Clean & Conscious: Building a Skincare Routine with Intention
Confused about clean beauty? You’re not the only one.
As a small beauty and skincare brand that cares about our community, Bellavana prides itself on keeping up with the latest industry talk and trends. Unfortunately, something we’ve been noticing more and more of recently is a lot of discussion regarding whether or not clean beauty actually matters, or if it’s just another marketing ploy among many.
To get to the bottom of some myths and misconceptions, we thought we’d take this opportunity to clear the air and let you know where we stand. Today, we’re answering some common questions about the clean beauty movement, as well as sharing some tips to help you navigate going forward.
What is Clean Beauty?
Once upon a time, the clean beauty movement started as an effort by a small handful of independent brands to begin creating cosmetics according to a higher set of standards and values.
Understanding that the beauty and skincare items we use everyday impact everything - from our health, to our environment, our economy, and our ethos as a society - most companies who participate in the clean beauty movement are coming from a place of wanting to do better.
However, what this actually looks like in practice varies widely from brand to brand. For many brands, it’s about the formulas themselves, sourcing ingredients that are organic, natural, non-toxic, plant-based, cruelty free, fair trade, or some combination of these. Meanwhile, others are concerned with overall sustainability, in terms of manufacturing, packaging, and distribution.
Additionally, for some, the term "clean beauty" embodies a broader commitment to ethical and moral business practices, prioritizing things like transparency, accountability, and social justice initiatives.
And while all of these types of efforts are important, what seems to be undermining the credibility of clean beauty is the lack of consistency across the board. Furthermore, because there are no regulations or legal definitions regarding what constitutes clean beauty, it’s hard for anyone to keep up, making it easier for consumers to be led astray by false claims.
As more big beauty companies co-opt the movement - using green-washing or clean-washing terminology as a way to cash in on the growing market share - it has become increasingly difficult for consumers to trust their favorite beauty brands, or even see the point of getting on board with clean beauty. So where do we go from here?
Bellavana Beauty's Clean Standards
Our founder, Aaliyah Bella Rose, created Bellavana Beauty from her own desire to have naturally derived products she could trust with her skin and that followed her own personal values around ethics, inclusion, and protecting the environment. She researched skin science, ingredients, formulations, and how to create an ethical business, using resources like the EWG & Credo Clean Beauty Standards as her guide.
From there, we created and developed our own set of clean beauty standards that encompass the following:
- High quality & conscious formulation standards: Each ingredient is vetted for efficacy & safety, down to the colors, scents, and preservative systems we use
- Ethical & moral business practices: We operate our business with high ethical standards, standing up for what's right. We do not support child labor, exploitation, or inequality
- Intentional products that serve a purpose: We produce effective, targeted, solution - based skincare in minimalistic routines to reduce waste & combat the overconsumption of beauty products
- Brand & product transparency: We are very transparent about what's in our products & how we operate our small business to ensure trust between us
- Environmental sustainability: We are dedicated to the mission of protecting the environment, taking actionable, tangible steps to do so & using ingredients & methods that minimize our impact
- Individual health & wellbeing: Our first ethos is do no harm - we consider the impact on our community from the health of your skin to your mental & emotional wellbeing - Bellavana isn't just a body care brand, it's are a lifestyle
Other factors that we take into consideration as a clean beauty brand are:
- Being vegan (no animal - derived ingredients) & cruelty free (not tested on animals)
- Creating minimal, simple yet effective routines that combat hyperconsumerism
- Plant - based, naturally derived ingredients & the use of safe synthetics
- Using recyclable, reusable packaging with low or reduced impact to the environment
The topic of which ingredients to not use in skincare products is highly debated amongst the clean beauty community and industry as a whole. The debate comes from the "clean" and "dirty" fear mongering tactic used to demonize certain ingredients while heightening the appeal of others.
