The 11 Best Places to Shop for Non-Toxic Beauty and Clean Skincare
- by Alden Wicker
- Jan 5, 2016
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So, you’re ready to overhaul your skincare regimen, but don’t know where to buy non-toxic beauty.
Maybe you’ve heard the news about pthlalates (endocrine disrupting, present in most people’s bodies, but more so in women’s bodies because of beauty products), parabens (linked to breast cancer, and present in most people’s bodies), and talc (a mineral that can contain cancer-causing asbestos), and you’re rightly freaked out. Perhaps you’ve heard that cosmetics and beauty products are more closely regulated in Europe, and that many ingredients banned in Europe are sold here with little to no oversight, and you wish you could ban those ingredients from your own bathroom.
Whatever the reason, I’m going to make it easy for you. Instead of going to the drugstore and trying to decipher the labels of beauty products to decide if they’re good for you, why don’t you just shop at beauty stores that do the curating and research for you? Here are the best places to go shopping with confidence.
[Psst! Check out this post for more clean skincare brands, this one for the best clean makeup brands. and this one for safe nail polish!]
Petit Vour carries a curated selection of cruelty-free, vegan, and nontoxic beauty and wellness products. They curate using a 4-step standard based on performance, ingredient integrity, ethical manufacturing, and aesthetic. Nothing is ever tested on animals, and they have a list of banned toxic ingredients that you will never find in the products they stock. Check out their special Zero Waste Beauty collection or sign up for their subscription beauty box.
Founded by a former Sephora executive, Credo Beauty exhaustively tests products to make sure they are both effective, and gorgeously packaged. (Read my review of Credo.) You can chat with a beauty expert, or ask them which product they would recommend as a replacement for your toxic (former) favorite in their Clean Beauty Swaps section. Watch video interviews with the brand founders, too. You really can’t go wrong, but I recommend you check out the brands Acure, Captain Blankenship, Forager Botanicals fragrances, Hana Skincare, Kari Gran skincare, Kypris skincare, Osmia Organics, Red Flower, and Stop the Water While Using Me.
You’re a fan of cannabis, Miss Grass is for you. They have a curated shop filled with vetted brands that make CBD skincare, beauty, and wellness products for inside and out. You can shop by need, form, or brand. Plus, they have a huge knowledge base to learn more about all things cannabis too.
Roven is the skincare and makeup branch of Grove Collaborative. The convenient thing about Grove/Roven is that you can set up a custom subscription, so you get your favorite items delivered to you right before you run out. You can check out more about their standards and ingredients here.
JUNIPER and YU
Inspired by traditional beauty rituals and healing practices of Asia and The Far East, JUNIPER and YU is an online destination devoted to all things beauty, health, and well-being. They curate non-toxic, sustainable, and ethically made products that nourish the mind, body, and soul. From wild-harvested skin elixirs to ancient tonic botanicals, your senses will take you on an invigorating journey across the world to experience beauty at its finest. You can shop by skin type, skincare category, internal beauty category (ie: brain food), or brand.
Nordstrom Natural Beauty
Launched in January of 2017, Nordstrom’s new natural beauty section (online and IRL) features products that are paraben-, sulfate-, and phthalate-free. Find the usuals like Herbivore Botanicals, Tata Harper, and Kypris, plus new faces like Youth to the People, Chantecaille, and Arcona.
BLK + GRN
Having seen firsthand the damaging effects harmful ingredients and practices have had on the black community, all of BLK + GRN’s Black artisans are carefully chosen by Black women’s health experts who know what an all-natural product truly looks like. This marketplace connects Black women with natural lifestyles to high-quality, toxic-free brands that share in their mission of health, wellness and community cultivation.
For the beauty minimalist with high standards, Le Vert puts the emphasis on clean beauty that performs. It carries many brands I love, like Aila nail polishes, EcoBrow, Ilia lipsticks, Kahina skincare, One Love Organics, LURK fragrances, and Vapour Organic Beauty. Look through recommendations and reviews to find the perfect product for you.
The name say sit all. With one co-founder a breast cancer survivor, you can be sure this West C0ast store takes the purity of its ingredients seriously. And there is a lot to look through! You can find almost all the brands I’ve already mentioned, plus Cocovit, Kure Bazaar, and even detoxing foodstuffs like Taza Chocolate, Lov teas, Teatox, and Urban Moonshine, making it a one-stop shop for all your beauty needs.
With an NYC store and spa, plus an easy-to-navigate online presence, this store run by two women glams up the process of shopping for skincare. Find the cream of the creams, with brands like Indie Lee skincare, Kjaer Weis makeup, Meow Meow Tweet soaps, Odacité skincare, Rahua hair care, S.W. Basics skincare, and Tata Harper skincare, each of which come with a brief description, and the owners’ favorites.
This Boston-based store also has a new outpost in NYC’s Soho, where you can refill your bottle with their naturally scented, non-toxic hand soap . But you can also find their vast and comprehensive selection of clean and effective skincare and makeup products.
Because of the subscription box, Love Goodly might be a good option for you if you’re just starting out your switch to clean beauty because it will allow you to try several different fun products every month. But if you don’t want the box, you can shop individual products from the site as well. In addition to only selling ethical and environmentally-friendly skincare and beauty products, Love Goodly also partners with several different non-profit organizations to give back a portion of profits.
This San Francisco-based store likes to import little-known products from Europe, in order to capture some of that French skincare magic. (Read my whole review here.) If all these foreign brands look inpenatrable, no worries. You can get samples or set up a private skin consultation in person or over Skype.
Pretty Well Beauty
Pretty Well Beauty is a digital platform focused on 100% clean beauty and wellness. Its founder, Jazmin Alvarez, vets its partners by learning about their ingredients, including where they come from and how they’re sourced. All featured brands adhere to clean and sustainability practices.
CVTD is an online boutique that curates indie beauty brands, focusing on natural, non-toxic and cruelty-free makeup and skincare.
I absolutely recommend this brand for its well-developed collection of anti-aging and skincare products. Shop by product type or skin type, and build a comprehensive skincare regimen that is grounded in science.
With skincare and makeup, this effective and clean brand provides everything a modern girl needs to take care of her skin and feel great, without toxins, especially if you are struggling with acne or other skin ailments. Shop by product type, skin type, or collection.
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics is trying to get legislation passed so that all beauty products are safe! Check them out for updates on legislation, petitions to sign, and other ways to get involved.
In order to fund EcoCult’s research and writing, the brands listed may have paid a small fee to be featured in this post and it may contain affiliate links. As always, EcoCult only features brands we believe are making the world a better place. Support EcoCult editorial by supporting them!