If you’re following me on Instagram, then you know that I’ve recently started reading Magnifeco by Kate Black, which the cover of the book states is “your head-to-toe guide to ethical fashion and non-toxic beauty”. Now I just finished the first chapter, which focuses on beauty, but let me tell you, this book is so, so, so much more.
My interest in ethical, sustainable and eco-friendly products began with watching The True Cost, a documentary that inspired my very first blog post about fast fashion. I’ve been pretty focused on clothing and related things like shoes, bags, and accessories, but I am now convinced that I have to change more than just my closet and shopping habits. I need to change my hair products, my makeup and even my feminine hygiene products. Reading this first chapter gave me a similar feeling to when I watched The True Cost – I always sort of knew about it, but pretended it was a problem that didn’t exist.
Right off the bat, Magnifeco‘s first chapter hits you with some statistics and facts that kind of blow your mind. For example:
Since its 1938 launch, the FDA has banned only 8 ingredients, and restricted 3, bringing the total of banned or restricted to 11.
Black then goes on to point out that Canada’s list has over 600 banned or restricted ingredients, while the European Union list has 1,300 chemicals banned or restricted from cosmetics. Isn’t that crazy? Being Canadian makes me feel a little better about it, but even we’re at a 700-chemical difference from the EU.
It’s a harsh reminder that no one is really looking out for consumers. Here’s another quote that floored me:
…ingredients known to be linked to cancer can be found in over one-third of cosmetic and personal care products.
Read that again. Known to be. Not new, unknown chemicals that have yet to be tested. Not chemicals that have conflicting laboratory results and are still being debated. Known. Seriously, we lather ourselves in cancer-causing chemicals and then wonder why everyone’s getting sick.
I’m not pointing fingers or trying to make anyone feel bad. Not a single product in my makeup bag right now is organic, and what I put on my face today probably contains those dangerous chemicals too. But the fact that we spend our money on this is kind of ridiculous.
That’s not to say that we should completely throw makeup out the window. Maybe that would be the ideal path, but I know I’m not ready to get rid of my concealer and mascara, and lots of you probably aren’t either. Magnifeco offers up many alternative brands for everything you could think of, not forgetting about the men and products like shaving cream and cologne.
One of my favourite resources found in this chapter has got to be EWG’s Skin Deep website , a cosmetic database where various products are rated on a 7-point scale of how “hazardous” it is. It’s a cool place to browse either by category or by looking up products you currently use to see how they compare.
Last but not least, I love how Magnifeco also presents some of the most common certifications for non-toxic beauty brands that you can take note of and look for next time you’re making a purchase. Some focus on being (legitimately) organic, others on being cruelty-free. Whatever your main concern, there’s one for you.
Chapter 2 is about clothing, and I cannot wait to find out where else I can shop without worrying about supporting cheap labor. Stay tuned, Reading ‘Magnifeco’ – Part 2 will be coming soon!
Please note: this is not a sponsored post. I’m just really loving this book!