Consciousness in Cosmetics

When it comes to beauty products, I’ll admit to using makeup on the daily to make myself look and feel confident, but I’m not crazy about it (ie. owning fifty shades of lipsticks and palettes of eyeshadow in all colours). I know absolutely nothing about skin care regimes and the works. All I have is a facial cleanser. And a decent collection of makeup.

But before I arrive at my current stash of cosmetics, it took me several years and numerous trials of the various types of makeup available over the counter, and a drastic turning point in my life; the day I threw all my makeup away (and renounced my faith in Maybelline, Silkygirl, and other drugstore makeup whathaveyous).

Sometime last year, I took out my makeup box, feverishly filtered the products containing difficult-to-pronounce, suspicious-sounding chemicals (which make the bulk of it), and solemnly swore to henceforth use only non-animal tested, vegan, organic beauty products. The lesser the amount of ingredients, and the more familiar they sound to me, the better it is, generally (same principle I adopt when it comes to food). So yes, basically I went bonkers and threw the entire box.

In my defence, my decision wasn’t completely irrational. It was sparked by some health articles sent to me by my SIL and after doing further research. It was about the various kinds of harmful chemicals typically found in most beauty products. I was aghast at the fact that 99% of the products we have been using contain something toxic and carcinogenic. With this realisation slowly sinking in, I hear these voices in my head – Humairah, what have you been putting on your face? What have you been slathering on your skin all these years? What exactly have your skin been absorbing and accumulating in your body? What have you put yourself into?!

Article after article, my disbelief escalated. Seriously? How can I be so careful about the ingredients that go inside my food, but so heedless as to what goes into my skin?

That’s when I became more conscious and discerning when it comes to my beauty product purchase decisions. Before being swept away by the promise of suspiciously miraculous benefits overnight or cleverly contrived celebrity endorsements, I ensure that the ingredients list is explicitly seen. After skimming through it, I ensure that it is non-animal tested, organic, and if not completely, contains as little synthetic stuff as it possibly can. (You can read all about it at the end of my post).

Shopping for makeup and beauty products, on the bright side, is less time-wasting simply because there are lesser choices to choose from. Sephora no longer got a hold on me – the bright lights spell H A Z A R D O U S everytime I stumble upon a corner in a mall. Call me paranoid, but I’ll save myself from lacing excessive toxic things on my skin in the name of beauty, especially after finding out that sometimes beauty can be skin (toxic) deep!

P.S. Bud Cosmetics (there’s an outlet in Mandarin Gallery and Paya Lebar Square) is the “organic and safer” version of Sephora. The products are free from all the nasties, but be prepared to part with more bucks than you would on makeup found in a drugstore. Still, I guess anything good is worth the investment!

P.P.S. It’s a personal choice, but if you’re interested to know more and subsequently take the oath to become an organic makeup convert, the articles I mentioned above can be found here, here, here, here, and here.

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