Clean Beauty Makeup - Beach Beauty Bar and Acne Clinic
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Clean Beauty Makeup

Clean beauty makeup or clean beauty, just like “clean eating”, has become a popular buzzword in the realm of wellness. It is meant to describe cosmetics formulated without harmful ingredients. Unfortunately, clean beauty is a term that is neither officially defined nor regulated anywhere in the world.

The influence of organic makeup has had a huge ripple effect on the beauty world. Over the past few years, we’ve seen a stream of new brands come out with labels like “clean beauty,” “natural,” and “sustainable” – a sign of how far the clean movement has grown. But it wasn’t long ago that these same products were once considered “crunchy” or relegated to a dusty bottom shelf.

Do you want clear skin?

It’s a known fact that the average woman uses 12 personal care products daily. Exposing her to hundreds of chemicals – NONE of which are required to be tested for safety!

As consumers, you should be concerned. This begs the question – Where do you even start on a path to a cleaner beauty routine? We’ve done our homework on this subject. There are some very alarming facts about how clean our beauty products are NOT.

Does Clean Beauty Makeup Mean It’s Safe For Your Skin?

Not only is the beauty industry self-regulated (meaning anyone can make a “clean beauty” claim with no oversight), but America’s cosmetic regulations for safe products is 81 years old. That’s older than most modern beauty companies. Older than some of your grandmothers!

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also has no authority to recall toxic beauty products unless a manufacturer volunteers. While the European Union has banned more than 1,000 chemicals common in personal care products, the United States has banned just 11. It’s downright shameful to think about.


What To Look For in Clean Beauty Makeup

Take a look at any product label in your medicine cabinet and – yeah. Not good.

I believe that the current clean beauty trend has become overly extreme. It often results in products that are ineffective and more irritating. Just because ingredients are natural doesn’t guarantee safety or performance. Many times, the reverse is true. They are inconsistent in quality, performance, and stability.

When you are shopping for clean beauty products, there are a few ingredients to watch for. These ingredients are the harmful ones that should NOT be in your beauty products.


Parabens are a group of preservatives and antimicrobial chemicals that prevent the growth of nasty things like bad bacteria and mold in your beauty products. That doesn’t sound awful, right? The sad reality is, they mimic estrogen in the human body which causes reproductive organ harm.

That’s not the only thing parabens do. They disrupt thyroid function, create hormone-related cancers and obesity and exposure to parabens through beauty products has also recently been linked to early onset puberty in young girls.  

The European Commission has banned several types of parabens for use in personal care products. To name a few: isopropyl-, isobutyl-, phenyl-, benzyl-, and pentylparabens.

All five are still approved for use in the United States.

Fragrances and Phthalates

The word fragrance is a catchall term that disguises up to 3,000 synthetic or natural chemicals used to make a beauty product smell delicious. The worst part about that is, fragrances are considered a trade secret and therefore do not have to be disclosed.

Where there is the vague ingredient “fragrance”, there are phthalates – most of the time, anyway.

Phthalates are linked to reproductive and hormonal harm in children and men. Phthalate exposure causes obesity, type 2 diabetes, reduced sperm count, breast cancers, reproductive malformation, infertility, and cardiovascular events.


Also known as silicon dioxide, silica is used as an absorbent, anticaking, and abrasive agent in everything from oral care products to foundation.

For acne-prone patients, silicones can act as a ‘barrier’ and trap oil, dirt, and dead skin cells, making acne worse. Silicon in makeup creates a barrier that traps other comedogenic substances, thereby increasing the chance of an acne flare. Most makeup primer is made up of some percentage of silicon.

Clean Beauty Buzzwords

Clean, organic, cruelty-free – when it comes to beauty products, the FDA has yet to regulate how brands can use these words. Definitions are subjective and often change from company to company, package to package. Making it nearly impossible to navigate or decipher the truth from green washing.

So what is the difference between all these buzzwords? Here are a few common buzzwords for some much-needed clarity.

What Does CLEAN Mean?

Safe for people and the planet, clean means that a beauty product considered human and environmental health using a nontoxic element as a baseline and plant-based ingredients for active results.

