Boo: The Scary Side of Wedding Makeup

While you may be thinking we’re about to show you a photographic essay of smudged lipstick, mascara-stained cheeks, and a face so bronzed you’d assume the bride was heading to a side gig as a Living Statue after her reception, we actually want to talk about the scary side of wedding makeup that you can’t see.

Did you know that in the US, the FDA has only banned or restricted the use of eleven chemicals in cosmetic products? When you compare this to the over 1,300 chemicals regulated by the EU, it kind of makes your head spin, doesn’t it?

While the state of California recently signed the Toxic-Free Cosmetics Act that banned an additional 24 ingredients in products sold there, at this point in time, it’s pretty much up to us as consumers to make sure what we’re putting on our skin is as safe as possible.

Why the concern? A lot of the EU’s 1,300 banned or restricted chemicals are linked to skin and respiratory allergies, and many of them are known endocrine disruptors and/or carcinogenic. (This means they’re going to mess with your hormones and potentially cause cancer.)

To help you find the safest cosmetics for your wedding day (and always), we’ll go over:

  • What chemicals you should avoid in makeup and why
  • How to know if your wedding makeup is safe
  • Where to find clean wedding makeup on the North Shore

Scroll down to learn more!

What Chemicals Should I Avoid In Makeup And Why?

According to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, you should avoid the following ingredients because they’ve been linked to endocrine disruption, neurotoxicity, cancer, developmental and reproductive toxicity and/or skin, eye and respiratory irritation. There are also concerns for bioaccumulation and ecotoxicity.

Ingredients to Avoid in Makeup

  • BHA & BHT
  • Ethanolamine Compounds (MEA, DEA, TEA AND OTHERS)
  • Formaldehyde & Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives (such as Quaternium-15)
  • Lead
  • Parabens
  • Petrochemicals
  • Phthalates
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
  • Synthetic fragrances
  • Talc
  • Triclosan

Click here to learn more about all the known chemicals and contaminants to avoid.

How Do I Know If My Wedding Makeup Is Safe?

Unfortunately, sometimes it’s not as easy as reading an ingredient list because toxic chemicals are really good at lurking under confusing names. Furthermore, sometimes the chemical you’re trying to avoid is actually a contaminate from another chemical, so it won’t be listed… Sneaky, we know.

Don’t fret though! Since 1994, the amazingly wonderful Environmental Working Group (EWG) has been working diligently to shine a spotlight on outdated legislation, harmful agricultural practices and industry loopholes that pose a risk to our health and the health of our environment. While their work certainly covers the use of pesticides in food, the presence of forever chemicals in water and toxins in cleaning products, they also have a huge sector dedicated to finding safe cosmetics and personal care products.

In 2004, they actually launched EWG’s Skin Deep® cosmetic database which not only goes into detail on which chemicals you should be avoiding and why, but they also have a super easy to understand danger-rating system for nearly 70,000 products and 9,000 ingredients on the market.

Further to using their website tto learn more about what could be lurking in your makeup and wreaking havoc on your body, EWG also has a EWG VERIFIED™ certification that a product can hold.

What does the EWG VERIFIED™ mark mean?

“The EWG VERIFIED™ mark on a product indicates that the product meets EWG’s strictest standards for transparency and health.

EWG VERIFIED products cannot contain any ingredients on EWG’s “Unacceptable” list, which includes ingredients with health, ecotoxicity and/or contamination concerns.

EWG VERIFIED products must meet EWG’s standards for ingredient disclosure on the label; products with the VERIFIED mark are made by manufacturers that have been fully transparent with EWG about that product’s ingredients, including fragrance ingredients.

EWG VERIFIED product manufacturers must develop and follow current good manufacturing practices to further ensure the safety of their products.”

Click here to learn more about EWG and Skin Deep ratings here.

Where Can I Find Clean Wedding Makeup in the North Shore?

If you’re getting married on the North Shore and want clean hair and makeup services, you’ve come to the right place. At Bryony & Birch, we’re passionate about only using products that are kind to our bodies both outside and in.

When you book your wedding hair and/or wedding makeup with Bryony & Birch, you’ll get to choose from brands like RPM, Sachajuan, Mr. Smith, Color.Me by Kevin Murphy, and Cezanne.

Click here to learn more about the brands Bryony & Birch carries.

How Does a Year of Pre-wedding Bliss Sound?

Pretty good, right?

Planning a wedding is stressful! From trying to pick a venue to having to select a menu that caters to allergies, intolerances and religious practices, it takes up more headspace than you think!
As a collective of hairstylists, makeup artists, photographers and videographers who’ve been in the North Shore wedding game a long time, we’ve actually put our brains together to create the type of wedding prep package we know we’d want and need before our big day.
The Bryony Bridal Experience includes tailored packages with services like:

  • Health and fitness: yoga, personal training, reiki and crystal healing
  • Hair prep: color correction
  • Wedding party hair: bride, bridesmaids and flower girl
  • Makeup services: upon request
  • Customizable photo & video packages: engagement, ceremony and reception

It doesn’t matter if you live in Amesbury, Newburyport, or Boston, you can easily tailor a Bryony Bridal Experience to suit your needs.

