Swap To Safer – Clean Beauty Makeup Edition


Motherhood is not always glamorous. Days can elapse between showering, let alone doing hair and makeup. I needed something to bring the glamour back to my daily casual look, family-friendly affair, or – dare I say it? – kid-free date night. However, as a mom of two under two, I don’t have a ton of time for my beauty regimen. And, by “regimen,” I mean whatever I can slather and slap on my face in about 5 minutes or less.

Secondly, I need clean beauty products free of toxic or questionable ingredients since my son’s version of a “kiss” is to open-mouth slime my face. I use the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Guide to determine the safety of a product. Using a database of research, a beauty product is scored from 1 to 10, with 1 being the cleanest/safest. I try to shop for beauty products that have an EWG score of 3 or less.

Lastly, I love to support other mom-businesses. Empowering other women is important to me as a #girlmom, and who knows more about quick, clean beauty than other busy moms?

Without further ado, here’s my guide to safe, clean, simple beauty products to get you looking your best each and every day!


Beautycounter is my go-to beauty and skincare brand. The company was founded by CEO Gregg Renfrew, a total #momboss! Over 1,800 harmful or questionable ingredients (called the Never List) are omitted from all formulations, far beyond the industry standard. Gregg lobbies Congress to reform the beauty industry to make all beauty products safer. Finally, Beauty Counter educates consumers about what is – and isn’t – in their formulations, and why. Ingredients for the products are ethically sourced, including mica. Almost all their packaging is recyclable, too. The things I love about this company are boundless! (Full disclosure – I am a consultant and earn a commission if you shop with me, though I started as a loyal customer for years and provide my honest recommendations).

Flawless in Five ($150). Six clean products, five quick minutes, one flawless look. Start by selecting the foundation you desire: the light-medium coverage Tint Skin or light-sheer coverage with SPF 20 Dew Skin. Then, choose your shade of powder blush, eyebrow pencil or gel, concealer pen, lengthening or volumizing mascara, and a lip gloss. I love how comprehensive & customizable this face kit is, bundled at a cost-savings for you!

To add a little more drama, add color from one of the vibrant and rich Velvet Eyeshadow Palettes; my favorite is the Romantic palette ($50). The palette colors are beautiful neutrals that can be mixed and matched to create unlimited looks.

 Josie Maran

Josie Maran is another mom-founded business featuring products made from fair-trade argan oil. Harvested by co-ops run by Moroccan women, the 100% argan oil in these products is a rich source of fatty acids & vitamin E that deeply hydrates tired mama skin. Plus, I am addicted to the light nutty scent! Josie Maran Cosmetics partners with Terracycle to upcycle packaging to picnic tables, office products, and more.

Lovely Beauty Set ($61). This set includes Argan Moonstone Drops that can be layered under your foundation for a radiant, dewy look, and Argan Lip Sting Plumping Butter for kissable lips, and Argan Black Oil Mascara, plus a cute pouch to carry your cosmetics.

Pair the Lovely Beauty Set with one of Josie Maran’s foundations: the light-medium coverage Argan Matchmaker Foundation Serum ($45) or the medium-full coverage Vibrancy Argan Oil Foundation Fluid ($45) and an Argan Color Stick ($22) for a fresh full-face look. The color stick can be used as blush, eye color, and lip color – bonus for multi-tasking!

NYX Professional Makeup

Not all clean beauty needs to be expensive! NYX Cosmetics is a very affordable line that is available at most drug stores, making it a good choice if you prefer brick-and-mortar stores and seeing a product in person. The products score low (~2, a clean rating) on the EWG Skin Deep Guide, making them safe. Also, it is cruelty-free and many products are vegan.

Start with a foundation; I like the Born To Glow! Naturally Radiant Foundation ($10) paired with the Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Contour Concealer stick ($8.50) for under eyes, blemishes, and highlighting.

The Such-A-Know-It-All Palette ($35) is packed full of eyeshadow choices, two shades of blush, and two shades of contouring powder. The combinations are limitless with this palette so you can easily create a breezy daytime look or a more dramatic look for date night.

Becoming a mom might mean a change in your beauty routine, but it doesn’t mean you can’t glam up – quickly and easily – on the daily! It also shouldn’t mean you have to compromise on the safety of the makeup you use on your skin, or that you expose your littles to.

Previous articleThe Interrupted Life
Next articleBudget-Friendly Family Activities Around Toledo
Kristen Ireland
Kristen lives in Ottawa Hills, OH, with her husband (Carl), two babies under two, (Graham and Maren), and a Frenchie (CeCe). Originally from Detroit, MI, she came to Toledo by way of Chicago, IL. She teaches high school science full time, as well as being a Beautycounter consultant and Toledo Moms contributor. For fun, she enjoys spending time with family, dining out, & traveling (as much as one can these days with two tiny humans in tow!). Illness in her family, “unexplained infertility,” and the responsibility of being a mama have evoked awareness of the ingredients in everyday products & foods, and their impact on human health. Kristen is passionate about making her world a little safer, one clean swap at a time. You can follow her clean swap suggestions @SwapToSafer and shop #betterbeauty products from Beautycounter at www.beautycounter.com/kristenireland


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here