRY: Desert Essence 100% Jojoba oil and Aura Cacia Jojoba Oil
Black soap has a natural source of vitamin A & E and iron. This ingredient supplies the skin with a deep all natural cleansing process without stripping the skin’s natural oils.
TRY: Lotus Moon Skin Care Mineral Earth Cleansing Gel
Witch Hazel is a gentle cleanse for even sensitive skin types but is an astringent. Removing dirt and makeup, helping cool and soothe the skin.
TRY: Weleda One Step Cleanser and Toner, Humphreys Witch Hazel Astringent and Thayers Rose Petal Witch Hazel.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant and is a free radical scavenger in the lipid or the fatty component of the skin. Vitamin E helps repair the tissue and heal wounds faster. Vitamin E can renew dry, chapped skin by bringing softness and suppleness back.
TRY: Lotus Moon Skin Care Hydro Therapy Eye Serum
D20 Deuterium Oxide is a heavier molecular than normal water on the skin. It’s protective and plumping and accelerates regeneration of the skin. This ingredient can deliver moisture deep into the skin. Protects against dryness and dehydration.
TRY: Lotus Moon Skincare D20 Hydra Mist
Aloe Vera contains 20 amino acids! Its hydrating, healing, soothing, and softens the skin.
TRY: Badger’s Damascus Rose Face Sunscreen, John Masters Organic Rose and Aloe Hydrating Mist 4
Willowherb Extract is an amazing alternative to using hydrocortisone which can be stripping to the skin. Willowherb naturally helps soothe, heal, calm and is a natural anti-inflammatory.
TRY: Aubrey Organics Natural Sun SPF 26, Lotus Moon Skin Care Willowherb Serum
Rose extracts are soothing, nurturing and balancing to the skin.
TRY: REN Clean Skin Care Rosa Centifolia Foaming Cleanser, Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Crème
Kaolin Clay is the gentlest of all the clays suitable for all skin types even sensitive. While this is a gentle cleanser Kaolin Clay also brings circulation and blood flow to the skin. Also can be used to prevent breakouts, heal faster and disinfect blemishes.
TRY: REN Clean Skin Care ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser, Lotus Moon Skin Care Living Sea Powder Masque, Suki Transformative Purifying Masque
Natural Calcium Bentonite (Green) Clay is my favorite clay but it can be a little harsh on sensitive skin types.
TRY: Aztec Indian Healing Clay Mask
Multi Fruit Acid are acids that exfoliate the skin while hydrating and increasing cell turnovers leaving skin feeling smooth and soft afterwards. People who are more prone to breakouts can benefit from doing a light fruit acid scrub/ peel once a week to every two weeks.
TRY: REN Clean Skin Care Resurfacing AHA Concentrate Serum, Pangea Egyptian Facial Scrub, Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser
Everyone knows how obsessed I am with my bath time. It’s 30 minutes out of my day where I can relax and unwind in silence – no emails, no texts, no Instagrams (my current obsession).
You can imagine my excitement when learning of the fabulous all-natural product line from the Seaweed Bath Co. With natural seaweed powder baths, detox baths, butters, creams and body washes, the line covers everything body. And the coolest part is that every product is derived from seaweed! While I’m not a fan of eating seaweed (or sushi, I know crazy), I do love the effects of seaweed on the skin. It helps to fight dryness, flakiness and irritated skin. Perfect for winter!
About the company: “Adam Grossman, a long-time psoriasis sufferer, who created his seaweed-based cosmetic products to take control of his own irritated skin without the use of prescribed medications or harsh chemicals.”
Full disclosure: I don’t suffer from psoriasis but I do love myself a product that leaves my skin smooth, glowing and healthy. I tried the Seaweed Detox ($14.89) and Seaweed Body Wash ($16.89). Both were beyond amazing. The entire range comes in delicious scents including citrus, peppermint and lavender (+ unscented). With the faintest smell of seaweed, the products reminded me of a leisure swim in the ocean (although, in this case, it was more like a tight float in my bath).
The detox was my absolute fav. Like a mini spa procedure in the comfort of my own bathroom. After pouring the powder into a running bath and letting it settle, I submerged into a wonderfully intoxicating detox. Yes, even the healthiest of us need a body detox every now and again.
The result: Absolutely lust-worthy skin.
And all of the products are natural… One step closer to an all-natural/ organic beauty regimen! Score!
I had the privilege of receiving a mini facial by Tata Harper herself!!! (swoon) The facial was fabulous (my skin radiated the entire weekend) and, obviously, the all-natural products are amazing. Needless to say, I’m a huge fan of both the person and the range.
Tata is a fascinating person. She grew up in Colombia (love!), moved to the states and settled in Vermont (on a farm because it reminded her of childhood). She started her eponymous skin care line after finding out that her step-father had cancer. The doctor told the family that the skin – the largest organ of the body – ingests everything you put on it.
