By now you should figure that living a minimalist beauty lifestyle is more than just how you do your make up or how decluttered your makeup bag is, it’s also what you put on your skin that matters. In fact, great skincare and makeup are only as good as the ingredients that go into making them. Knowing what those ingredients do and why they matter should be a part of your purchasing process almost as much as selecting the perfect shade. So in order to help you down this path, we’d like to share some of our knowledge of what goes into making some of your favorite beauty products.
“THE SECRET INGREDIENT IS ALWAYS THE MOST SIMPLE”
– Rachel Wolchin
For starters, the innovators and creators at Undone Beauty are sticklers for what goes into cosmetics. Firstly because we believe that ingredients should be clean, cruelty-free, and vegan, but mainly because we take pride in selecting the best and most effective ingredients that will give your skin a natural beauty edge. In fact, most ingredients in Undone Beauty’s products are multitasking and packed with benefits. “Minimalist beauty. major benefits.” is our philosophy that we apply throughout the entire product development process. But before we get into too much detail, it’s probably best to start off with an explanation of the magic behind making makeup.
The good stuff always starts with a blend of ingredients that make up a product’s base. In cosmetics, chemists are always looking to find the perfect balance between viscosity (how thick or thin a product’s texture is), emulsion (how the ingredients, especially the oils and water-based ingredients blend together) and, of course, conditioning (how the product helps your skin take in and maintain moisture). Now though a lot of these ingredients sometimes sound a bit “chemical-ly”, they are actually our non-toxic besties that are essential to our products’ unique feel and qualities.
- Glycerin and Lecithin: These vegetable-derived emollients (designed to soften the skin) are invaluable because they give a smooth texture to creams, help condition the skin and give you a lasting dewy effect; like our Unfoundation New Light Coverage Formula.
- Caprylic and Capric Triglyceride: Despite being a mouthful to say, this key ingredient is derived from a mix of coconuts and glycerin. It’s a fatty acid, which the skin uses to replenish its surface and resist moisture loss. Basically, it helps lock in moisture like in our Under/Over Powder primer.
- Sodium Chloride: Your 9th-grade science teacher would be proud if you could remember that this compound is actually salt. At very tiny levels, salt actually increases viscosity -- in other words, it can make the formula dewier and less thick.
- Calcium Carbonate: This is simply another type of salt, a calcium salt. Again, used at the tiniest levels in the chemistry of the product it helps create opacity for a greater color impact. Our 3-in-1 Lip to Cheek cream palette is actually made up of three different opacities.
- Sodium Stearate: This is a sodium salt of stearic acid, which is a naturally occurring fatty acid. This ingredient is an emulsifier, meaning it helps oils and water-based ingredients merge together instead of separating; so it’s essential in a product like our water-based Water Bronzer.
From there, it’s time to have some fun with the key ingredients and pigments that set products apart from each other. In our Undone Beauty product line-up, we have some absolute favorite key ingredients that do so much more for your skin and have been tried and tested over the years to offer proven benefits. In fact, you may actually be familiar with a number of these ingredients because their application in cosmetics is more common and the benefits of each have been studied for decades (more so than snail mucin or deep-sea kelp). Ultimately, they are trusted by consumers and skincare experts around the world.
- Coconut extract: Derived from the fleshy part of a coconut, this extract is valued for its hydrating properties and is easily absorbed into the skin. Because it is also a humectant (that’s science talk for the ability to retain moisture) it is a star ingredient in most of our top-selling products from our Unfoundation to our Water Bronzer to our Lip Life Balm.
- Coconut oil: The use of coconut oil can be traced back to as early as 1500 BCE when it was first recorded in ancient Ayurvedic texts for its medicinal benefits, though it has had its place in ancient cultures perhaps long before then where ever it was found to grow, especially in Central and South America. Today, this glow-boosting ingredient melts onto lips and skin to hydrate (without that greasy feeling), rejuvenate, and smooth. If you want to get a taste of those benefits try our Light on Lip lipstick.
- Castor oil: Among its many benefits of being a natural hydrator that conditions and nourishes your hair, skin, and nails, when Castor oil is used in cosmetics, it allows for clean and vegan products to not need artificial preservatives. For that reason, we love to use it in all of our mascaras and eye shadows as a conditioner that actually helps prevent lash breakage and leads to healthier, longer lashes.
- Aloe Vera: The list of benefits and uses of aloe vera, even in its purest form, would be just too much to go over, however, the reason we infuse this star ingredient in our makeup is for its protective and hydrating properties. Found in our Light on Lip lipstick, this natural moisturizer will help your lips stay hydrated with every swipe.
- Shea: This skin superfood is full of antioxidant-rich vitamins with anti-aging properties and replenishes your moisture to give your skin new life while restoring elasticity. You can find shea in our Lip Life Balm. No wonder it’s our best seller!
- Jojoba: This powerful extract is packed with antioxidants that are meant to protect you from free radicals. Free radicals are those invisible particles that damage your skin cells. Although they are unavoidable, filling yourself inside and out with antioxidants helps prevent oxidative stress from too many free radicals entering your body. Our new Under/Over Powder, which is meant to prime and protect your makeup, contains this extract.
- Rose Hip: This powerhouse essential oil helps the skin on your lips stay youthful and plump. It’s chock full of vitamin C and 32 other minerals and vitamins like beta carotene and calcium. Because it has a reddish tint to it, we’ve included it in all of our Lip Life Balms for a natural rosiness.
Nowadays, it seems that most brands feature the benefit of a key ingredient but few consider being clean or vegan or cruelty-free. That’s why, now that you are living a minimalist beauty lifestyle with values and principles that are in alignment with who you are, it’s important your makeup follows that philosophy. So, check the labels for clean, vegan, and cruelty-free and do your research with every beauty product you may purchase. Dig deeper to truly understand the reason behind every ingredient in the fine print and seek out those products that offer those benefits most adapted for you and your skincare or makeup needs. Explore where they come from, where they are sourced, and even how they are sourced. Because nothing should get in the way of you and your beautiful and natural skin.
Oh and just to reassure you, it’s not only what goes into our stuff that makes it great, but it’s also what we choose not to include that helps. So as a reminder, all of our products are free of phthalates, butyl-paraben, propyl-paraben, formaldehyde, formaldehyde-donors, NPEs, Triclosan, Triclocarban, BHA, BHT, Hydroquinone, Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Oxybenzone, and Retinyl Palmitate. We don’t expect you to know how to pronounce them because even we have trouble.
– Undone Beauty