Why spend a small fortune on potentially toxic health and beauty products, when you can create your own with simple kitchen ingredients for half the price? Why buy your fashions from far away when you can get great products locally? Whether you’re going back to school or gearing up for chilly weather, September is the perfect time to evaluate your beauty and style regimens. A green beauty routine can not only reduce your carbon footprint, but parts of it can even double as fun indoor activities when the weather starts to get nippy. We’ve asked some of our favorite green beauty and lifestyle experts to share their sustainable beauty tips, so you can make the most of makeovers without breaking the bank or harming the environment.
One way to look better and feel better naturally is to make your own health and beauty products. Many traditional beauty products contain ingredients that are not particularly good for our bodies or our water supply. Making your own beauty products eliminates harsh chemicals and we end up with a lot fewer disposable bottles and tubes in our trash. Homemade beauty products are usually a lot cheaper than store bought ones as well! Get started with my homemade lemon and rosemary hand scrub.
— Diane Hoffmaster, Turning Back the Clock
Food nourishes not only our body, but also our skin. If you're looking for a hands-down best green beauty treatment, the lactic acid found in full-fat organic Greek yogurt works wonders for sloughing off dead skin cells and revealing brighter, clearer skin. Simply apply a generous layer to your face once a week, leaving it on for 10 to 30 minutes. Wipe off with a warm, soft cloth and enjoy the glow!
— Sara Snow, SaraSnow.com
Buy as many things that are locally made as possible. This doesn't just mean food — it applies to everything. Look out for those little boutiques in your nearest city that carry locally made jewelry and clothes. I also look for local and artisan cheese makers, bakers, and even chocolatiers because most of these vendors rely on their community to keep them in business. If I can't find something in my region, I at least try to buy U.S.-made whenever possible because it helps to lessen my rather-too-big footprint. The beauty of buying local also means that I get to meet vendors who are simply passionate about their craft — it's good energy all the way around!
— Sophie Uliano, Gorgeously Green
Nourish from the outside in. It may sound counterintuitive, but your body absorbs 60 percent of what you put on it. Seek out natural, chemically safe products that contain food-like ingredients such as green tea, coffee, pomegranate, cucumber, and kale.
— Paige Padgett, PaigePadgett.com
While you're cleaning out your medicine cabinet and makeup bag, don’t throw away all those used containers. Clean out the old containers and re-label and use them to hold your new, homemade cosmetics or other items around the house. You’ll be hanging on to some good storage solutions and keeping plastic and glass out of the landfill. A glass foundation jar, for example, could hold a bit of DIY sugar scrub, or a plastic wipes container could hold kids’ crayons. Another option is buying reusable containers that hold smaller individual containers of makeup like eyeshadow — allowing you to only buy what you use. Don’t forget to put recyclable containers you aren’t planning to use in the proper bin!
— Erin Pruss, Recyclebank