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A Guide To Clean Beauty

Have you ever felt overwhelmed with the amount of research needed to buy into clean beauty? Never understanding the ingredients? Well, us too! We’re here to help, to make buying clean beauty that little bit easier. 

You’ve probably heard the terms ‘organic’ ‘sustainable’ ‘sulphate free’ and ‘natural’ but what do all these really mean? What does clean beauty really mean?  

With a growing interest in beauty that is free from toxins, better for our skin and the environment, brands are having to switch up according to new consumer demands. Clean beauty isn’t about being 100% perfect, but being aware and knowledgeable is a great start. Let go of buzzwords like natural and organic and let’s make clean beauty simple. Yeah, that’s right, it really can be that simple… 

Let's Break It Down

What does ‘clean’ mean? The word that seems to have a different meaning for every beauty brand. Let’s cut the confusion and get down to the basics. Clean means the product is safe for people and the planet. The product should have considered environmental and human health, with a focus on using nontoxic ingredients, just like ‘clean eating’ rejects the idea of eating fast food or processed food. For beauty brands this means two main things; clean ingredients and transparent labels. The product should include only safe ingredients, a beauty brand should list all of its ingredients accordingly, for example watch out for beauty brand labelling ‘fragrance’ – this is not transparent; it is an umbrella term! 

Understanding The Labels

Reading the ingredients list is mainly unavoidable when trying to buy clean beauty, but we can make it simpler for you. A key tip is to keep an eye out for any words ending in Paraben or anything ‘sulphate’ like sodium lauryl sulphate, lauryl sodium sulphate or sodium dodecyl sulphate. 


  • Methylparaben 
  • Ethylparaben 
  • Butylparaben 
  • Ethylparaben 


Ingredients you should avoid all together when looking for clean beauty are: 

Parabens, fragrances, aluminium compounds, ethoxylated agents, formaldehyde, refined petroleum, hydroquinone, talc, triclosan, silica and oxybenzone. 

All of these key ingredients are the main cause of concern in the clean beauty industry for many harmful reasons (but it is still unknown if each ingredient has been proved harmful.)  

Without these harmful ingredients your beauty products will be free from irritating ingredients that cause itching and burning on the skin. This is often caused by Sulphate and mainly found in your bathroom essentials like shampoo, shower gel and facewash to turn your liquids into foam. 

Whereas Parabens have never been linked to any serious health conditions, some people prefer their beauty products without them. These are often found in makeup and sunscreen to help boost their shelf life. 

Another benefit to clean beauty is that it’s sustainable and ethical, with many brands using ingredients and packaging that is recyclable and ethically sourced. The main ingredients we should be careful with when thinking about the environment are microbeads and polyethylene. Many synthetic face scrubs contain very tiny pieces of plastic that you feel when scrubbing your face, however these microscopic beads are then washed down the drain to pollute the environment and harm marine life. This is the same issue with polyethylene as it is thought to be harmful for marine wildlife consumption. 

Getting Started

There is a lot to take in when it comes to the ingredients and understanding clean beauty as a whole, however taking a step towards clean beauty should be an exciting and personal choice. Remember it is completely your choice what ingredients you choose to look out for. Take it step by step by swapping out a daily moisturiser or sunscreen and slowly graduate towards cleansers, shampoos and skincare as you gain a deeper knowledge and experience. Some great brands to dive into who offer clean products are: Farmacy, Bissonace, Ren and Bare Minerals.

I hope we made your journey into clean beauty that little bit easier.  


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DISCLAIMER: We always aim to credit the original source of every image we include in our content. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please get in touch at marketing@cohorted.co.uk.







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