I am a sucker for products of all kinds. But the wise old lady emerging from within me casts a critical eye on the products I allow near my skin these days. As a teen with volatile acne, I was all in on the Oxy pads and the Clearasil. This dried the crap out of my skin and made it way worse. It took a long time to learn my lesson. I was just obsessed with getting rid of the bumps and lumps versus actually caring what I was putting on my body.
Then I sort of elevated my skin care game in my mid-20s, actually going for the occasional facial and relying on a spa's reputation for advising me on what to get.
Then I started realizing that there is actually no great data out there on most of the skin care products that infiltrate the most popular products. If they're popular, it means they have to be relatively affordable and storable on a lot of shelves and this typically means synthetic additives. I am not a pseudoscientist and I am not going to sit here and tell you that these additives are going to give you face cancer. Because they probably won't.
But your skin is a vast and active organ that absorbs all sort of stuff! "If you're going to put something on your face every day, why not keep it simple and plant-based?" says my wise inner lady.
I wanted something I could afford and that was super stripped down, from an ingredient perspective. And I guess a lot of people have been searching for the same because my options just cracked open in the past six months.
My search began at Sephora where I discovered Farmacy. I freaking love their Night Balm and their Exfoliating Grains. The latter is not harsh at all and lathers up real good. It comes in powder form which means it is going to last a while. The lady at Sephora tried to get me to buy their UK line called Fresh. I went home with a sample and my skin felt tight and dry after using their rose line. Their ingredient list is full of synthetics and I am just over it.
Then I was perusing my favourite shop in town, White Elephant, and they just started carrying some Northlore products, along with Wildcraft and Garden City Essentials. I have only used the Plains Mud Mask above from Northlore, this toner and this make up remover from Wildcraft and this awesome deodorant from Garden City Essentials.
About the deodorant. I know. I don't mess around with bad deodorants. I will take my aluminum-infested drugstore brand any day, any time, if it keeps my armpits dry. But this is actually better than my Secret brand. No joke, a tub of the deodorant lasts longer, feels better and smells nicer. I cannot make this stuff up.
These brands are all Canadian, except Farmacy which is based in Vermont which is basically Canada, and will be Canada if Trump gets elected in November.
They are all affordable and usually cheaper than synthetic counterparts.
They are easy enough to find.
They smell nice.
They are full of nice things.
I like clean sundries, and I cannot lie.