LIKE THE GOOD millennial I am, I try to buy organic. My apartment is cluttered with crystals. I use mindful unironically. All to say, I’m fully on board the wellness wagon—except when it comes to my makeup.
It’s not just me. “This is a daily conversation in my office,” says my derm, Gary Goldenberg, MD. “Your skin is your largest organ, and chemicals in products could cause internal issues, so I recommend makeup made with natural ingredients.” Still, I’ve been reluctant, assuming I’d have to sacrifice too much. “Ten years ago, you’d be right—there wasn’t a lot out there,” says Christy Coleman, chief artistic officer at Beauty counter, “but green beauty is now an industry to be reckoned with.”
WHAT NATURAL REALLY MEANS
“Nothing,” explains Rose- Marie Swift, founder of RMS Beauty. Any brand, regardless of what is in its products, can make claims like all natural, botanical, and preservative-free (terms that are completely unregulated by the FDA)— a practice known as green washing. “It’s total confusion for the consumer,” says Swift, who suggests always looking at ingredient lists for the full truth.
INGREDIENTS TO AVOID
I asked Nneka Leiba, director of the Healthy Living Science Program at EWG, whose Skin Deep database has unbiased sa