• Beauty

What is clean beauty?

And why it’s here to stay

In partnership with The Natives Co.

Clean beauty has many definitions depending on who you talk to, which brand you are researching and which expert you ask. It’s a buzzword often used in the same sentence as green, natural or organic beauty, which is where the confusion begins. What do all of these terms mean? Which brands can we trust? Is there a regulating body to look to for all the answers? The response is; it’s complicated. 

What we do know is, the global natural cosmetics market is estimated to be worth $54billion by 2027, so whether it’s the Goop effect, or common sense, the demand for clean skincare and cosmetics has officially shifted from niche to mainstream.

“Clean Beauty isn’t a trend, it’s the future of beauty, and we as consumers are empowered to vote with our purchases and by making good choices about the products we use in skincare, makeup and bodycare,’’ says skincare specialist and The Natives Co. co-founder Vanessa Noy.

So, what is clean beauty?

According to Vanessa, clean beauty encompasses products that are mindfully created and produced using ethically sourced natural and, or organic ingredients. They are non-toxic so trialled and tested on humans to prove efficacy, free from cruel animal testing. 

“Clean beauty refers to eco-friendly ingredient sourcing and manufacturing that typically encompass the three pillars of sustainability; economic, environmental and social equality,’’ Vanessa says.

“At the heart of clean beauty is a core ethos where products are sourced, formulated and produced with the highest regard to our health and the environment.”

Clean beauty by The Natives Co.

Environment and health come first in formulating clean skincare and beauty products

For Geoffrey Christiansen, co-founder of Madame Gabriela Beauty, safety and transparency are at the heart of their clean beauty philosophy.

“All our ingredients are part of the non-toxic European regulatory body, the most comprehensive guide of ingredients in cosmetics to date,’’ he says.

“We disclose all our ingredients to our customers and we are in constant consultation with our chemist and lab to assure that the ingredients used will not cause toxicity in our bodies.’’

Lynn Power co-founder and CEO of natural haircare brand Masami agrees.

“Clean beauty, for us, it’s about creating products that are good for you and good for the environment,’’ she says.

Does clean beauty actually work?

With 20 years of experience in the beauty industry and a lifelong fascination with beauty, Vanessa says clean beauty has moved away from the essential oils and home remedies stigma it once had.

“Many of the brands we advocate have spent years in research and development, pioneering bio-active complexes that work,’’ Vanessa says.

“They undertake extensive clinical studies and trials and are socially, economically and environmentally conscious while delivering incredible products.”

It’s also worth noting many ingredients found in mainstream products are used as fillers or surfactants and have no health benefits for your skin.

“A pivotal point for me on my personal journey was understanding that so many of the ingredients in products I had been using actually had no benefit to the health of my skin, they were simply there to improve the product’s hand feel or as a cheap filler,’’ Vanessa says.

Vanessa Noy Natives Co co-founder

The Natives Co. co-founder and beauty expert Vanessa Noy

“Natural skincare is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. Your skin has a renewal process that occurs every 30 days. It takes up to 60 days to really see the benefits of natural products. 

“The right natural products feed the skin, they work with the microbiome and do not disrupt the barrier, the result is calm, clear, refined and radiant skin. Strong skin can ward off environmental aggressors that cause premature ageing and skin concerns, strong skin is more hydrated and balanced and hydrated skin looks younger!”

Vanessa’s top 3 products 

Vanessa says: “I have a very streamlined skincare regime, I know what works for me and I also select them not only based on their performance but the way they smell. That sensorial part of the ritual is everything to me.

  1. VENN Synbiotic Defense Mist 

Misting is very underrated, but so good for the skin! This mist boosts my skin’s hydration so it looks plump and youthful. I use it twice a day so I can’t be without it.

Venn Synbiotic Defense Mist

2. Flower & Spice Beauty Masquerade Customizable Clay Treatment 

I am religious when it comes to my weekly mask. This mask leaves my skin clean and flawless, and I love the ingredients used in this formulation. I actually see the benefits for days after I have used it.

Flower & Spice Beauty Masquerade Customizable Clay Treatment

3. Masami Mekabu Shampoo & Conditioner 

This brand changed my perception and love of natural hair care. Formulated with Mekabu seaweed and Aloe Vera, it’s super hydrating without weighing my hair down. My hair is like silk and it has helped my scalp health – I used to suffer from an itchy scalp, which I no longer do after using Masami.  

Masamai haircare

Related; Natural Alternatives to retinol 

Related; I tried a period cup and this is what happened 

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