Hello my lovelies,

Today I wanted to do my own Going Green Blog tag, which is a very cute series of questions about making the transition to using green and natural products started by Rachel at All Natural Aspirations. I get a lot of questions from women who are just starting to go green and I am working on a beginner’s guide, but this will provide some helpful insight into my own experience in the meantime!

So – let’s get right to it!

1. What Started It All Off For You?

I think I have told this story before, but for me it all started with mascara. On a whim at the drugstore, I bought a tube of Physician’s Formula Organic Wear Jumbo Lash Mascara. I had been trying to eat healthy (in fact at the time I had been eating a raw vegan diet) and I liked the idea of using organic makeup. When I finished the tube, I decided to use up a sample of Clinique mascara that I had gotten from Sephora before buying any new replacements. In the first 24 hours of using the Clinique mascara, my eyes had become irritated and red. When I switched back to the Physician’s Formula , all signs of irritation disappeared.  I realized quickly that my body had adapted to all the bad, toxic ingredients in my regular mascara brands. After taking those all away and using a cleaner product, my body was finally having an honest reaction to the Clinique mascara. From that day forward, I wanted to know exactly what was inside my products and how they were affecting my body. I only wanted to use products that would help and heal, rather than harm or irritate – even if I am not fully aware that it is happening at the time.

2. What Was the First Thing to Go? (Ingredient or Product)

So, obviously, the first product to go was mascara! Some of the first toxins to go were parabens, SLS and SLES, artificial colours, fragrances, and dyes, and PEG compounds. These are, in my opinion, some of the easiest ones to get rid of and some of the most damaging. For more information on all of these ingredients, check out my post on The Main 3 Toxic Offenders or the Environmental Working Group Skin Deep website.

3. What Are You/What Did You Struggle to Let Go Of?

Hair styling products and deodorant. It took me a long time to find a natural deodorant that actually worked (check out the videos on my transition or brand reviews of ones I have tried if you want to know more), but it is totally worth it! Now, my two favourites are the Anti-Odour Bars by Earth to Body and the Lemon Tea-Tree Mint Deodorant by Organic Essence. It was definitely worth the somewhat smelly, trial and error switch!

I am still trying to find natural and green hair styling products that actually work – especially for wavy and curly hair like mine. Shampoos, conditioners, and masks have been easy – but I guess my hair needs some strong products to help tame the frizz and waves! If you have any suggestions for ones I should try, please leave a comment down below. As soon as I have some success, rest assured I will share my findings with all of you! Unfortunately, until then there are 1 or 2 not-so-green styling products that I have been keeping on hand.

4. What Has Been Your Best Find or Change? (i.e., A Green Product or A Tip That You’re Really Glad You’ve Found/Learnt)

Hands down it has to be learning about Coconut oil and how many amazing properties and uses it has! This is as both a beauty or skincare product and as a nutritional ingredient. I use coconut oil in so many different DIY products now – my makeup remover, as a simple hair mask, my DIY bath oils, curl defining gel, as an easy moisturizer. I am constantly finding new ways to incorporate it into my beauty routine. It is so good for you and a huge life saver if you are going green! The first time I talked about it on my channel was waaaayyy back in my first Skincare Favourites video. Plus, it is a very healthy oil and can be used to replace most other oils in your cooking.

5. What Has Been the Worst Thing About Going Green? What Has Been the Hardest to Transition or Find an Adequate Green Replacement Of?

The worst thing has to be becoming “that friend” – the one who is picky about what she uses, points out ingredients to people and fun facts about what is inside the products they use. I try really hard not to do this, but sometimes it just comes out! My friends all know I have the best intentions though (or at least I hope they do!) and there are no bad feelings or judgement. Everyone has to do what is right for them and, as I always say, as long as you are an informed customer and know what is inside the products you are using – that is all that matters!

It is so true that you cannot “unlearn” or “unsee” once you have done the research about clean vs. toxic beauty products. Once you go green, you don’t go back! It is sometimes lonely or annoying to be the only person in a group (or in a couple :p) who is really passionate about using clean products, but it is all so worth it at the end of the day because I know I am helping to heal my body and I am not harming the planet with the products I use. I want to lead my example, even if that means I am sometimes walking the path alone. But, whenever I am feeling lonely I just hop on the wonderful internet and I hang out with all of you! 🙂 The online Green Beauty Community is a great support system – just check out some of the amazing women tagged down below to see for yourself!

As far as what was hardest to transition away from, my answers are the same from question 3: deodorant and hair styling products. Although, I was able to find a natural deodorant that worked within about 6 months of switching. It has been over a year for hair care products with no luck so far! Fingers crossed I stumble across some goodies soon…

6. Anything Else to Add? Any Tips or Tricks to Pass On?

My best advice is going to sound contradictory. Be forgiving with yourself – you don’t have to be perfect and it is extremely difficult to be 100% clean and green all the time. New research is coming out every day and what we know is constantly changing. If you are trying your best to be an informed consumer, that is all you can ever do and, frankly, better than most of the population! Give yourself some credit and some leeway to make mistakes. However, I also tend to believe that it is better to be safe than sorry. Trust your gut – if you don’t feel comfortable using a product or ingredient than don’t! Even if you hear or read otherwise, or your friends try to convince you it is fine. Trust yourself and your decisions. You have the final say as to what goes on or in your body.

Who I Tag To Do It Next:

 Jen at Habitat for Herbivores

Angélique Shearer-Kudel

Jessica, the AntiBeautyQueen  – especially since she just made the decision to start “greening” her beauty products!

Nicole at Live It, Love It, Green It

And anyone else who wants to participate!

I really hope that you enjoyed this post. It was fun to write! Of course, if you have any questions or want more information on anything – make sure to leave a comment down below! I will see you all again soon.

-Courtney xoxo

Detox Your Skin, Detox Your Beauty