I’m pissed off. Like really, really pissed off. For about the last year my frustration with the low performance of natural beauty products has been mounting. And I’m near breaking point. Plus I feel guilty every time I choose performance over nature. I just don't want to feel guilty anymore. Here’s a bit of a rant, er I mean a list of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to natural beauty products: (Formulators take note!)
Sulphate-free shampoos that don’t wash my hair – whether I wash my hair with sulphates once every 5 days or without sulphates every single day, I don’t think that I’m creating a big toxic overload with the former option. My scalp has never been irritated by using sulphates, in fact sulphates are what actually get it clean. If anything, I have the reverse problem which is not getting the oil out in the first place. And I’ve tried that whole stop washing your hair completely thing and you’ll re-program your sebum glands to have a naturally balanced oil production. It didn’t work for me.
Aluminium-free deodorants – ok, so switching from anti-perspirant to deodorant was already a step in the sticky/sweaty direction but then don’t add insult to injury by making completely ineffective “natural” deodorants. I’m a lady. I don’t want to smell. I don’t enjoy smelling myself. Others around me don’t enjoy smelling me. I will take aluminium and "suspected" neurotoxicity any day over the shame of being “that” smelly person. Seriously scientists besides torturing lab animals (which I'm not a big fan of) can we get something more conclusive on how aluminum affects human beings??? Please?! Cultural note- I work with a lot of Europeans so I’m already in a culture where deodorant is socially accepted over antiperspirant. But alas, all of the natural deodorants that I’ve tried: Still. Not. Good. Enough.
Petro-chemical-free lip glosses that are too liquidity and lack pigment – (I’m looking at you Burts Bees Super Glossy Lip Shine, Lavera Lip Gloss, Neals Yard Remedies, et al tsk tsk). Lipgloss and mascara are my beauty staples. I don’t care about anything else. If I’m going to leave my house, I at least need these two products. Too bad with the exception of Bare Minerals Natural Lip gloss I haven’t found any decent petro-chemical free lip glosses. In the last year I’ve been through 8 tubes of Bare Minerals and shelled out £112 ($180) for the privilege considering they are £14 a pop and last a few months (plus I have to have at least a few of them on the go for a variety of shades!) That’s a hell of a lot of money just to keep a lady in her daily lipgloss. Plus no matter how dark and red a shade I buy, it always winds up looking practically nude on my lips, or lasts all of 5 minutes. Help me beauty formulators! I can't exclusively buy just Bare Minerals (no matter how much they would love me to).
Complete lack of any decent hair styling products – seriously, there is nothing in this category. No styling gels, creams, hairsprays, serums that are nice to use and effective. It’s like hair styling products play poor cousin to the sulphate-free shampoos. I mostly wear my hair naturally wavy, sometimes blow it out straight, and sometimes put it in Velcro rollers for big, sexy curls. I’m not trying to make my hair do something totally unrealistic that it wasn’t designed to do. I’m just asking for some hair products to make it look a teensy-tiny bit shinier and to help hold it in place just a little longer. Am I reaching for the stars here?
Loose mineral eye shadow – I love mineral makeup generally speaking. However I hate loose eye shadow (as opposed to compact eye shadow). In my bathroom I have no fewer than 15 pots of Bare Minerals loose. Luckily as the reigning Queen of mineral makeup they have also launched Bare Minerals Ready 2.0 eyeshadow. I really need to try this. Jane Iredale do a decent mineral compact eye shadow but I’m greedy. I want more selection please!
So, am I angry? You betcha! Have I given up completely on natural beauty products? Not entirely. I still in my heart of hearts think that beauty companies can keep doing better. It's up to us as consumers to tell them what we want through what we buy! So, I'll keep buying and testing the most naturally formulated products and reporting on them here. I would love to hear your views too! What natural beauty products have you tried? What have you loved? What have you hated?