We all want to simplify our lives. De-clutter our lives, get rid of the stuff that doesn’t give us joy, and live simple and clean. We can donate clothes to Goodwill, put furniture on the curb, and toss more than half of our junk drawer in the trash. So, now picture your beauty/makeup situation in your medicine cabinet and bathroom counter. Unless you’re a rare exception, it’s probably overflowing with travel- and sample-size bottles, multiple brands of half-used products, and way too many random items. So, we’re here to help you tackle that problem and clean up your skincare world.
Give Yourself Space
First, let’s start with the places you keep all your products. Medicine cabinets, travel totes, and purses are good spots to start. They could likely use a good cleaning anyway, so empty them out and wipe them down, tossing all those little bits of trash and caps that don’t match with a bottle. Spotless shelves, a sparkling sink, and clean empty totes will give you a perfect start to your project. Go ahead and wipe off the gunk on the outsides of your containers while you’re at it, and you can give your caps a bath in a bowl of warm water to get the threads clean for a proper seal. Get all your tools together (tweezers, scissors, etc.) and give them a quick sterilizer soak. Now, organize your products by type (moisturizer, cleanser, serum, etc.) into little sections, and take a step back. You’re well on your way…doesn’t that feel good?
So, this next part can be difficult for many of us, so you’re not alone in this. It’s time to be honest about what you need and what you don’t. The thriftiest of us tend to keep everything that still has even trace amounts, but, as contrary as it feels, start getting rid of those first. If you have random brands that don’t match any others, toss them out. Most brands are formulated to work together, so pare it down if you can. If you have a good set of travel-size products, set them aside next to your empty tote.
Now, let’s get real about harmful ingredients found in skincare products. Your skin absorbs almost everything that touches, so this is crucial. Start reading labels and checking ingredients online. Most companies these days are good about not using these dangerous chemicals, but not all of them, especially the cheaper off-brands. Chemicals like parabens (disrupts the endocrine system), BHA (liver damage, potential carcinogen), phthalates (hormonal damage), sodium lauryl sulfate (skin irritation, induces acne), and polyethylene (those little plastic beads are pollutants and possible carcinogens) are readily absorbed, and can be found in all manner of beauty products where you might not expect them. Take some time and do your research; here’s a list of FDA banned ingredients, and another interactive list with filters to help you sort through this. Your health is way more important than how something makes you look, and this is a perfect opportunity to start purging these toxins from your life.
A New Start
You’re almost there! Assuming you’ve gone through the process (which isn’t easy…great job!), you’ve simplified your skincare routine. Between tossing your almost-empty products, mismatched brands, and items with dangerous chemicals, you’re likely down to the bare minimum. Now’s the time to do some research and decide on a “clean” regimen. Look for small batch, all-natural and organic brands like Shiok that can supply all of your skincare needs with an integrated line of products. This will go a long way in keeping things simple, both on your skin and in your cabinet. Once you’ve read your reviews and found a brand you can truly stand behind, you can order your products in appropriate sizes and bundles (and often save some money in the process), and carefully repopulate your cabinet, tote, and purse with your new products. Believe it or not, there are a few services that will recycle your gently used products that you don’t need anymore; we especially like this one where you can mail them in, but there are other services if you look into it. Resist the urge to start accumulating more random products; after all, that’s what got you into all this clutter in the first place! Now, enjoy your simplified life!
Do you have any tips on implementing a cleaner beauty regimen? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!