My favorite Natural Beauties | Mary of Makeup by Mary B.
March 29, 2014 · 8 Comments
This 24 year old green beauty blogger caught my eye a few months back! Her awesome natural beauty blog features some of my favorite products and others which I am keen to try- I am always interested to see what she is trying next!
Mary of Makeup by Mary B.
Where are you from?
I grew up mainly in Portland, OR and I went to school in New Orleans. I currently live in Wisconsin.
Other than writing about non-toxic beauty, what do you do?
I aspire to be a primary care doctor. I’m in a bit of a limbo right now between finishing all my prerequisites and applying to medical school this summer. To answer that question literally, what I do is study!
How long have you been using non-toxic cosmetics?
I started using natural products in the summer of 2010, so about three and a half years.
Why or what led you to going all natural with your beauty products?
For me it all started with nanoparticles. I have a family friend who is an investigative journalist who focuses on public health issues. I majored in public health, so I talked to him a lot about what he was researching. He was working on several articles on nanoparticles, which are present in many forms of technology, including makeup and sunscreen. I was obsessed with makeup, so that gave me pause. I started doing research to see if I could find makeup brands that did not contain nanoparticles, and of course that was the tip of the iceberg. I found the EWG database, and was initially converted to an insane purist about products because of it. I cleared out pretty much all of my conventional products and replaced them with natural ones. Once I started to understand ingredients more, I realized that it wasn’t the smartest or most logical way to do things, because the EWG ranking system is not the end all to be all of product safety, but it was a starting point.
What changes and benefits have you noticed in beauty or health since making the switch?
Before I started using natural products, I did so little to take care of my skin. Now I use SPF every day, and I use natural oils that will hopefully benefit my skin in the long run. I can say for certain that my hair loves natural oils, and also washing it less frequently makes it much healthier. I wish I could say my skin magically never breaks out because I use natural products, but that isn’t the case. I am slowly learning what works for my skin, and I definitely believe there are some great natural alternatives to harsh acne prescriptions.
I think one of the biggest benefits of using natural products is the empowerment that comes with understanding more about what’s in your products.
What are your favorite, most recommended brands?
For makeup, I consistently grab for Honeybee Gardens, Zuzu Luxe, Ecco Bella, Silk Naturals and Organic Wear. I also love Sappho’s foundation and Suncoat’s pressed products. Out of any natural brand, I think Jane Iredale has the most complete line of products, and does the best job of equaling the performance of mainstream brands.
For skincare and bodycare there are so many that I have enjoyed! Acure, Weleda, Blissoma, Badger, Deep Steep, Graydon, Nourish Organic, and Frangipani, to name a few. I’m not huge on super high end stuff, but Marie Veronique Organics is one of the few lines that I think is truly worth the price tag.
For haircare, I really love Alaffia and Acure shampoos and conditioners. And if you don’t have hard water, I think shampoo bars like J.R. Liggett are the absolute best option.
What are 3 tips you can offer someone looking to go green with their beauty routine?
1. Read, read, read! I know it can be easier to just listen to someone tell you what is safe, but in order to define your own standards, you need to do your own research. It’s also very important to evaluate the sources that you use, because obviously not every page on the internet is to be trusted. I know searches on ingredients will often turn up a myriad of opinions with various biases, and it does get hard to untangle what is sensible at times. Still, there is so much to gain from reading about ingredients.
2. Shop at natural stores and green beauty sites. Though I recommend reading every ingredient before you buy anything, the work gets a little easier if you’re already shopping at the right places. Many “natural” brands at drugstores and department stores are green in marketing only.
3. Take it one step at a time. I mentioned in my own story that I pretty much threw everything out at once, but if I could do it again, I wouldn’t have focused more on one product at a time. There’s also so many sites where you can go to get ideas for what you need. Now more than ever, there are a ton of amazing natural beauty blogs with all sorts of reviews, recommendations and DIYs. I highly recommend using the wealth of information out there in the green beauty community.
Other than natural, non-toxic beauty what interests do you have?
As you can pick up from my career choice, I am very interested in healthcare, public health, and specifically health inequality. These are the issues that I care about the most. In terms of fun stuff, I really love home cooking, and I like to attempt to make really authentic ethnic dishes when I have the time. I try to keep a regular yoga habit, at varying degrees of success. I am a Portland Trailblazers fan, and I love basketball in general. I also like silly T.V. shows like Parks and Rec and Brooklyn Nine Nine. My family has always had basset hounds, so I am a bit obsessed with them. And like anyone who has lived there, I love New Orleans!
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Thank you so much to Mary for taking the time for this interview!