10 Eco-Chic Beauty Buys Under $10

Cheap Organic Beauty Products. Impossible?

While toxin-free cosmetics are a beautiful, safe and healthy option, they rarely come cheap. This is often due to the nature of the ingredients used, and the costs associated with manufacturing organic products. But thankfully going green doesn’t always have to cost a fortune, as these natural cosmetics and cheap organic beauty products go to show.

1. EcoCare Organic Apple & Honey Facial Cleansing Wipes, $8.99

ecocare face wipes

Ideal for oily and combination skin, these refreshing face wipes will leave your skin feeling clean, soft, and supple. With crisp apple, luscious honey, and antioxidant-rich green tea, these certified organic cotton wipes nourish and soothe while they cleanse.

2. Dr Bronner’s Pure-Castile Bar Lavender Soap, $7.95

dr bronners soap

With a soothing blend lavender and lavandin oils, this castile soap bar will calm the mind while it cleanses your body. Lovingly created with fair trade ingredients and organic hemp oil, it won’t leave your skin feeling dry or tight. The product is also 100% biodegradable and features 100% post-consumer recycled packaging. 

3. Sukin Cream Cleanser, $9.95

sukin cream cleanser

This gentle cream cleanser contains a beautiful blend of essential oils and botanical extracts to remove makeup and grime as it nourishes the skin. The sulphate free formula features lush ingredients like rosehip, avocado, aloe vera, and nettle to leave skin feeling clean and refreshed.

4. Vanessa Megan Lip Balm, $9.95 

vanessa megan lip balm

With nourishing certified organic shea butter, cocoa butter and bees wax, this lush balm soothes and hydrates dry, chapped lips. The clever formula seals in moisture and protects your lips from the elements, to ensure your pout looks gorgeous all year round.

5. Essano Gentle Facial Cleansing Micellar Water, $5.99

essano micellar water

If you haven’t experienced the magic that is micellar water, this product is a gorgeous and ultra-affordable way to try it out. Active micellar water molecules latch onto makeup, dirt and impurities on your skin, and gently remove them to leave your face feeling cleansed and refreshed. The formula supports your skin’s natural pH balance, and soothes with certified organic rosehip oil and aloe vera.

6. Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer, $9.95

burts-bees-lip-shimmer

Give your lips a subtle touch of colour and a gorgeous glossy sheen with this nifty conditioning lip balm. Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmers come in a range of flattering colours and are made from 100% natural ingredients. This bad boy will keep your kisser hydrated and happy throughout the day with nourishing ingredients like shea butter, cocoa butter, strawberry and apricot seed oil, and soothing rosemary.

7. Comvita Natural Whitening Toothpaste, $9.95

comvita toothpaste

This natural toothpaste alternative helps brighten your smile while also cleaning and your teeth. The formula doesn’t contain any nasty chemical bleaches or harsh abrasives – instead baking soda gently polishes and whitens teeth while essential oils freshen your breath naturally. Xylitol, a natural substance found in birch trees, helps prevent stain build-up with regular brushing.

8. PearlBar Bamboo Charcoal Toothbrush, $8.95

pearlbar charcoal toothbrush

The perfect accompaniment to natural toothpaste, this 100% biodegradable toothbrush is an environmentally-friendly alternative to plastic toothbrushes. The bristles are infused with charcoal, which acts as a natural cleaning, absorbing and antibacterial agent. As well as effectively cleaning your teeth, charcoal also acts as a natural tooth whitener.

9. 100% Pure Bright Eyes Eye Mask, $9.95

100-per-cent-pure-bright-eyes-eye-mask

If you suffer from puffy eyes and dark circles, give this natural eye mask a whirl. Made with organic aloe, plant cellulose, and green coffee, this clever mask helps to de-puff and brighten tired eyes. The hydrating natural formula will gradually absorb into you skin, and it feels incredibly cooling and refreshing on the delicate eye area.

