Going green is fashionable. I’m not just talking about recycling or investing in sustainable products. People – and women in particular – are growing more concerned about what’s in the beauty products they use.
As well as not wanting to aggravate lingering skin conditions, they don’t want to risk stoking up health problems for later in life. They are looking for safe, natural makeup products that will deliver high levels of pigmentation while offering all-day (or night) performance.
Going through cancer treatment has been a cathartic experience. It’s made me re-evaluate everything from what I eat to the products I put on my body. During recent radiotherapy, I was told to avoid bathing and moisturising products that contain sodium lauryl sulphate. Let me tell you, that was no easy task. The stuff is in everything – even products that have ‘clean’ or ‘zero’ in their branding. I ended up showering with pure aloe vera gel for five weeks.
It got me thinking about the chemicals used in hair dyes and makeup – and whether or not I should be avoiding most of those too. As I come to the end of a truly gruelling 18 months of treatment, I want to make some positive changes that will help me going forward and reduce the chances of a recurrence. Cutting out parabens, gluten and other potential nasties like mineral oil and phthalates is a priority.
My quest for a truly ‘clean’ makeup brand led me (well, my cash) to… New York!
Natural Makeup From Tarte™
Before I conducted some research into clean beauty brands, I’d already heard of tarte (officially with a lowercase ‘t’). I had seen some of its natural, free-from makeup products on a well-known shopping channel. My impression then was that they were over-priced. They are actually not, which came as a bit of a revelation. As well as not containing all the potentially harmful ingredients outlined above, the range is also free from triclosan – an antibacterial agent found in everything from soaps and toothpaste to foundation. Used as a hand scrub in hospitals for 40 years, concerns have been raised that widespread use in every-day products could lead to antimicrobial resistance.
Founded by Maureen Kelly in New York two decades ago, tarte’s cruelty-free range was launched with a simple cheek stain. It took off. Now the brand offers distinct collections, including Amazonian clay, tartelettes, the trademarked shape tape and Maneater. As well as boasting a huge array of gorgeous makeup, tarte has successfully dipped its toe into the skincare market.
Unfortunately, the product I set my heart on – a limited edition collector’s set in a magnetic box with interchangeable palettes – is not available in the UK (unless you want to risk buying a secondhand one for 45 quid on eBay). The set contains 2 blushers, a highlighter, a bronzer, loads of eyeshadows and a bottom drawer containing a mini Maneater mascara, Busy Gal lip gloss and a magnetic travel compact. Trust Pilot reviews complaining of slow shipping made me hesitant to order it direct from the US. However, it was on special offer for £20 and temptation got the better of me. I am so glad it did!
This purchase took a couple of weeks to arrive but did not disappoint. Beautifully packaged, the set is absolutely huge for the price. The rose gold palette case has satin tabs and a large, branded mirror. The pigmentation of the eyeshadows is outstanding and the metallic shades are the best I’ve come across. They are solid, glimmering blocks of colour. I am actually in love with this set and will use all the makeup it contains. The fact that the products are made from natural ingredients is a real bonus, especially when you consider the high quality.
Buy Free-From Makeup In The UK
If you don’t want to wait weeks for natural makeup, here’s a selection of goodies available in the UK.