Click here to learn more about how we can give you a year of pre-wedding bliss!

Continue reading The Bryony & Birch Times:

Why Non-Toxic Hair Dye Matters (And The Clean Hair Care Brands We Trust)

It doesn’t matter if you’re dying your hair to cover greys, to balance out your balayage or because you heard the rumor that blondes have more fun… you need to be questioning what is in your hair dye. (Especially if it’s coming from a box in a grocery store!)

At Bryony & Birch Hair Loft, we steer VERY clear of mainstream box dyes not only because they physically can’t achieve the standards we’re aiming for, but because they contain a number of potentially harmful chemicals such as ammonia, PPDs, nitro dyes and other various endocrine disrupting chemicals.

With that being said, professional salon dyes aren’t necessarily free of those nasty chemicals either! That’s why we opt for brands who only formulate their dyes, toners and other hair care products with natural and clean ingredients.

Since we’re lovers of hair and know just how transformative a color change can be, we’ve searched long and hard to find the best non-toxic hair dye for our Amesbury hair salon!

To help you achieve the color you’re looking for in the safest way possible, we’ll go over:

  • PPD and other potentially harmful chemicals lurking in hair dye
  • Non-toxic hair dye options
  • The clean hair care brands we trust

Scroll down to learn more!

PPD and other Potentially Harmful Chemicals Lurking in Hair Dye

While some people may be at risk for developing skin, eye and respiratory irritation from exposures to common chemicals found in hair dye, one of the more serious concerns is exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals and carcinogens.

Ingredients We Like To Avoid in Hair Dyes + Hair Care Products

  • Ammonia
  • Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives
  • PPD (Paraphenylenediamine)
  • PTD (Para-toluenediamine)
  • Phthalates
  • Resorcinol
  • SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)
  • Synthetic Fragrance

Why are endocrine disrupting chemicals bad?
When introduced into your body, endocrine disrupting chemicals can mimic hormones and interfere with your own hormone production. This can lead to infertility, PCOS, a decline in sperm count and even cervical cancer and breast cancer.

Non-toxic hair dye options

If you’re looking for safer hair dye options, the first step is reading the ingredients list to make sure it doesn’t contain any of the above chemicals.

At the Bryony & Birch Hair Loft, we opt for clean hair dye brands such as COLOR.ME by KEVIN.MURPHY. While we love it for being free of known endocrine disrupting chemicals, it also achieves vibrant color without damaging hair.

As stylists who love to go from brunette to blonde to blue, having a product that won’t cost us our hair and body health is incredibly important.

“What goes inside the tube is just as important as the colour it creates. The choices we made are PPD free, ammonia free and naturally derived ingredients like Aloe Vera, Honey, Shea Butter and Pomegranate.”
– Kevin Murphy

The clean hair care brands we trust

Equally as important as your hair dye is your hair care! Think about it: when you’re shampooing and conditioning, you’re usually standing in a hot steamy shower that makes it EXTRA easy for chemicals to absorb into your skin, eyes, mouth and nose.

Just like hair dye, get used to reading ingredients lists, but be sure nothing has anything ending with ‘paraben’ ‘or ‘PEG.’

Chemicals We Like To Avoid In Hair Care Products

  • Parabens
  • PEGS
  • Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (and SLES)
  • Pesticides + Herbicides
  • Synthetic Fragrances/ Parfum
  • Dyes starting with FD&C or D&C

At Bryony & Birch Hair Loft in Amesbury MA, we sell clean hair care products that we know, love and trust! We even have a formaldehyde-free hair smoothing treatment!

RPM CBD-Infused Products
CBD-infused products that put hemp to work from head to toe. We love that this brand provides soothing moisture that feels like luxury and is safe on skin.

Experience the beauty of simplicity. Made with all-natural, simple ingredients that nourish your hair—nothing more and nothing less.

Mr. Smith
High end meets affordable with this Australian brand. Experience clean beauty to condition, cleanse, style, and treat. The Hair Loft at Bryony + Birch is one of the first salons to carry Mr. Smith products on the East Coast.

Cezanne delivers the results of a traditional Keratin smoothing treatment without the harmful chemicals. Cezanne smoothing treatment is 100% formaldehyde-free. It’s also free from any other kinds of aldehydes and harmful toxins and it’s as long-lasting as the current top products. It’s hypoallergenic and dermatologist tested, won’t irritate the scalp and won’t release any noxious gases.

Want to book a hair appointment at Bryony & Birch Hair Loft?

Get in touch! We have three wonderful stylists for you to choose from starting with our owner and lead stylist, Katie Cavic.

Katie has 15 years experience behind the chair, and spent the last 10 years cutting hair at Judy Jetson Salon in Cambridge, Mass. Katie’s skills range from cut, color, balayage, and specialty smoothing treatments. Katie works with clients of all ages, the whole family is welcome!

Click here to discover all of Bryony & Birch Hair Loft’s Hair Stylists and to book your clean hair salon appointment!