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12.01.2015

(Almost) A Year Of Green Beauty

Earlier in spring I decided to transition into green beauty, and this post (and blog) has really been one year in the making.

I started documenting my journey with my #nihaogreenbeauty hashtag on Instagram and since then I have received questions and requests for recommendations from friends and strangers alike.

A year of green beauty

To be honest because there are so many amazing green beauty bloggers out there, getting started has been somewhat intimidating!

I figured out a good place to start would be what I have learnt on my journey so far.

1. Always read the fine print.

Gone are the days when I can walk into Sephora or Duane Reade and pick up products without studying the ingredient list. The cosmetic industry in the US is not regulated by FDA (read what they have to say here), which means that they do not test the products in the market and companies are not required to provided safety information to consumers. There is also the minefield of greenwashing companies that will mislead you into thinking they are 'natural' and 'organic' when they are not. Your best bet is learning to read the fine print.

The book No More Dirty Looks was a great eye-opener and provided useful information on what to look out for and how to clean up my beauty regime. I have the Think Dirty and Skin Deep apps on my phone so that I can scan and look up products on the go. My favorite subscription box Beauty Heroes also has a free pocket guide of 'Superhero' and 'Villian' ingredients that you can download onto your computer.

2. Take one step at a time.

I was overwhelmed to say the least when I realized that I would have to do a complete overhaul of everything I was using on my body. It would have been very expensive (and wasteful) to purge my home of all the toxic products I owned, so I broke it down into steps.

I started with my bath and body products, since they covered the biggest surface area. I then moved on to my hair products, and I will tell you that my hair did not like the green shampoos I was using at first. I walked around with a greaseball of a head for a week or two, but then it was like my hair woke up and realized how it was supposed to behave, and my hair has never felt better. The last (but most fun) part was my skincare and makeup products, and there are so many brands to try out.

There are online green beauty retailers like Spirit Beauty Lounge and Seed to Serum that offer trial/sample sizes that allow me to test the product before commiting to the full size, and I also love subscription services like Beauty Heroes and Petit Vour that do the expert curation for me.

3. Find your community.

The first person I reached out to was Ru from Short, Small and Sweet because we had a few things in common, and after e-mailing back and forth we became real-life friends when she travelled in from Boston for the indie Beauty Expo and I showed her around New York. It was at the same Expo I connected with Kasey from Plein Vanity and we recently spent an afternoon exploring West Village and hitting up some stores together.

I have also become fast friends with a lot of wonderful ladies on Instagram, many of whom have provided me with encouragement and inspiration, and I am thankful that our friendship often extends beyond the realm of green beauty.

4. Become a conscious consumer.

Once I embarked on the journey, I knew there was no turning back. I no longer am enticed by elaborate marketing claims or reach for the shiniest packaging, and every purchase becomes a thoughtful decision. I am more inclined to support small businesses run by families or female entrepreneurs and companies that look for ways to give back to their employees and communities.

I am far from perfect, but I am trying to become a more conscious consumer and learn to appreciate quality over quantity, and that sometimes less is more.


To my fellow green beauties, how has transitioning to green beauty changed your life?

10 comments

  1. I am so proud of you for starting your blog, Tricia!! So excited to see future blog posts :) Love, Alice from Wonderland Organics

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    1. I am excited to finally get started too :) Thank you for the support Alice!

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  2. Dear Tricia,

    It's been such a pleasure getting to know you in our amazing green beauty community! You've really been so wise and full of good tips and advice ever since we got to talking and I'm glad to call you a friend now! I loved your first post and can totally relate to the transition into green beauty. I find that I'm still working on transitioning some products, but I try to not be too strict on myself or else what fun is there left? Cheers to being more conscious consumers!

    Happy Holidays!

    Vanessa

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    1. Hey Vanessa!

      You are totally right- I tend to be very hard on myself at times and often forget to have fun :P Thank you for your sweet comments and HAPPY HOLIDAYS to you too! :)

      Love,
      Trish

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  3. hey Tricia! It's very fun to read you, finally :) I wish you the best with your blog and i'll read you :) Julie xx

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    1. Thank you Julie! I love reading your blog too :)

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  4. Great first post Tricia! I think you give excellent advice on how to make the switch from toxic to green and it only gets easier with so many beautiful brands and subscription services. The important thing is to remain discerning and just like you said, I am no longer tempted by grandiose marketing claims...I'm more like, uh huh just let me see the back of the package please! #totalpartypooper But this is what is needed. More discerning consumers who are unwilling to just accept things as they are. Education is power and I love how we can all learn from each other. Thank you for the lovely love link, now I'll go update mine and I look forward to reading many more posts! Congrats again Tricia! Xoxoxo

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    1. Aww thanks Nic-chan! I really needed the past year of learning and experimentation to be able to speak with conviction about going green and I am glad that I finally got this started! I am going to need you to recommend me some UK green beauty brands for my bestie who now lives in London and she has been convinced to make the switch to safer too :) We're starting a revolution here!

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  5. Loved your first post! You are a natural! Great job babe! Xoxoxo!

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    1. I am excited to read YOUR first post too! :)

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