10. LAVANILA Mini Rollerball Fragrance, $10 

lavanila rollerball

For a crisp $10 you can trial LAVANILA’s range of delectable natural scents, which combine warm Madagascar vanilla with pure essential oils. Choose from Pure Vanilla, Vanilla Coconut, Vanilla Lavender, Fresh Vanilla Lemon, and Vanilla Grapefruit.

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The Dirty Dozen: 12 Common Toxins Found In Beauty Products

While there are countless artificial ingredients and toxic nasties hiding in most mainstream beauty products, there are 12 in particular that give cause for major concern.

Often referred to as The Dirty Dozen, these ingredients and chemicals have been shown to be highly questionable with potentially devastating health implications.

Grab a pen and paper and familiarise yourself with these common toxins so that you can steer clear of them next time you’re shopping for cosmetics and toiletries.

1. PARABENS

Found in basically every mainstream beauty product you can get your mitts on, parabens (which usually appear on the ingredients list with prefixes like Butyl, Isobutyl, Propyl, Methyl, Ethyl etc.) are artificial preservatives that are added to products to help prevent bacteria and mould growth.

Parabens are a concern because they can mimic our own natural hormones, which can lead to endocrine disruption; a condition which has been linked to some types of cancer. Parabens have also been associated with skin irritation, dermatitis, rosacea, increased sun damage, headaches and dizziness.

2. ARTIFICIAL FRAGRANCE

If that department store beauty product you’re testing has even the slightest hint of a scent to it, chances are it’s loaded with synthetic fragrance. Usually listed as ‘parfum,’ or ‘fragrance,’ on the ingredients label, an artificial fragrance can have dozens – even hundreds – of ingredients.

It’s impossible to know exactly what chemicals have been used to create that specific scent, because beauty companies aren’t legally required to reveal their fragrance compositions. Artificial and synthetic fragrances have been linked to headaches, dizziness, skin irritation, nausea and endocrine disruption.

3. PHTHALATES

Found in some of the most popular beauty products on the market (including perfumes, nail polishes, and hairsprays), common phthalates include Diethyl Phthalate and Dibutyl Phthalate.

Phthalates are a type of plasticising chemical that’s used to make a product’s texture more spreadable or pliable, or alternatively to make a product adhere to the skin.

Phthalates are known endocrine disruptors, and they have been linked to lung, kidney and liver damage, and can potentially cause birth defects as well.

4. SLS & SLES

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES) are found in products that lather up (think shampoo, foaming cleansers, body wash, liquid soap, bubble bath and even toothpaste) and are a type of foaming agent.

They are incredibly harsh ingredients and can often be found in industrial cleaning products like engine degreasers. Both SLS and SLES irritate the skin by stripping away it’s natural protective barrier, and have also been linked to allergies, eye problems, and hair growth issues.

5. TRICLOSAN

An antibacterial and anti-fungal agent, Triclosan is added to common toiletries like hand soaps, deodorants, toothpaste, hand sanitiser, and cosmetics.

While the idea of a germ-fighting additive might not sound bad in theory, Triclosan has been linked to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria (known as ‘superbugs’) and also ends up in our water systems where it can affect the aquatic environment.

In addition, Triclosan has also been linked to endocrine disruption which can lead to serious medical conditions.

6. PETROLEUM & MINERAL OIL

Petroleum and petroleum-derived substances including mineral oil and paraffin are commonly found in lip balms, lipsticks, lip glosses, body oils, moisturisers, body balms, hair gels and conditioners.

Petroleum is a type of petrochemical that’s derived from crude oil, and it can cause a wide array of skin problems as it coats and clogs your pores and leaves a slick barrier on top of the skin.

In addition to preventing the skin from ‘breathing,’ petroleum, mineral oil and paraffin can also be contaminated with all kinds of toxins and impurities.