What Does GREEN Mean?

The word green should mean that the product does no harm to the environment. For instance, a reef-safe sunscreen with biodegradable packaging would be labeled green. However, this is a wishy-washy term with no true definition and is usually used as an umbrella for any product that claims to protect the planet’s resources.

What Does ORGANIC Mean?

Personal care products that are certified to be at least 95 percent organic will bear an official USDA Organic Seal. In an effort to avoid pesticides, the clean beauty industry has begun to use organic, plant-based ingredients in products wherever possible. Certification is expensive. Many smaller brands will independently label ingredients that are organic on packaging, despite not carrying an official seal.

What Does NONTOXIC Mean?

Water and oxygen can be toxic in the wrong dose. So when a beauty product is labeled nontoxic, it likely means that the ingredients have not been shown to cause adverse health effects at the levels found inside the formula. In the clean beauty space, nontoxic means that a product shouldn’t include any ingredient that’s been deemed toxic at any dose by a third-party resource.

Is Clean Beauty Always Safe For Acne?

No.  Clean beauty loves shea butter, coconut oil, etc.

We recently reviewed a bunch of clean beauty brands in our makeup membership… and let’s just say clean beauty isn’t the same as clear beauty!

Products like coconut oil have one of the highest comedogenic ratings. That it’s a big problem for sensitive or blemish-prone skin. This means coconut oil can’t penetrate the pores and actually can suffocate your skin and will clog your pores because it sits on top of the skin.

Even your most tried-and-true cosmetics could be the reason you’re suddenly breaking out!

Not all products in any one specific brand are safe…

For instance, Bare Minerals has always been thought of as being acne safe. Except, they have some products that contain pore clogging ingredients–not safe at all. MAC makeup is infamously known for its pore clogging makeup, but they actually have several products that won’t break you out.

There are thousands of cosmetic ingredients so it would be next to impossible to know whether each one of them is pore-clogging or not.

Sound like a lot of work trying to figure all this out?

That’s where we come in…!

Banish Your Breakouts

Wouldn’t it be great if you had your own personal beauty consultant at your side when you’re out shopping for new product or when you have questions about your current ones?

Are you tired of buying expensive makeup only to get home and find that it breaks your skin out after a single use?

Would you love to have an acne specialist carefully curate a list of hundreds of products that are acne safe?

We’re in the business of making people feel good from the inside out, and that’s why we took the time to create an exclusive Makeup Membership where we give our members full access to all the pore-clogging details of their favorite brands.

We conduct an in-depth review of a brand’s full makeup line to identify which products are acne-safe and which ones are not. We provide you with the tools to learn how to review products for yourself with our guidance. Ingredient intelligence is a powerful skill in the world of clear skin!

The Makeup Membership

Whether you’re a skincare therapist who specializes in all things related to skincare and makeup or you’re a beauty junkie with little knowledge on the subject, there are certain topics in every area of life that are complex to everyone regardless of their level of expertise.

Take the guess work out of your product decisions, join our Makeup Membership and let us do the work for you so you can have peace of mind when purchasing the products you need.

We review and add new products to the list every month so you will have plenty of acne-safe options to choose from.

Knowing what ingredients are plugging your pores is a step in the right direction. Stop wondering and gain access to our full list of acne-safe makeup for a one time annual fee of only $89.

This is really a no brainer if you are a makeup junky like we are!

Do you love Mac makeup and don’t want to purchase an annual membership? Do not fret! You can purchase the individual brands alone and receive a downloadable pdf. Check out all of the individual brand reviews here.

A Final Note

I love that clean beauty is becoming more of an expectation, more of a norm, because as people continue to pick the clean product, it will pressure the other companies to start rethinking what they’re putting in those products that we are slathering on our faces, bodies, and family members.

The clean cosmetics movement definitely has us taking a closer look at what we put on our skin, which is a good thing. Avoiding these ingredients is a good place to start in your clear skin journey, but before you toss out your whole makeup bag – schedule an appointment with us so we can help you determine what exactly is causing your breakouts.

Cheers to clear!


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