There are thousands of different cosmetic products available on the market. Each product contains different ingredients, colours and formulas. Most people don’t even know what their products contain and if they’re harmful to the skin. Before we go into detail on toxic ingredients that can be found in regular makeup products, let’s list the different types of makeup and what they’re used for.
Types of makeup products
Foundation– this is used to even out the skin tone and to cover blemishes. It creates a smooth canvas and base for the rest of your makeup products. Foundation comes in different finishes, from matte to more illuminating formulas. They can also be more light coverage or heavy coverage depending on your preferences.
Primer-primer is applied before foundation and helps it apply smoothly. It minimises the appearance of pores and controls the skin’s oil production. It also helps keep your makeup on longer.
Concealer- concealer is used to conceal imperfections, blemishes, red spots, dark spots or under eye bags. It usually comes in a liquid formula, which tends to be lighter, or a thicker, creamy formula for more coverage.
Powder- this is applied after foundation and concealer to set them in place. Powder comes in a loose or pressed form and helps give the skin a blurred effect. It also helps mattify the skin.
Bronzer- bronzer warms up the complexion and gives the skin a nice tanned look. It is mostly used during the warmer months, but of course, can be used all year round. It gives the face dimension.
Blush- blush makes the skin look more youthful and healthy by giving the cheeks some colour. It comes in different formulas but is usually always pink or peach.
Contour Powder- contour also gives the face dimension and is applied to the hollows of cheeks, tops of the forehead, and the nose. It makes a face look slimmer and gives the appearance of more defined cheekbones.
Highlighter- it’s used to give the face an illuminated look. Highlighter comes in cream, powder, loose and liquid forms. It’s applied to the high points of the face: the tops of cheekbones, cupid’s bow, bridge of the nose, and sides of the forehead.
Eyeshadow base- this is used under eyeshadow to help blend the colours better and keep the eyeshadow in place. This step is especially useful for those with oily skin.
Eyeshadow- there are thousands of different eyeshadow colours, formulas and finishes. Eyeshadow brings out your eye shape and colour and allows you to play around with colours on your lids.
Mascara- mascara elongates the eyelashes by applying tiny fibres onto them with the brush. It opens up the eyes and makes them appear bigger. It’s mostly sold in dark colours like black and dark brown.
Eyeliner- this product shapes the eyes and can be used to create different eye looks such as the popular cat eye or smokey eye. It’s typically black but comes in all types of colours. Some people use a lighter eyeliner to line the bottom lashline.
Eyebrow- pencils, pomades and shadows are a few ways to fill in eyebrows. You can go for a more natural look by lightly filling them in with a pencil or use pomade for more intense, carved brows.
Setting eyebrow/eyelash gel– this product keeps your hairs in place for many hours.
Lipstick- a classic product that comes in many colours, including the iconic red lipstick. It makes your lips stand out and gives them colour.
Lip gloss- lip gloss also gives the lips colour and shape but leaves a layer of shine on them. It makes them appear bigger and fuller.
Lip liner- lip liners define the lips shape and also enhance the shape and size of the lips.
A lot of the cosmetics widely available in drugstores contain harmful ingredients that are not only bad for your skin, but also the environment. Your skin is your body’s largest organ, and it should be treated with care. Here a few ingredients to avoid when checking the ingredients of products:
- Ethanolamine compounds– these contain chemicals called nitrosamines that can potentially cause cancer. Avoid the letters TEA, MEA and DEA.
- Parabens– preservatives that are used to prevent the growth of bacteria in makeup products. Once the skin absorbs them and is transmitted into the bloodstream, they can cause early puberty and breast cancer.
- Carbon black– a powder that can be found in eye products. It’s been linked to cancer and organ system toxicity and is typically shown on the label as acetylene black, carbon black and channel black.
- BAK- a preservative found in mascara and eye products that can be toxic to the epithelial cells of the eyes.
- Heavy metals– chrome and nickel are two heavy metals found in different types of makeup, especially green or metallic colours. They are neurotoxins that can be linked to brain damage and lung cancer.
- Retinyl acetate- a form of vitamin A that has been linked to reproductive toxicity and cancer.
- Titanium dioxide– this ingredient is only safe when it’s in powder form. It can be found as TiO2.