7. FORMALDEHYDE

Listed on the ingredients label as Imidazolidinyl Urea, Diazolidinyl Urea, Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate, Quaternium, DMDM Hydantoin, Nitropropane, Bronopol, Oxaldehyde and Glyoxal, Formaldehyde is commonly found in nail polishes and hair straightening treatments.

It’s been banned from use in cosmetics in some countries and is a known carcinogen that has been linked to lung disease (including lung cancer), lymphoma and leukaemia.

It makes it’s way into the body through fume inhalation, and can cause eye, nose, throat and lung irritation, and has the potential to accumulate in the body which can lead to toxicity.

8. HYDROQUINONE

Also known as Quinol, Benzene and Diol, Hydroquinone inhibits melanin production and can be found in some skin lightening creams and anti-pigmentation products like brightening serums and skin whitening treatments.

It has been banned in some countries, and the FDA has stated that Hydroquinone may be carcinogenic, as studies have linked it to the development of tumours and leukaemia. It has also been linked to skin sensitivity and increased sun damage, skin irritation and organ toxicity.

9. MERCURY 

While it’s not commonly found in Australian-made beauty products, mercury can be lurking in certain mascaras, acne treatments and skin creams, along with ear and eye drops.

It will be listed on the ingredients label as Calomel, Mercurous Chloride, Thimerosal, Merthiolate, Mercurio, or Mercuric.

Mercury exposure can lead to mercury poisoning, symptoms of which can include tremors, numbness and tingling, irritability and depression, memory problems, vision and hearing problems, and organ damage – including brain damage.

10. PROPYLENE GLYCOL

You’ll find this anti-freeze solvent in brake and hydraulic fluids, along with some of the most common personal care and toiletry products like deodorant, baby wipes, toothpaste, moisturisers, shampoo, and run-of-the-mill cosmetics.

Propylene Glycol has the potential to cause serious health issues, including central nervous system disruption and organ damage. It has also been linked to hives, eczema, and allergic reactions.

11. COAL TAR DYES

Used primarily as a colouring agent in hair dyes and makeup, and also an active ingredient in some anti-dandruff shampoos, coal tar dyes will appear in the ingredients list with names like Aminophenol, Phenylenediamine and Diaminobenzene.

Coal tar dyes are known to be carcinogenic, and in some instances might also be contaminated with toxic heavy metals. In addition to this, coal tar dyes have also been shown to cause skin irritation and sensitivity.

12. BHA & BHT

Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) and Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) are synthetic antioxidants, which are added to cosmetics like lipstick, moisturiser, and even baby products like nappy creams to extend the product’s shelf life.

They are suspected carcinogens and they also have the potential to cause endocrine disruption and have the potential to cause thyroid, kidney, and liver issues.

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The Best Natural Mascara

We seriously hope you’ll never find yourself stranded on a desert island – but if fate was cruel enough to land you in that very scenario with only one beauty product in your emergency kit, chances are you’d want it to be mascara, right?

It’s no surprise this little lash-enhancing wonder is a makeup must-have in the eyes of most women – just one swipe of a quality mascara creates sensual, fluttery, come-hither peepers Cleopatra would be jealous of.

Alas with the good comes the bad.

The majority of mainstream mascaras you’ll find at pharmacies, supermarkets, and department stores are loaded with potentially toxic ingredients like aluminium powder, parabens, formaldehyde, petrolatum, phthalates and dioxane; ingredients which have been linked to a varying number of illnesses and unpleasant side effects, along with endocrine disruption and cancer.

Thankfully there are a myriad of healthy, natural alternatives to chemical-laden mascara formulas. Here we showcase five of our favourites lash-lovers that will keep your peepers looking as eye-catching as ever…

1. W3LL PEOPLE Expressionist Bio Extreme Mascara

This bad boy creates big, bold, fluffy lashes in five seconds flat and nourishes your lashes as well thanks to its lush botanical blend.

