Clean beauty has become quite a revolution in recent years and it was a topic I personally started exploring more after being diagnosed with skin cancer in 2019. I was suddenly more aware of what I was putting on my skin every day and I made efforts to get better educated about the personal care products in my house – particularly when it came to skincare and makeup.
But the word “clean” when it comes to skincare also has been overused, misused and been corrupted by marketing. Often times brands say it without having the goods to back it up and frankly it can be really confusing to sort through all the jargon. I also don’t love how it has been used as a scare tactic by some companies in order to sell products.
That being said, the way I see clean skincare is products that are made without ingredients shown or suspected to harm human health. Sadly, the FDA in the U.S. doesn’t do much to protect us when it comes to the cosmetics and skincare products we use every day. They have approved products that have chemicals known to cause cancer time and time again. Shockingly, to this day, U.S. law allows carcinogens in baby shampoo, “fragrance” to be undisclosed, PFAS to contaminate the supply chains and it is totally mum on sustainability and labor practices.
Benefits Of Clean Skincare
Nowadays, there’s more of a consensus in the industry that clean refers to products that favor natural ingredients. It doesn’t mean a product is non-toxic or chemical-free. Because in the end, any ingredient at certain levels could be considered toxic and some chemicals are good (and necessary!) So it’s important to be cautious when labeling things clean but overall as the beauty industry continues to move towards “better for you” ingredients, I thought I’d discuss some of the benefits of clean skincare as well as some of my favorite products that fall into this category.
So, when you take the time to really delve into what products you’re using and assess whether they may be something better out there for you – with more natural, less harmful ingredients – it can be really worthwhile.
Less Skin Reactions
So many of the chemicals can cause skin reactions that can be painful or cause breakouts or rashes. If you want to avoid any skin reactions, be sure to look at the ingredient list on the products you’re putting on your face and cross-reference them online to see if they have been known to cause irritation. I also like to read the reviews online to see what people have said about products when it comes to skin reactions.
A lot of approved chemicals and other ingredients that the FDA still allows in the United States (that the EU have banned years and years ago) can cause breakouts. Be sure to look at the ingredients listed on the products you’re putting on your face. And cross-reference them online to see if they have been known to cause breakouts.
Less Exposure to Harmful Ingredients
If you think about how often we apply the products we use, exposure over time really adds up. If you’re using a product with parabens or talc – you never know whether this use could lead to a scary health diagnosis down the line. A lot of FDA-approved ingredients are also known endocrine disruptors. So better to be cautious with what you’re using every day.
Synthetic fragrance abounds in products in the U.S. (think about that iconic Herbal Essence smell from back in the day…) and fragrance can actually be really irritating for some people. In products that source more natural ingredients, you’ll be left with natural fragrance only often.
Best Clean Skincare Products
Here’s a sampling of some of my favorite clean skincare products I reach for time and time again.
My favorite daily gel cleanser. Leaves skin super clean but not feeling stripped at all.
This toner is a game changer for breakouts. I discovered it first after wearing facial masks during the 2020 pandemic became a regularity and my usually breakout-free face started getting loads of angry pimples. The toner + the below Vinopure serum from the same line completed cleared up my maskne and healed my breakouts in less than two weeks. It features 100 percent natural salicylic acid to control oil and diminish the appearance of future blackheads and breakouts. If I ever feel breakouts coming on I reach for this toner right away and begin using it after cleansing. It goes to work right away.
This clay mask draws out impurities for whenever pores are feeling clogged.
Tackles fine lines to help them look diminished while also hydrating the under eye area. Easy to put makeup on afterwards. It lifts and plumps so it’s extra great for aging skin.
Longtime readers will know this is holy grail for me. It is pricey but the results are worth it. You skin will feel utterly amazing after this. The glow is REAL. With regular use my skin looks so good. It is powerful though so don’t leave on longer than the 20 prescribed minutes. And be sure to nourish your skin with a favorite face oil afterwards.
This cleansing balm is so amazing! It truly feels heavenly going on and just melts into an oil taking all of your makeup off oh so easily. Totally hooked on this stuff and it’s officially being added to The Best Clean Face Cleansers.
This night cream is the best for dry, dehydrated skin. You’ll notice an improvement in your dry skin in just one use. I add it back into my routine every November/December as the air gets colder and dryer and indoor heating kicks in. I’ve used up several jars and I’ve never found another cream to rival the hydration this one gives (even La Mer didn’t do as good of a job!) I have found that a little goes a long way. And this cream will absorb best when you let your other skincare soak in first.
This serum has a cult-like following for good reason. It’s highly concentrated to get to work fast. It’ll combat any dark spots that are bothering you, even your skin tone and boost your overall radiance.
If you suffer from breakouts or overly oily skin – reach for this serum. It’s a lightweight gel powered by 100 percent natural salicylic acid to address blackheads, pores, breakouts, and excess oil. I use it whenever my skin is feeling congested or like I might be breaking out soon in tandem with the Vinopure toner. It has a bit of a soapy texture to it which I don’t love. But I’ve found that as long as you let it soak in and dry before you apply other products, it’ll solve that.
A longtime favorite mask of mine, this mask warms on contact making it a soothing experience. And it really works to re-hydrate skin that’s depleted. Skin will be more nourished and plump after use and if you have any blemishes this one is particularly great as honey serves as an antibacterial to help fight and heal them.
This light as air moisturizer applies like a dream and dries with a matte finish making it perfect as an A.M moisturizer you apply before makeup. Thanks to its formula featuring superfoods and antioxidants your skin will be better protected and hydrated with daily use.
. . .
Do you have any favorite clean skincare products? I’d love to hear about them!
You May Also Like:
- My Favorite Products at Credo Beauty.
- My Go-To Quick Makeup Routine.
- Favorite French Beauty Products.