• Alyssa Piperis

4 Natural, Cruelty-Free Beauty & Hygiene Products I Use Every Day

Today I want to talk about four of my current favorite beauty and hygiene products that I’ve been using every single day—from coconut oil and toner to toothpaste and deodorant.

I previously mentioned in a makeup-related post that I recently made the decision to only buy natural and cruelty-free products, at least where possible. And thankfully, I haven’t had much trouble. Between CVS, Target, and TJ Maxx, I have a lot of options!

As I get older, learn more about my skin, and do my research on good vs. bad products and ingredients, the more I realize how important it is to not only feed our bodies with healthy foods and nutrients, but to feed our skin and brush our teeth with healthy products that are good to us. Once I realized that most products out there contain harmful ingredients and toxins, I was like, “How the heck did I go so long without knowing this? And, how is it legal for these products to be sold and marketed to children and teens?” It’s bananas!

If you take a look at the products you use to wash your face, wash your hair, brush your teeth, and freshen your pits (didn’t know how else to phrase that :)), you’ll come to find that there are tons of ingredients you can’t pronounce, and too many ingredients in general. You’re dumping and rubbing toxins onto yourself, which essentially means you’re putting toxins inside yourself. After all, what we put on our bodies goes in our bodies. It’s kind of scary when put like that, and it should be. Consider that phrase some tough love to wake you up. Most companies seem to make money by telling us we need their harmful products that have pretty labels and smell nice, but if we actually stop to read the ingredients and look up what they are, we realize we’re harming ourselves.

I could go on about that, but I think you get the point. I urge you to do your own research and take a closer look at the products you currently have and are looking to buy. You don’t have to flip a switch right away and get rid of everything you have at once, but if you haven’t already, start replacing your toxic products with natural products. If you go for natural AND cruelty-free, that’s even better!

Okay, let’s get to it!

Product: 100% Extra Virgin Coconut Oil Company: Shea Moisture Where I Bought It: TJ Maxx Price I Paid: $6.99 (as opposed to $12.99 on their website)

My Personal Thoughts: I love Shea Moisture as a company and what they stand for in terms of their desire to create ethical and affordable products. And I love that I can find their products at TJ Maxx for an unbeatable price! I recently said a big ole “peace out” to makeup remover wipes and moved onto coconut oil, and I want to dive deeper into the “why” in hopes that at least one person can learn from my skincare mistakes. So, why do I use coconut oil to remove my makeup instead of makeup wipes?

About six months ago, I was suddenly hit with really bad breakouts— something I hadn’t dealt with since I was in middle/high school. For the first time in years I found myself having to reevaluate my entire skin regimen. I did tons of research and was shocked to find out that I had never really learned how to take proper care of my skin. You’re supposed to cleanse, tone, and moisturize every day? And what even is an eye serum?! I realized that makeup wipes, which I had always used, do a terrible job of actually removing makeup; they mostly just drag makeup and dirt all over your face. So, I ditched makeup wipes and have been using coconut oil since. A huge thing for me has been finding the balance between natural products and dermatologist-prescribed medication, and I think I’ve done a pretty good job thus far. I now have a thorough morning and bedtime skin routine, and my bedtime routine always starts with using coconut oil to remove (most of) my makeup. I think it’s important to note that while coconut oil is absolutely incredible, it doesn’t always get every bit of makeup. For me, it usually takes a combination of using coconut oil, my Cetaphil cleanser, and my Thayers Witch Hazel toner (right below!) to remove all my makeup. Of course there are other coconut oils you can use, but I’m always happy to support Shea Moisture!

Product: Witch Hazel: Rose Petal (Aloe Vera Formula, Alcohol-Free) Company: Thayers Natural Remedies Where I Bought It: Target Price I Paid: $10.95

My Personal Thoughts: Witch hazel was actually recommended to me recently by the esthetician that works at my dermatologist’s office, and I’ve been using it as a toner every day since. I started with T.N. Dickinson’s but switched over to Thayers, because I prefer that Thayers is alcohol-free. (The Dickinson’s brand contains 14% alcohol, and I know my skin enough to know that’s not the best thing for me.) Witch hazel is particularly good at lessening redness, and I’m slowly but surely seeing positive results.

Pro-Tip: After you’ve removed your makeup with a makeup wipe or healthy oil(s), put some witch hazel on a cotton round and swipe it over your whole face. You might be surprised to see how much makeup you missed without realizing. Ever since I discovered this, I’ve taken my skincare routine a lot more seriously. Cheers to the magic of witch hazel!

Product: Peppermint Toothpaste (Fluoride-Free, Antiplaque & Whitening) Company: Tom’s of Maine Where I Bought It: Target Price I Paid: $4.49

My Personal Thoughts: Toothpaste is something I never really thought about (I always went for generic Colgate or Crest), but as I learn and care more about other aspects of my health, I definitely think more about my oral health (why is it hard to type that without my head ending up in the gutter?). I love that Tom’s is easily accessible and uses ethical ingredients. In terms of taste, this particular peppermint toothpaste has a subtle mintiness and makes your breath feel really fresh like regular toothpaste. I do want to note that I’m no expert on fluoride—specifically, whether or not it’s good or bad for you. Right now I’m trying this fluoride-free toothpaste, but I may switch it up. Tom’s offers fluoride AND fluoride-free, as well as different flavors, so you have plenty of options.

Product: Magnesium Roll-On Deodorant in Tropical Nectar Company: Honestly pHresh Where I Bought It: Target Price I Paid: $6.99

My Personal Thoughts: I’m going to be upfront here and say that I’ve spent most of my young life as a loyal Secret buyer (as I’m guessing most of us are). I never thought twice about it. When I needed deodorant, I went right for the Secret Clear Gel liquid deodorant with a fruity scent. So, this has been one of the more difficult changes for me in switching over to natural/cruelty-free products. It’s mostly difficult, because I swear by gel/liquid deodorant, which can be reeeally hard in the natural/cruelty-free world. I’ve spent many minutes sitting next to the small amount of options at Target, using up data on my phone in order to research the brands in front of me. One day I finally just decided to go with Honestly pHresh, and I’m really happy with that decision. I am curious to experiment with other brands, but I also wouldn’t be upset if this was the only brand available to me.

Alrighty, there you have it! I hope this contains some nuggets of information for you! And if you learned absolutely nothing, I hope you enjoyed my cute little photos. :)

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