The formula is free from any nasties like petroleum and aluminium, and it contains pure mineral pigments create the blackest of black lashes, while the high-tech brush lengthens, separates and volumises even the thinnest and shortest of lashes.

W3LL PEOPLE Expressionist Bio Extreme Mascara

2. Ere Perez Volumising Waterproof Mascara

If you’re looking for a mascara that has your back from dawn til dusk and beyond, look no further than this clever offering from Ere Perez.

Formulated with avocado and mamey oils, this nourishing mascara gives your lashes the definition you crave, and is the perfect option if you’re headed to the beach or to the gym – or just for days when you want a reliable mascara that works as hard as you do.

Ere Perez Volumising Waterproof Mascara

3. Inika Mineral Mascara

Recently reformulated to give you even better results, Inika’s Vegan Mineral Mascara in Velvet Black is a super gentle option for those who wear contacts or have sensitive eyes, but still want flutter-worthy lashes.

The dual-function ‘double-Z’ brush has two different edges for lengthening and volumising, and the rich velvety formula coats lashes to create an amped-yet-natural finish without any clumping or flaking.

Inika Mineral Mascara

4. Lavera Deep Darkness Mascara

Perfect for those looking to deepen their natural lash colour, Lavera Deep Darkness Mascara defines and volumises your lashes and ups the drama with its intensely rich black hue.

Rich mineral pigment create deep colour, while the extra-large power brush captures even the shortest and thinnest of lashes, giving your peepers the ultimate boost.

Lavera Deep Darkness Mascara

5. Ere Perez Natural Almond Oil Mascara

If you’re after a subtle, natural mascara for everyday wear, this best-selling cult classic has you covered.

The pioneering formula is smudge-proof, water-resistant and is made using the highest quality organic almond oil which helps to nourish and strengthen your lashes. It’s also gentle on sensitive peepers, and is a great option for those who wear contact lenses.

Ere Perez Natural Almond Oil Mascara

A NOTE ON MASCARA HYGIENE…

Our eyes are very susceptible to infection, and mascara is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria because the brush wand comes into contact with your eyes and is then pushed back into the tube along with oxygen. Minimise your risk of conjunctivitis (and other nasty infections!) by changing your mascara every three months.

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Neo Deo: The Natural Deodorant Revolution

ALUMINIUM IN DEODORANT

You apply deodorant every day, but have you ever stopped to wonder what ingredients are lurking inside? Unlike natural deodorant, most mainstream antiperspirant deodorants contain aluminium compounds, which block your sweat glands to inhibit sweating.

While there’s no question that antiperspirants are effective at reducing sweat and body odour, aluminium in deodorant is a cause for concern. The aluminium-based compounds used in these products are made up of extremely small molecules that have the potential to be absorbed into your body.

Aluminium accumulation in the body has been linked to breast cancer, liver toxicity and Alzheimer’s disease; which is extremely worrying when you consider how many people use aluminium-based deodorants on a daily basis.

Read on to learn more about the potential dangers of regular antiperspirant, and why you should make the switch to natural deodorant today.

OTHER TOXINS IN DEODORANT

In addition to aluminium, most antiperspirant sprays and roll-on deodorants contain many artificial additives and chemicals that are known to be toxic. Some of these include:

  • Phthalates. These are plasticising chemicals that make cosmetic products adhere to our skin, and they are often found in heavily fragranced beauty products like perfumes and deodorants. Phthalates are known endocrine disruptors (meaning they muck around with our hormone levels), and scientific studies have linked them to reduced testosterone and lower sperm quality in men.
  • Parabens. These are used as a cheap preservative. While they’re currently considered ‘safe’ for use in personal care products and cosmetics, parabens can mimic our own natural hormones which can lead to endocrine disruption – a condition which has been linked to some types of cancer. Parabens have also been associated with headaches, dizziness, skin irritation and dermatitis.
  • Triclosan. This is an antibacterial agent that’s often used in deodorants and antiperspirants. “Triclosan has been shown to interfere with thyroid signalling,” says Chey Birch, founder of popular natural deodorant and skincare brand Black Chicken. “Australia’s regulators said there is no immediate cause for public concern, but in the very same report they also stated that triclosan may be bio-accumulative, persistent in the environment, and very toxic to aquatic organisms. Products for human use that contain more than 0.3% triclosan must be labelled as poison.”

