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What is clean beauty really? And what should you consider when shopping for it? 

You are what you eat – this has long been the saying that would get most people to think a little longer about what they’re putting in their fridge let alone onto their plate. Recent years have made us more aware of how certain additives have a negative effect on both our bodies and lifestyle. And the tendency to read the ingredient labels is now also noticeable in the beauty industry where both brands and consumers alike are gravitating towards clean beauty; beauty products made with natural and clean ingredients. 

 

We have previously written about how S-beauty is making a name for itself partly due to its clean ingredients lists, but what is clean beauty exactly? The definition is not completely set in stone as terms such as green, natural or clean can have different interpretations. However, for the Danish beauty brand NUORI the definition is quite simple. “For us clean beauty means 100% natural formulas, where every single ingredient is of the highest standard,” explains Ann-Marie Ronlund Jensen, Brand Manager at NUORI. A skincare label built around fresh products made of natural ingredients, and simultaneously one of the leading brands within clean beauty in Scandinavia.

“There is not always a clear divide between traditional beauty and clean beauty, but as a main rule we think that products free of potentially damaging ingredients are best for you.” 

“We experience more and more consumers familiarizing themselves with what beauty products actually contain, and we’re daily receiving exciting questions from customers all over the globe regarding specific ingredients, concentrations or compositions of formulas. This also shows that the interest for clean beauty is applicable on a global scale,” Ronlund Jensen says. 

 

But within the borders of EU – who are known for being good at regulating the use of different ingredients in cosmetics and skincare – the discussion around the synthetic preservatives and artificial additives that are technically legal can seem unnecessary. And as the trend of clean beauty grows, so do questions whether natural necessarily equals better as well as whether the clean beauty movement is anything but a marketing stunt. “There is quite a few brands, which will call themselves natural but when you look further at the ingredients they use, they are only around 70-80% natural. The term Greenwashing has therefore also emerged, which essentially means that a brand makes misleading statements. Making a product seem more clean, healthier and more environmental friendly than it actually is,” Ronlund Jensen explains. 

 

But at the team behind NUORI it’s first and foremost about creating efficient products with the highest level of freshness, and this is best achieved with the use of natural ingredients. “There is not always a clear divide between traditional beauty and clean beauty, but as a main rule we think that products free of potentially damaging ingredients are best for you,” Ronlund Jensen says. “For us it’s important to create 100% natural formulas – even though the last few percentages of synthetic ingredients are really difficult to avoid.” 

 

Have you jumped on the clean beauty wave but don’t always remember to take a closer look on the ingredients list before adding products to your shopping bag? What is or isn’t clean beauty can be confusing so it’s best to put on your critical glasses when shopping for it. “Our best advice is to be aware of what you hear and read about the beauty industry, and do you own research. It isn’t only relevant to see what’s been left out of a product but more so what’s actually in it,” Ronlund Jensen explains. 

 

Swipe through the gallery for the best clean beauty products from ILLUM Beauty Hall.

Remember, you can shop all products directly from your phone with ILLUM On Demand.

Editorial staff

Photographer: Andreas Pless
Stylist: Tine Daring