Whole Foods Pilgrimage #1: How I’m Greening My Basic Beauty Routine

After my eye-opening journey through the depths of Skindeep and purging my most beloved bath and facial products from my bathroom, it became time to venture back into the real world to start rebuilding a healthier stash. Why? …because it’s fun to pamper yourself, and people kinda like it when your hair looks clean.

So, I zipped up my favorite slouchy boots and headed over to my local Whole Foods store. Turns out, it smells a lot like fish. And the age-old, needle-in-a-haystack challenge of trying to find anything in a crowded aisle with a zillion colored bottles? It. Was. Exhausting.

Here’s what I ended up purchasing:

1.  Andalou Naturals Shampoo and Conditioner ($10 each, but you can nab them for $5 on sale)

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Skindeep score: 2

Verdict: Love them!!! They smell delicious and work well, leaving my pixie locks glossy and baby butt soft. Will buy again!

2.  Andalou Naturals Styling Gel ($10 normally, $5 on sale)

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Skindeep score: 1

Verdict: I use a nickel-sized amount after showering to smooth down my pixie crop haircut, pre-blow dryer. It works like a charm without weighing down my waves, yet keeps them smooth and shiny after I blow them dry. Fabulous purchase! Will buy again!

3.  Andalou Naturals Facial Scrub ($12)

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Skindeep score: 1

Verdict: I’ve been using this about once a week for the past month and a half, and it gets the job done. The sand grains are very fine, which is great for a gentle exfoliation. It’s a bit rough straight out of the jar, so I’ve found it works best with a smidgen of water. However, I would prefer an exfoliator with a more glycerine-like texture to replace my formerly favorite, paraben-laden bottle of Clean & Clear Morning Burst Exfoliator. Might buy again.

4.  Dr. Bronner’s Magic Bar Soap ($3.30)

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Skindeep score: 1

Verdict: Cue the lecture from my dad about the differences between detergent and soap. Turns out the body washes and “soaps” I’ve been using over the years are actually detergents, not soap. Long story short, this actually is soap, and as far as soap goes, I’m hooked! The smell is light and airy, it foams up wonderfully on my favorite loofah, and the bar lasts a long while. Best of all, according to the tubes of the internet, it has a ton of uses! I would have taken a photo of my bar, but I’ve used it so much that it’s dwindled down to a sliver. Will buy again ASAP for both my shower and my sink, and I can’t wait to try the liquid version!

5. Cleanwell All-Natural Antibacterial Foaming Hand Wash ($5)

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Skindeep score: 1-2

Verdict: At first, I loved the refreshing minty smell. But, after the first few days, the scent became a little bit gagging. Won’t buy again. Instead, I’m going with more of Dr. Bronner’s soaps.

6.  Badger SPF 30 Sunscreen ($16)

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Skindeep score: 1

Verdict: Thick. Very thick. It filled my pores and left my face looking much paler than normal, so much so that I end up buffing on bronzer to bring my face back to its typical paleness. I love this brand, but I also enjoy not looking like a vampire. Will buy again, but I’m nixing the daily use and instead saving this one for the beach.

7. Blum Naturals Daily Cleansing and Makeup Remover Towelettes ($7.70)

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Skindeep score: 1

Verdict: Ehhh. They’re okay, but they hardly compare to the toxin-laden Ponds Exfoliating Wipes I had to toss. These get the job done for light makeup, and the smell is pleasant and easy. But, on heavy eye makeup nights, I have to use two or three. Might buy again, but I’d really like to find thicker wipes with better grip.

All in all, I’m pleased with my first haul and am excited to pick out new goodies to try when these run out. What are your favorite Whole Foods brands?

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