Perhaps what’s most worrying is the fact that tighter government regulations, stricter labelling laws, and more extensive research into the safely of these chemicals are pitted against the enormous profits earned by the big global businesses that dominate the personal care and cosmetic industries.

This is something that Chey finds very troubling. “When it’s not possible to prove beyond doubt the toxic load of a chemical, then the ingredient is deemed ‘safe to use’ – at least until accumulated evidence and hindsight proves otherwise,” says Chey, “and by then, for some of us, the damage is done.”

SWEAT ISN’T THE ENEMY

Despite what those antiperspirant TV commercials might lead you to believe, sweat is actually a healthy – and necessary – process. “When we sweat, it’s the body’s way of getting rid of toxins and waste so your whole system can run more efficiently,” says Chey. “Sweating also helps us maintain a healthy immune system because it reduces the amount of waste and toxins the body has to deal with – and of course, it helps regulate our body temperature too.”

Sweat is the body’s way of getting rid of toxins

As it turns out, sweat itself isn’t even the main cause of body odour – that particular (dis)honour goes to bacteria. “Body odour is caused when bacteria break down certain proteins in underarm sweat,” says Chey. Luckily, there are some fantastic toxin-free deodorants on the market that are not only safe and gentle on your pits, but they also neutralise bacteria naturally, helping to prevent body odour from developing.

HOW TO SWITCH TO NATURAL DEODORANT

Most people find it easy to make the switch from antiperspirant to a natural deodorant, but sometimes there can be a bit of a transitional period. “Occasionally, for first time users, it can trigger a pit detox,” says Chey. “The body begins to release all those clogged toxins as your pores relax and do their thing – body odour can be stronger than usual at this time.”

You can help speed up this detox process by working up more of a sweat and drinking plenty of water to flush out the toxins. “Eat well and maybe cut back your alcohol and caffeine intake until your system regains its natural balance,” suggests Chey.

NATURAL DEODORANTS WE LOVE

If you’re ready to make the switch to natural deodorant, a deodorant paste is a great starting point. To apply, you simply use a pea-sized amount of product and warm it up between your fingers before massaging it into your underarms using a slow, circular motion. Black Chicken is currently the most popular natural deodorant brand in Australia, and it’s also friendly on the wallet when you consider that one tub will last you for weeks on end.

black chicken deodorant axilla

Here at THE ECO EDIT we’re big fans Erica Brooke’s range of unisex deodorant pastes. The pastes contain nourishing, soothing ingredients like shea butter and vitamin E to keep your pits happy and hydrated, and there are a variety of scents to choose from like wildflowers, neroli and vanilla. Erica also makes a double-strength formula, which is perfect for gym days. The brand also offers an unscented version for those with sensitive pits.

erica-brooke-wildflowers-deodorant-creme

If you’re currently using an aerosol or spray-on deodorant, we highly recommend trying Indah No. 5 Active Spray Deodorant. They’ve cleverly used colloidal silver instead of aluminium, which is blended with a mixture of powerful herbal actives that will keep you smelling fresh. As a bonus, the gorgeous scent of this deodorant spray is so nice that you can use it as a natural perfume too.

indah active spray natural deodorant

If you’re more of a roll-on girl (or guy) and prefer a hands-free deo, we recommend Madara Bio-Active Deodorant. This little beauty comes with an easy-to-use roller ball applicator, which makes it perfect for popping in your gym bag – or for days when you just want a fuss-free deodorant option.

madara-bioactive-deodorant

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