Natural Beauty Products That Actually Work

Julie Inzanti is a New York City-based freelance writer and blogger covering lifestyle, fashion, shopping, beauty, and motherhood. She has a sense of humor and common sense.

Natural Beauty CollectionNatural products have always been around, but lately they seem to be making a resurgence. We have all become increasingly aware of what we put in and on our bodies—from organic, locally grown produce to organic, locally made fabrics and natural cosmetics. But the”natural” beauty product departments in most stores (even Walmart) are bigger than ever (and still growing) as consumers make healthier lifestyle choices.

Like many women, my initiation into natural products was through deodorant. There was news circulating years ago that the rise in breast cancer was connected to the aluminum in antiperspirant. The evidence linking breast cancer to antiperspirant may be inconclusive, but why take unnecessary chances? Needless to say, I haven’t used antiperspirant in years.

It wasn’t an easy transition. My first month using Tom’s natural deodorant was rough: My armpits felt wet all the time and I kinda smelled. I had to keep washing under my arms and reapplying. It was not cute. As my body was getting used to the new routine, it was reassuring to know I had eliminated these toxic chemicals from my life. In the beginning I sweat more but my body adapted and now I sometimes forget to wear deodorant altogether and I never smell.

A lot of women claim that natural products “don’t work,” but what we really should be saying is, we don’t have the patience to let the natural products work with our bodies. Because, trust me, they will.

We decided to do check in with the talented women behind Brooklyn Herborium to find out what some of their favorite products are and share their natural beauty tips.

Brooklyn Herborium

Brooklyn Herborium co-founders Molly and Emma strongly believe in the wisdom of traditional herbal medicine: “If an oil or herb or seed butter has been working beautifully for human skin for thousands of years, there’s a good chance it will work for you too!”

Here are some truly natural products available at the Brooklyn Herborium brick-and-mortar in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn or on their e-commerce site:
SYWOCow Fart Juice

FACE: Cleanse with Sow Your Wild Oats; Moisturize with Nourish & Replenish Oil plus Mineral Mist of your choice… For special skin issues like Acne use Cow Fart Juice and for Anti-aging (other than a time machine, healthy diet, sleep, exercise, sun and fresh air) use Rosehip {seed} Oil for preservative-free wrinkle treatment and Magick Potion Lotion for dramatic results!

HAIR: Cleanse with Sow Your Wild Oats every few weeks, and there will be no need to condition. Check out their Hair Rehab article to get the healthiest most natural hair of your life!

BODY: They are currently working on a deodorant recipe, but for basic cleansing try Ancient Secrets Body Scrub and New Fangled Ideas Coffee Body Scrub, then moisturize with 100% Organic Infused Coconut Oil (regular organic coconut oil is available at just about any grocery store).

The Brooklyn Herborium team is not able to recommend drug store brands, because they never use them. They explained that many of the natural products on the market still contain preservatives, stabilizers, penetration enhancers, fillers, and other chemicals. They don’t even use make-up! They find that, “With flawless skin, it’s unnecessary. And a totally holistic regimen provides lovely perfect skin! (Remember to combine with good lifestyle and food choices!)”

We did get one (seemingly controversial) beauty tip: Skip sunscreen—it clogs pores and causes breakouts. Instead, wear a big, beautiful hat!

If you’re still not ready to forgo your fancy face wash and switch your beauty regimen to herbs and oils, don’t fret. We did little roundup of our favorite natural products on the market that are available in most drug stores, supermarkets or online specialty stores. Tom’s of Maine deodorant definitely makes the cut! Weleda has amazing products for adults and babies; their Rosemary Hair Oil is incredible. Alba is available at Whole Foods and probably every other market in the U.S. Alba Botanics shampoos smell lovely, and their facial wash and papaya enzyme mask should be in your beauty routine.

Lush produces all natural hand-made products. You probably know the store if you’ve ever walked by and been knocked over by the lovely smells wafting in a 20-foot radius around the entrance. There are also two new luxury products available online that deserve a try: Rahua shampoo and Orgo spot treatment.

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