What is clean beauty – this is everything you need to know

How to be good to yourself and the environment?

How can beauty be clean?

Simply, clean beauty means cosmetics that don’t have any toxins or nasty ingredients. However, clean or green beauty goes beyond beauty products. 

Clean beauty is a philosophy and a way of life believing you can be respectful to yourself, your body and the environment. 

The first step in non-toxic skincare is understanding your products and what are they made of. In order to know all the ingredients, it’s important that all the labels are completely transparent meaning that every ingredient is listed. Once you know your ingredients, there are a few you should avoid. This includes parabens, sodium lauryl sulfate, synthetic fragrances, and dyes. Many of the toxic ingredients found in skincare are actually proven to be cancerous. 

On the other hand, clean beauty can still have synthetic ingredients, because lab-made is not necessarily a bad thing when it comes to cosmetics. Synthetic ingredients are safe just as natural but have in mind that natural is not always a guarantee to safe either.

Photo credit: Anita Austvika

What about natural, green and organic?

Sometimes words ‘clean’, ‘green’, ‘organic’ and ‘natural’ sound really confusing to many people. No wonder really, many beauty brands are playing around with these labels to convince us their products are better than they actually are.

As we mentioned about, just because something is clean it’s not necessarily natural.


Natural refers to plant-based ingredients (but they can still be toxic).


Green beauty shares similar, but not the same ideology with clean beauty. It believes that skincare needs to be sustainable and eco-friendly. In other words, no plastic packaging and unnecessary waste.


Organic, however, means those products are certified organic by a certain organisation. They are usually not tested on animals, sustainably sourced and made from organically farmed ingredients. 


Want to know the difference between vegan and cruelty/free? Need more information?

Head over to Issue 5 here and find all the details in a Clean Beauty feature written by Marion Rauzy.

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