It makes total sense. Think about it: just like how what you eat effects your insides, so does what you use on the outside. All of the chemicals from makeup, skin care, hair care, and body care are absorbed by the skin and immediately enter the bloodstream. This got me thinking — I have put chemicals on my skin and hair ever since I was a child! WTF?
I left the facial with glowing skin and a serious dilemma. Have my beauty practices jeopardized my health? While I am most certainly interested in organic and natural skin care, I still use a chemical based product every now and again.
(Tata applying her Resurfacing Mask onto me – love the cooling gel consistency and LOVE the way it made my face glow afterwards).
Ever since I can remember, I have been a product hoarder. I used to bribe my friends with money just so that I could give them facials. Every holiday season, I’d ask “Santa” for a caboodle filled with beauty products, one with skin care, one with nail products, and one with makeup. I’d go from being a facialist to a makeup artist to a manicurist (although I soon tired of the manicures as I’m not a fan of other people’s feet and I’m too lazy to paint nails). Before the organic/ natural craze, I must have used gallons of chemicals on my skin, body and hair (and that of my unassuming friends!).
Well, not anymore.
As they say, knowledge is power. I can’t change the past, but moving forward, I can most certainly change my beauty practices. While I won’t guarantee an all-natural beauty regimen, I am definitely going to be more cautious as to what I put on my skin, in my hair and on my body. I have already removed sulfates and parabens from my hair care routine and I use a majority of all-natural skin and body products. Makeup is tough – I’m having a hard time letting go of my must-have mascaras and those fabulously glossy lippies – but I am easing into a more natural approach.
To further my dedication to an all-natural and organic shift, I will write one post a week reviewing a natural/ organic product. I hope that you, too, will join me in exploring these natural alternatives.
Thank you, Tata, for sharing your story and inspiring me to change. One product at a time…
Tell me, what is your favorite natural/ organic product?
Please share your picks!
It’s no secret that I love me a tinted lippy. I’ve graced my mouth with ever since Labello went under. I’m also really into the “green” movement, with hair, skin, body and cosmetics, so you can imagine my excitement after trying the new Pacifica Color Quench Natural Moisture Lip Tint.
Although they’re not as pigmented as Nivea, they are definitely more hydrating, leaving a healthy tint to my pucker and, major bonus, they’re all natural! Free of sulfates, parabens and petrochemicals, even the most discerning mouth will welcome this lippy. It’s like the sophisticated, chicer version of your drugstore chappy.
The formula comes in 4 sheer hues: Bare Coconut, a beige, Blood Orange, a red, Hibiscus Vanilla, a light pink, and Guava Berry, a plum.
So far, I’m mildly obsessed with the Blood Orange as it gives my lips that just-been-kissed blush of red (albeit quite sheer). I have been applying non-stop and am loving how moisturized it leaves my pout.
While I’ll undoubtably use Nivea’s Cherry at some point again – it’s hard to part with a first love – I’m quite content with my new, healthier lip tint choice. So, for all of you organic gals, no excuses to let your lips go bare. Dress them up with a sheer tint.
PRICE TAG: $9.00
Green living is quite the current trend. With organic dining, organic juicing – even organic alcohol – if you haven’t jumped on the organic bandwagon, now would be a good time.
In a series of 3 posts, we are going to outline our favorite organic beauty products. So, if you are as gaga over green as we are, then this series is for you!
NOTE: All products listed are made with organic ingredients and/ or are 100% natural.
Up first, the organic bath:
Bath Oil – Jurlique Tranquil Bath Oil – Bath time is my favorite time of day. I like to chill out with some scented candles and a slew of scented bath products. This specific bath oil is calming (thanks to the lavender), smells wonderful, leaves skin hydrated and soothed (courtesy of avocado oil), and it actually has a slight foam – so it doubles as a bubble bath! $23.00
Bath Salts – Aubrey Organics Natural Spa Relaxing Bath Salts – For the most luxurious of bathing experiences, bath salts are key. This 100% organic choice has a pungent orange scent and dissolves in the tub for ultimate relaxation. The result is two fold: soft skin and a calm disposition. $18.85
Body Exfoliator – Weleda Birch Body Scrub – It’s no secret that Weleda is a favorite line of mine – it’s affordable, contains some of the most amazing natural ingredients, and I always see results! The Body Scrub is amazing – it smells delish (as you can probably tell by now, i’m really into scents!) with a very faint citrus note. It exfoliates gently so you can use everyday on every part of your body. AND it has a milky consistency so it adds moisture while cleaning and scrubbing dry, dull skin! $17.00
