Making the transition from conventional beauty products to clean beauty products can be overwhelming, even for those of us with cash to spare. Where do you even start? How do you know what’s safe? What are you supposed to do with all the products that are already in your makeup bag? 

Swapping everything you already own for clean equivalents can be a real budget drainer — non-toxic ingredients are expensive! — but the truth is, this is your health we’re talking about. Eliminating toxins from your foundation, your shampoo, your nail polish…that’s a worthwhile investment to make.

Ready to take the plunge? Here’s how to make the transition to clean beauty an affordable one.

Soaps

Our skin soaks up approximately seven pounds of chemical toxins every year through the products we apply to our bodies — some of the worst offenders being lathering detergents like sodium lauryl sulphate (a known irritant), parabens (formaldehyde releasers that have been linked to cancer) and fragrances, which are often made up of undisclosed chemicals.

Keep this transition cheap by ditching conventional liquid body washes and choosing a gentle soap like Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Soap or a solid bar made from organic goat’s milk — so luxe!

Lotions

That pretty bottle you reach for every day may not be as innocent as it looks! Dozens of toxic ingredients are found in top-brand body lotions, including Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) (an endocrine disruptor and human carcinogen), DMDM Hydantoin (a formaldehyde-releasing preservative) and Retinyl Palmitate (a controversial vitamin A derivative).

While there are lots of delightful clean lotions out there, if you’re trying to keep things simple you’ll want to go with something tried and true like extra virgin coconut oil. Just make sure you keep it on your body and use something lighter for the face.

Makeup

If you were to replace every single conventional makeup product with a clean alternative in one go, you’d be in for one hefty bill. Instead, start with the big five — foundation, concealer, blush, brow liner and mascara — then introduce smaller, infrequently used items like shadows and bronzers later on.

Some of my favorite affordable nontoxic beauty brands include 100% Pure, OSEA and Juice Beauty. There’s lots to choose from!

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