My Zero Waste Makeup Routine
My mom didn’t let me start wearing makeup until middle school, and even then I could only wear lipgloss. Throughout high school I never really saw the point as most days I had soccer after school which would mean that it would melt down my face.
However, I also had cystic acne from ages 13-20. If you’re lucky enough to have never had it, it’s essential big red pimples that form deep under your skin. They don’t always have a head and they hurt to the touch. Not fun.
I religiously always carried around a little thing of concealer so I could try to cover it up (it didn’t but it sort of helped my self esteem).
My freshman year of college I decided to try out foundation. I clearly didn’t know what I was doing as I bought a shade too light for my face and didn’t add color back with blush r bronzer. I looked like a ghost. But I did pair this with concealer and mascara.
My sophomore year I slowly found a skin care routine that worked for me (and I bet my hormones evening out from puberty helped.) I stopped caking my face in foundation, and instead only stuck with my concealer and mascara.
But even before I was into living a zero waste lifestyle I was passionate about having natural and organic products. Your skin absorbs whatever you put on it so why would you want to put on chemicals that are known to be carcinogens?
So this focus on organic products fit in well with transition to my low impact lifestyle. And over this past year or two I’ve found some awesome products that don’t have super scary ingredients and come in non plastic packaging.
As a huge bonus, I’ve saved a ton of money with these. First because I’ve obviously paired down the products I use. But secondly, these are high quality products that last me a long time. To show that, I’ve included the daily cost of all my products :)
If you’re ever curious about the possible toxicity of your makeup/household items, please check out the EWG Database. Based on the ingredients, it will tell you how hazards it might be.
What I Wear Every Day:
After I first curl my lashes, I wet the mascara spoolie that I saved from my W3ll People mascara and run it over the black cream. Apply to lashes and you’re done!
If you’re used to using conventional mascara, please understand that these natural ones won’t do the exact job that you're used it. They simply don’t have the same ingredients to do so.
This mascara does a pretty good job separating my lashes and making them black (my tips are blonde naturally). It holds a curl somewhat ok, but not for all day. And don’t try cutting onions while wearing this unless you want to look like a racoon.
But I’d rather wipe away a little black smudge under my eyes every couple of hours that put something toxic so close to my eyeballs.
Longevity: As I just started using this a month ago, I’m not sure how long it will last me. I’ll assume one year with daily use (on the conservative side).
Daily Cost: \$0.04
I love RMS Beauty and use their concealer religiously— no amount of sleep or cold compresses will eliminate these under eye bags. This was a product I found before I transitioned to a zero waste lifestyle and I’m so happy that their packaging is in glass with a metal lid.
Hands down a favorite product of mine. And as a bonus, this little tin with last me like 3 years, even with daily use.
Longevity: 3 years with daily use
Daily Cost: \$0.03
Although I have bushy af eyebrows, I fill them in quickly with a DIY powder I made:
Super simple recipe:
Mix cocoa and activated charcoal powder
Price: \$25 for both bags I bought pre-zero waste
Longevity: Honestly, I have no clue when this will run out there’s so much. I’ll assume 5 years with daily use.
Daily Cost: \$0.01
Total Daily Price: \$0.08
For Special Occasions
Coming clean on this one you guys. I’m still finishing up one I bought a while ago from Tarte Cosmetics.
I bought it right before I went on the interview cycle during college because I wanted complete face coverage to help my self-esteem.
While I love that it’s vegan and cruelty free, and in a glass bottle with a metal top, I’d like to invest in one that has more natural ingredients.
I hardly use this one now expect for conferences I go to for work. Seems like I’ll have this one for a while.
So, another RMS beauty product I love is their highlighter. It adds such a beautiful glow to the cheekbones. I’ve even turned some of my non-zero-waste, makeup-loving friends onto this one.
Ok I swear I’m not sponsored by RMS, I just love their stuff.
So hopefully it’s not a shock that I also love their cream blush! Warm it up in your fingers and gently rub into your cheeks for a warm look.
Zero Waste Makeup Companies
If you’re more into looking at companies may have, check out these sites. (Some are 100% zero waste and some have sustainable options, just fyi).
Wrapping it up!
My skin has gotten better since then thanks to my natural approach to skincare. But still, my skin isn’t perfect but I’m come to realize that no one cares and if they do fuxk them. I would rather spend that time I’d do my makeup by sleeping more or reading.
To each their own though, and if you like make up, keep doing you! There are some great zero waste make up companies out there that can let you pursue that passion without harming the environment.
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Hi, I'm Taylor
Amateur adult. Zero waste zealot. Personal finance fiend. Spicy food supporter. I’m an mid 20’s gal living in Denver, Colorado. My love of the outdoors has cultivated my zero waste lifestyle, which inadvertently fueled my passion for personal finance. Cheers to everyone interested in lessening their footprint while growing their wallet!