Body Wash – Jason Pure Natural Body Wash, Relaxing Chamomile – This is one of my absolute favorite scents. I’ve been using the wash for years because, quite honestly, I find the chamomile aroma to be the ultimate in comfort and relaxation. The formula is pretty magical too. It foams into a perfectly silky wash that is both gentle and non-irritating. And it doesn’t make your skin feel dry and scaly post bath (or shower). Comes in a variety of scents. $5.19 for a 30 fl oz tub! *DRUGSTORE FIND*
Body Bar – Level Naturals Classic Soap in Jasmine Rose – Let me start out by saying that this entire body care line is fantastic (and I will be posting about many more products from Level in the coming weeks). This soap, however, deserved a spot on the coveted “best of” list. It looks and feels homemade (and looks tres chic in my bathroom), smells like a delicate flower garden and cleanses the skin with a fluffy lather that leaves my body soft, never dried out. Comes in over a dozen more scents! $10.00
Body Lotion – Moksa Organics Body Butter, Cocoa Vanilla – Another awesome organic product line. This lotion is actually whipped and hardened shea butter that melts on my skin leaving a sexy sheen (kind of like a body oil). It’s super moisturizing and has the faintest cocoa scent. $16.00
Body Oil – Kate Logan Lavender Nourish Oil – This stuff is other-worldy, the ultimate finish to the bathing experience. Kate makes each product by hand and you can literally feel her passion and love as you slather your body with the goods. The oil is so pure and the scent so intoxicating (not even a hint of that perfume-manufatured smell), it’s like wrapping your entire body in the finest of silky robes. It is light, soothing and gentle and just, well, perfect! 19.99 pounds
Shaving Cream – Aubrey Creme de la Shave, White Tea and Citrus – Would would’ve thought that an all natural shaving cream would actually work better than the regular ones? This shaving cream is a bit lotion a bit gel. It has a clean and uplifting citrus scent and leaves legs touch-approved. A little goes a long way – only a thin layer is necessary for a quality shave! $4.62 *DRUGSTORE FIND*
Shampoo & Conditioner – Sponge Wild Flower Shampoo and Conditioner – I’m so obsessed with this sleek and sexy packaging, I literally want to frame the bottles! Made with myrtle and chamomile, these products leave my hair shiny and gorgeous! Gentle enough for every day and, obvs, made sans sulfates and parabens so great for color-treated locks. $32.00 & $34.00
Deodorant – LAVANILA The Healthy Deodorant, Vanilla-Coconut – If you are still using antiperspirant, we need to have a serious talk. This all natural deodorant won’t clog your pores with toxic aluminum. Instead, it will defend your sweaty pits with the sweetest smelling blend of vanilla and coconut. It’s smells so awesome, sometimes I even wear it to bed! Comes in 4 other vanilla-inspired scents. $18.00
What’s your favorite all-natural bath product?
Summer is most definitely here (finally!) and I, for one, have gotten my first tan of the season. I, of course, applied SPF to both face and body and, in my current quest to switch to as many natural and organic products as possible, I used a natural sun block for the very first time: Alba’s Aloe Vanilla SUNBLOCK Mineral SPF 30. It was fabulous. Rich, super creamy with an incredibly fragrant vanilla smell. Not like those beachy, sunscreen smells we remember years (and tans) past. This was more like a lotion scent, something I could wear around for the day and not get nauseated by.
And it got me thinking – there must be tons of fabulous natural sunscreens on the market place… so I did some research. And there are.
Here, 5 great natural sunscreens for your tanning pleasure:
Burt’s Bees Chemical-Free Sunscreen SPF 30 – This 100% natural, non-whitening formula provides broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection and helps keep skin hydrated without using chemical sunscreen actives like octinoxate and oxybenzone. Instead, titanium dioxide, a naturally-occurring mineral creates a micro-fine barrier on your skin to reflect the sun’s harmful rays. $11.50
– This hypoallergenic sun block is extra mild and safe for use on babies and sensitive adults. Enriched with Chamomile and Marigold Extracts, this sun block not only protects but soothes. No Mineral Oil, Petrolatum or Waxes, Fragrance-Free and Paraben-Free. $14.99
Aveeno Natural Protection Sunblock Lotion SPF 30 – contains MINERALBLOCK Technology with 100% naturally-sourced active ingredients, a more natural alternative. MINERALBLOCK Technology forms a protective barrier on top of baby’s skin that scatters both UVA and UVB rays. This oil-free, non-whitening formula is also fragrance-free, waterproof, and hypoallergenic. $10.99
Badger SPF 30+ Lightly Scented Lavender Sunscreen – Certified Natural & Chemical-Free – Uncoated, Non-Nano Zinc Oxide Sunscreen with Superior Broad Spectrum UVA and UVB Protection. Certified Organic ingredients, are naturally water resistant, safe for children of all ages, block both UVA and UVB rays, and thoroughly moisturize while they protect you from the sun. $16.00
Alba Aloe Vanilla SUNBLOCK Mineral SPF 30 – Certified organic Aloe Vera and Chamomile moisturize and soothe skin. Grape Seed Oil, Tea Tree and Vitamin E provide antioxidant protection. Helps prevent sunburn with an effective, mineral-based, UVA & UVB broad-spectrum reflective barrier. $9.95