Reducing Toxins

What Lies Beneath: A Guide to Toxin-Free Makeup

By: Carley Schweet, IIN

Average reading time: 3.5 minutes

Clean Up Your Makeup

Have you ever stopped to consider how the makeup you’re wearing is potentially affecting the health of your thyroid and overall wellness? You may not realize it, but the products we apply daily to our skin, lips, and eyes need to be on your radar when it comes to exposing your body to environmental toxins.

Most mainstream makeup and other beauty products are packed with toxic chemicals such as phthalates, lead, parabens, and more. These can negatively impact your endocrine system, mimic hormones, and cause general hormonal chaos. If you haven’t taken a closer look at your current makeup products, perhaps now is the time!

In this article, we’re going to cover the hidden dangers that could be lurking in your makeup. And then—the fun part—we’re going to help you do a makeup clean-up by looking at some of the incredible non-toxic makeup options available to us today. I’ll cover all the essentials.

First, a quick note: You might notice that most of the links below are via Thyroid Refresh does not receive any money or kickbacks from Follain. We chose to use their links because Follain puts all of the products and brands they carry through a strict vetting process based on quality, safety, and performance. They take the guesswork out of finding non-toxic makeup that works. We think it’s a great resource for thyroid patients, and wanted to share!  

Common Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) in Beauty Products

When shopping for new, cleaner makeup options, it’s important to be on the lookout for these toxic ingredients on makeup labels:

Why Is Non-Toxic Makeup the Better Choice?

Non-toxic makeup often doubles as skin care. Why? Well, it does a better job of caring for your skin because the ingredients are nourishing and hydrating instead of harsh and potentially drying. However, it should not replace your current skincare routine.

Are you feeling overwhelmed or not sure where to begin?

Don’t worry, and don’t forget to breathe! When you’re doing your own makeup clean-up, go at a pace that’s right for you. For some of us, that means dumping our entire makeup kit and starting over (i.e. ripping off the Band-Aid). For others, that means replacing one item at a time as they’re used up, or as money allows. Meet yourself where you are, but please, be aware and try your best to make this important change.

Makeup Cleanup: 5 Non-Toxic Makeup Swaps

Below you’ll find five must-have makeup swaps to replace your current products and clean up your routine in no time. Your skin and your body will thank you!

The less work your body has to do to process chemicals, the more energy it has to devote to vitality and healing.

1.) Sheer Tinted Moisturizer or Light Foundation

Even in the cooler months, having a tinted moisturizer that contains SPF is essential for the overall health of your skin. Personally, I’m a big fan of the Sheer Tinted Moisturizer by ILIA.

It’s made with non-nano zinc oxide to protect your delicate skin from harmful UV rays. It also contains avocado oil, which can help prevent breakouts and is deeply nourishing for the skin.

If you find that the ILIA tinted moisturizer is a bit thick once you’ve added it your hand, consider adding a drop or two of organic jojoba oil before applying to your face.

Additional options:

2.) The Perfect Concealer

What makes the W3ll People Bio Correct Multi-Action Concealer different than any other concealer I’ve ever tried is the list of powerful multi-action ingredients like coffee seed oil (to depuff), pumpkin seed oil (to brighten), and coconut oil (to moisturize).

Also, you’ll notice that this concealer doesn’t usually give you those lovely little creases that other concealers are notorious for. It stays in place even through the longest of days!

Additional options:

3.) Lengthening Mascara

I get it: Mascara can be a hard one to swap. But think about all of the potentially harmful toxins you’re layering right next to your delicate eye area. Yikes! Finding a non-toxic alternative is essential.

Fear not, because the Expressionist Mascara by W3ll People is just what you’re looking for. It’s packed with nourishing ingredients like beeswax to condition your lashes, carnauba wax to add a flexible hold, and sunflower seed oil to hydrate.

Additional options:

4.) Double Duty Creamy Lip and Cheek Tint

Overhauling your makeup can feel completely overwhelming and expensive. That’s why the Lip2Cheek from RMS Beauty is a great way to stretch your dollar further—it’s like a lip tint and creamy blush all in one tiny glass pot!

Just a few dabs of your favorite Lip2Cheek tint on the apples of your cheeks, and then mixed in with your favorite moisturizing (and non-toxic) lipgloss or chapstick, and you’re good to go!

I love RMS Beauty products because they’re formulated with rich, hydrating coconut oil, a natural anti-bacterial. Remember what I said about non-toxic makeup acting as skincare?

Additional options:

5.) For that Instant Glow

If you’re looking for an ethereal glow, look no further. As someone who has hereditary dark circles, the Magic Luminizer by RMS Beauty can do wonders for balancing out dark shadows around my eyes.

Just a small dab in the inside corner of your eye will instantly brighten and give you a gorgeous glow.

It’s so essential to use beauty products with ingredients you trust, especially when placed so close to your eyes.

Do you want a glow but in a more cooling shade? The sister product of the Magic Luminizer is the Living Luminzer and provides a more satin pearl finish versus a warming glow.

Additional options:

An Important Reminder

If you’re curious to learn more about the toxicity levels of the products in your current makeup routine, check out the Think Dirty app. You might be surprised at what you find!

Remember, at the end of the day, cleaning up your makeup routine doesn’t have to happen overnight. Rest assured that swapping even one or two toxic makeup products for non-toxic options can provide significant benefits for not only your skin, but also for your overall health and wellness.


About the Author

Carley is the self-care coach and author behind the book and digital course, Boundaries with Soul™. 

After years of people-pleasing in the corporate fashion industry in New York City, she finally realized there was more to life than being a chronic yes-woman. By practicing transformational self-care, she gained more confidence and discovered that by making her needs a priority, real happiness would soon follow. 

Carley is the host of the You Time™ Podcast, and her work is featured on major media outlets such as MindBodyGreen, Bustle, Hello Giggles, and Elite Daily.