Green Skin

No, I’m not talking about this look:


but it is pretty wicked, as my friends in New England might say. 🙂

Awhile back, my sister told me about this cool website, Cosmetics Database, where you can look up beauty products and see their score in terms of safety and environmental impact. You can search via keyword for a particular product you’re interested in, or search a topic like “Makeup” or “Skincare” and sort by score.

I have been trying a lot of different products lately, searching for the right balance of eco-friendliness and effectiveness. I just realized I’ve been stuck in the A’s – most of the products I’ve been using are by Alba, Avalon, Auromere Ayurvedic, Almay and Aveda. Heh. Many of these fall in the mid range, with a score of about 4-6. I’m not crazy about this, but I haven’t found anything I love with a lower score… yet. Avalon Organics is a great line my sister likes, but I’m not crazy about the smell of lavender, which is in the shampoo best suited for my hair. I swear, I’m the only person who feels this way – everyone I know loves the smell! I adore violet, but lavender, not so much. I would like to try some of their other shampoos, though. I’ve been using their Vitamin C Moisture Plus Lotion SPF 15 which I like, but rates a 6 out of 10 on the hazard scale. I was using Giovanni shampoo for awhile, which you can buy in bulk at my local co-op. I liked it, but it wasn’t perfect for my hair, which tends to be kind of coarse. If I’m not careful, I lose the battle of the Jew-fro. 🙂 Aveda has a reputation for being “natural” and “plant-based” but many of their products still contain fragrance and less than natural ingredients.

Right now, I’m using Alba Coconut Milk Extra-Rich Hair Wash and Mango Moisturizing Conditioner, which smell great but rate a 5 on the hazard scale. Not bad in the scheme of things, but not great. I also hate the amount of plastic I go through with these products! Buying in bulk is a great option, as I mentioned, but that’s not an option for everyone, and sometimes they don’t have the right products that work for specific hair needs.

mango conditioner

For soap, I really like Dr. Bronner’s. I’ve got a bar of the Citrus and of the Almond right now and they’re great – and only rate a 2! I used to be a Dove addict, but this has been an easy switch. They smell delish! Looks like Dr. B also makes a full-line of other products, so I’m going to keep my eyes open for those. Their Magic Liquid is great, too, for a variety of purposes, but it definitely doesn’t cut it as a shampoo for my hair!


There are so many products labeled eco-friendly out there right now, but it’s hard to know which are real and which are greenwashed. Hopefully Cosmetics Database can help us sort through and find what we’re looking for!

What eco-friendly beauty products do you like? How do they rate on the hazard scale? Have any to recommend to me?



Filed under Product Reviews

5 responses to “Green Skin

  1. I love Dr. Bronner’s… and definitely will be checking out the website you suggested above. It’s amazing how clueless we all can be about what we put onto-or into-our bodies! Can’t wait to come back home and talk about this a bit more- thanks for keeping us all aware… 🙂

  2. Avedo shampoos, while being a little pricey & rating “moderate” on the hazard scale, are nice because you can take your bottles to certain locations to get your shampoo/conditioner refilled. I like that 🙂 I love Alba, Jason and Nature’s Gate products a lot.

  3. fantastic website!

    not such good ratings for my products…blech

  4. next big thing i want to do=figure out what new beauty products to use!!!
    i heard a woman from the Environmental Working Group speak about this and its really quite frightening how few regulations there are and how poorly enforced anything is with cosmetics!! that website is GREAT!!
    i love dr. bronners. the liquid soap in bulk is great-its super stong, and you can easily dilute it and get at least 4x as much soap!
    i just got some jason sunbrella organic facial sunscreen but apparently even that is a 5 out of 10
    i love the smell of alba!
    i can’t wait to try out my natural dentist products and hopefully give mr. toms the boot!
    keep me posted on your new green skin discoveries!!

  5. I also rely on Cosmetics Database for Cosmetics products that I would buy. While finding beauty products that will enhance my looks, I’m also aware that half of those products contain chemicals that isn’t eco-friendly and would probably cause skin diseases or other effects on my body.

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