Friday Five: Ingredients I’m Avoiding with My Clean Beauty Transition

Finally today I want to share five ingredients I’m avoiding with my clean beauty transition.

*Disclosure: I am in no way telling you that this is what you should do or this is the best for everyone. I think it’s important to do your own research and discover things on your own. This is just the path I have chosen for myself and the products I’m using. This is not from me as a pharmacist, but me as a friend who has done my own personal research on each and every ingredient I’m talking about.*

SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)

SLS is typically found in beauty products. This is one of the common ingredients that gets shampoo/body wash to foam up and really feel like it’s giving you a good clean. But is it? Well, no. I could go full nerd here, but I won’t. I just want to say this…if we don’t need it, then why is it in our products? The same goes for colorings and dyes.


Another ingredient class I’m choosing to minimize my exposure to is parabens. What are parabens? Long story short, they are preservatives. This is what helps lengthen the shelf life of beauty products. Are they bad? Well, they can mimic a certain type of estrogen. This seems a little scary to me. I can speak from my experience and my experience only. When I started this journey, my face broke out pretty badly and I was an emotional wreck. I actually texted my friends and said, do you think it could be this clean beauty journey I’m on? Will I ever know? Maybe not. Again, if we don’t need it, then why is it in our products?


Formaldehyde is another offender which is used as a preservative. If you remember back years ago, it used to be used when dissecting animals in biology classes. It has a very distinct smell…if you know, you know. There’s evidence it can cause cancer, so I want to avoid if it all possible.


I’m also trying to minimize exposure to is phthalates. These pesky phthalates help cosmetics to be long-wearing. While we may want our makeup to last all day, is that really healthy? I have become much more of a stickler about my skincare, but when I used to sleep in my makeup in college the results were terrible. Clogged pores, breakouts, etc. I just feel like we need to limit these extra ingredients in our products. Would I rather just apply some extra (clean) powder in the afternoon? Yes.


Lastly, I’m getting rid of products that contain silicone. This is mostly true of hair products, but it can be found in primers, too. It tends to the coat the strand of hair and cause more buildup. When I’ve used products with silicone, I never felt like my hair got clean, and it always felt heavy. We just don’t need this ingredient in our hair products.

If you want to start learning about ingredients, Beauty Counter has an awesome list of ingredients they will never use. You can find it here.

PLEASE let me know if you have any questions. As my research continues, I’ll be sure to share what I find. Stay tuned for lots of clean products in next week’s skincare and body care posts. Thanks for reading.