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We should care just as much as the products we put on our face as the food we put in our body. That’s because eco-friendly, clean beauty is better for the skin and for the environment. These products are made with organic, sustainable, recyclable materials and created using ethical workplace practices, so those making our favorite beauty products are working under safer conditions and making a living wage. If you’re looking for natural ingredients to put on your skin that make you feel beautiful, and if you are looking to reduce your carbon footprint, CircleAround has you covered. Here are our seven favorite clean beauty brands. Bonus: Each of these brands are women-led.
Founded by Rose-Marie Swift, RMS Beauty provides consumers with an elevated, versatile line of makeup products for those who want a full-range clean-beauty routine. According to its website, “Every RMS Beauty product is a versatile multi-tasker that’s approachable, uncomplicated, and intuitive to use.” This cuts down on makeup waste and overconsumption. The company’s ingredients page breaks down all the raw, food-grade organic materials used in its products.
Product to try: “UN” COVER UP Cream Foundation, $52
Why we like it: It comes in 16 shades and doesn’t feel heavy or greasy when applied.
Shaz and Kiks
Sisters Shaz Rajashekar and Kiku Chaudhuri’s beauty brand, Shaz and Kiks, was inspired by their Indian heritage and tradition of performing beauty rituals with friends and family. Shaz and Kiks’ line of hair washes and postwash oils provide users with products that make hair strong and healthy. These products are made using Indian ingredients such as ashwagandha, jamun (Indian blueberry), and hibiscus, which help remove dandruff and product buildup. The ingredients are also sourced from small, sustainable farms in India with ethical workplace practices, which helps stimulate the local economy.
Product to try: Scalp + Hair Prewash, $60
Why we like it: This product will make your hair feel incredible with help from 20 nutrient-dense Indian herbs, oils, and flowers.
Vamigas founders Christina Kelmon and Ann Dunning teamed up to create a line of body cleansers, oils, mists, and more using botanicals from regions such as Mexico, Brazil, and the Amazon rainforest. After all, many plants and flowers native to Latin America have medicinal properties. Vamigas offsets its carbon footprint by using recyclable glass bottles and minimizing materials used for transportation and shipping. The company also donates to other Latin American organizations.
Product to try: Rosa Mosqueta 100% Organic From Chile Face and Body Oil, $25
Why we like it: It's based on a recipe that’s been used and passed down through Chilean families for generations.
Aleena, Aleezeh, and Naseeha Khan are the founders of CTZN, an inclusive cosmetics line meant for people of any gender and skin tone. Products are 100 percent vegetarian, cruelty-free, paraben-free, and talc-free. CTZN’s specialty is a nude lipstick that comes in 25 shades, because, as the product description states, “Nude is not just beige for everyone — your nude shade is unique to your own complexion!” Customers can take a quiz on the site to be matched with their perfect nude shade and learn about makeup techniques for a diverse range of cultures from around the world on the company’s blog.
Product to try: NUDIVERSAL Lip Duo, $25
Why we like it: This item is the original inspiration for the line and helps you achieve the perfect nude lip look.
Water is often one of the main ingredients in skin care products. Sounds clean, right? According to UNICEF, water scarcity will worsen due to increasing demand, climate change, and global pollution. Botanical Republic, a Korean American skin care line, makes it a point to reduce the use of water in its products. “We try not to use water as a solvent,” founder Hannah Kim tells CircleAround. “Instead, we use hydrosols, also called distillates. Hydrosols are made by steam distillations of flowers, plants, and fruits.” Moisturizers, serums, and more use glass bottles, forest-certified paper, and soy-based inks, and are never tested on animals. This helps ensure that every part of your beauty routine is clean from start to finish.
Product to try: Radiant Hydrating Toner, $28
Why we like it: It helps balance your skin using only four ingredients, including rose and aspen bark, so you know the company is honoring its commitment to stay clean.
In Urdu, noshaba means “water of life,” a word Omosefe Ozigbo kept returning to as she traveled through Morocco, learning from the nomad lifestyle. Today, she owns a luxury skin care company of the same name. Ozigbo primarily uses ingredients she sources from her own garden, with the help of other botanicals sustainably sourced from Morocco. As a result, product batches are small and sell out quickly. Those lucky enough to experience Noshaba products for themselves can’t seem to get enough of the natural feeling.
Product to try: Waters of Root Flora renewing face tonic, sold out
Why we like it: It’s alcohol-free and uses a mixture of botanical hydrosols to diminish blemishes, hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone, and acne.
Charlotte Mensah’s Manketti Oil line
Charlotte Mensah’s experiences traveling to places such as London and Ghana inspired her original line of hair care products designed especially for Afro/mixed and all curly-hair types. Her shampoos, conditioners, and oils all use sustainably sourced manketti nut and ximenia oils, which are high in natural acids and vitamin E. An added benefit is how these ingredients are already eco-friendly: Manketti nut trees produce fruit easily, don’t require a lot of water, and can be sourced from local farms in Africa.
Product to try: Manketti Oil Conditioner, $32
Why we like it: It helps hydrate hair and also helps protect it from harmful UV rays.