How to avoid harmful chemicals
It’s not easy completely avoiding harsh ingredients in makeup products. The safest way to be sure you’re using products that are good for your skin is to switch to organic makeup brands. These brands use only all natural, safe, vegan ingredients that are extremely beneficial for the skin. When it comes to certified organic makeup, there are plenty of options to choose from.
- Juice Beauty
This brand creates organic and natural clinically-validated skincare and vibrant plant-pigmented cosmetics. All of their products are vegan and cruelty-free, they utilise sustainable energy sources for production, and they’re USDA certified organic.
- Au Naturale
This brand was found by a nuclear analyst looking for safe cosmetics that are nourishing for the skin. All of their products are vegan, non-toxic, gluten-free, and paraben free. Their products should feel as if you have nothing on your skin. It should only feel refreshing and non-irritating. Their speciality is bold lip colours that feel amazing on the lips.
- Real Purity
They only use the highest quality botanicals and plant-derived ingredients in their products. They are naturally good for you and have extremely affordable prices. Their genuine desire is to replace toxic ingredients with real ones that work great for every skin type- including sensitive skin. They’re also eco-friendly, cruelty-free and offer mini samples to try out before purchasing the full product.
- 100% Pure
This brand aims to create the world’s most pure, organic and natural line of cosmetics and beauty products. Their skincare products contain antioxidants, vitamins and essential oils to help make your skin look as clear and healthy as possible. One of their best products is fruit-pigmented mascara.
- RMS Beauty
Their cosmetics are produced with raw, food grade and organic ingredients for a natural product that nourishes, moisturises and illuminates the skin. They want to transform the way women use makeup by creating products that are not only non-toxic, but that actually heals and nourishes the skin. A fan favourite of theirs is the concealer.
- W3LL PEOPLE
This brand stands for minimalism and natural, cruelty-free ingredients. Their products soothe and nourish your skin while also covering your blemishes and creating an even complexion. They are a very affordable brand with versatile products that can be used for different purposes. Their multi-cream stick can be used as a blush, lipstick or eyeshadow.
- Alima Pure
Their products are formulated with a minimal amount of ingredients and have the highest quality. They never use artificial or synthetic dyes. They are also cruelty-free, carbon-neutral and use recycled paper packaging. One of their bestsellers is their powder foundation that was created for all skin tones.
This brand offers products that contain only natural, healthy, minimally processed ingredients. They also use only recycled packaging and are cruelty-free. They mostly offer multi-use products which are great for those looking for minimalistic products.
Afterglow was the first certified gluten-free makeup line and offers a huge range of natural cosmetics with pure organic ingredients. They’re perfect for people with sensitive and problematic skin since they are very delicate on the skin. Each product is uniquely blended with natural pigments and minerals. They’re soy-free, cruelty-free, gluten-free and fair trade. Most of their products are also vegan.
- Kjaer Weis
A cosmetic line that combines minimalism and aesthetic while also creating makeup that works beautifully on the skin. They use only certified organic ingredients from all around the world in all of their products. Every batch of makeup is inspected by hand and contains zero parabens, synthetic fragrances, silicones or petrochemical emulsifiers.
- Bite Beauty
Most people forget that this incredible makeup line is natural and organic. Their lipsticks are super creamy and moisturising and come in many amazing colours. Their priority is high-quality products using the most organic ingredients.
- Lilah b.
Their brand is all about creating simple, multipurpose beauty products with clean formulas. None of the products contains gluten, sulfates or parabens and is only packed with beneficial ingredients such as aloe and botanicals. The products make your skin feel luxurious, nourished and all around amazing.
- Ilia Beauty
Ilia Beauty focuses on creating pure, organic products with bio-active botanicals that soothe the skin. They create lipsticks, eyeshadows and many multi-use products. One of their most popular products is the Fade Into You powder that feels super light and soft on the skin. It contains passion fruit and aloe leaf. Their shadows are also stunning and have the best pigmentation.
This brand offers the cleanest formulas while providing the most amazing quality. Their liquid lipsticks are formulated without any toxic, carcinogenic or hormone-disrupting ingredients. Their packaging is also chic and minimalist