Aaliyah, our founder, has a background in Exercise & Health Science, so our brand was founded on choosing science over fear marketing and only using ingredients that are known to be beneficial for your skin, whether natural or synthetic. We've extensively researched the science and testing behind why certain ingredients are used and not used, and curated a "no" list of our own based on the impact to animals and humans during testing and on the environment, including the following:
- Animal - derived ingredients
- Butylated compounds
- Formaldehyde releasing ingredients
- Ethanolamine compounds (DEA/MEA/TEA)
- Mineral Oils
- SLS / SLES
- 1-4 Dioxane
- PEG Compounds
- Plastic & Microplastics
- Petroleum - derived ingredients
Make it Make Sense: Does Clean Beauty Really Matter?
Bottom line: at Bellavana, we wholeheartedly believe that bringing you better beauty absolutely does matter. Our brand values are informed by a scientific and medical background, and the idea of “first do no harm.”
Regardless of all the confusion and clutter that exists within the clean beauty movement, we continue to see the value in choosing a holistic lifestyle, and limiting your exposure to products and practices that may cause harm to your health or the planet.
We also firmly believe that the personal care industry needs to change for the better. So with this in mind, Bellavana will continue to lead the charge by doing everything we can to have a positive, tangible impact, and by keeping our core values at the forefront of everything we do.
At the end of the day, a better term for what we do might be conscious beauty. No implications. Just a commitment to being aware of what we do, how we do it, and how it affects the world around us.
Join Bellavana’s Conscious Beauty Movement: How to Build a Conscious Skincare Routine
If you’ve been inspired to adopt your own clean and conscious beauty routine, we are so excited to welcome you to the Bella Fam!
Here are a few of our tips to help you become an informed consumer, or as we like to say: a “skintellectual.”
#1: Define your own set of values - When starting your own journey with conscious beauty, the options can feel overwhelming. To avoid feeling pulled in a million directions, you may find it helpful to prioritize a few key elements that make the most sense for your lifestyle. If only using vegan formulas or cruelty-free ingredients is motivating to you, that’s a great place to start. Or maybe you want to only shop brands that support a cause that’s important to you. Once you know what your focus is, it will become easier to seek out those options accordingly.
#2: Learn your way around a label - As we’ve already discussed, it’s unfortunately not as simple as relying buzzwords to clue you in to whether or not a product is actually “clean” or adhering to any real values. In order to take your health into your own hands, it will be worth your time to start learning about ingredients, and do a little of your own research, in order to figure out which brands actually align with your personal values and make an informed decision.
#3: Look for brands that walk the walk rather than just talk the talk - Remembering that marketing and social media can be deceptive, another area where you may need to do some digging is around a brand’s ethics. For example you may want to spend some time browsing their website to learn about what they actually stand for and what they’re doing to stay accountable to practices such as sustainability, and social responsibility.
#4: Choose products according to your unique needs - In terms of practicing self care and getting real results for your skin, the best routine will always be the one that is tailored to your individual skin condition and concerns. Rather than paying attention to trends, or the latest viral products, a much more effective approach will be to focus only on what you know you need, while tuning out the rest.
#5: Keep it simple for skincare success - At Bellavana, we are all about minimalism. Rather than wasting your money on a million different products and creating more waste for the planet, another great way to be a conscious consumer is to pare your routine to the essentials. For example, to care for your whole body, you can get amazing results by using just a body wash, body butter, oil, and scrub with active - as well as natural - ingredient formulas that support overall skin health.
One Final Note Before You Go
At Bellavana Beauty, we want you to know that to us, clean beauty is more than a marketing strategy and conscious beauty is more than just how we talk about our brand. To us, it’s how we live, and we want to help you do the same.
Our customers matter to us and inspire everything that we do. We take great strides to ensure that our products and brand stand for the bigger picture, and live by a people over profit business mindset. We’re in it for the long run. For our customers, our community, and the planet.
You May Also Like:
Slow Beauty: How Hyperconsumerism is Dying in America
How to Spot Greenwashing in the Beauty Industry
● https://abeautifulmess.com/why-clean-beauty-matters/ https://www.racked.com/2016/5/5/11591300/natural-skincare-clean-beauty-toxins