Our Paleo Family

Beautycounter FAQ

When I was contemplating joining the Beautycounter Company as a consultant, what I was really trying to assess was why this company and this job might be a good fit for me. I can tell you honestly that it didn’t take me long to make my decision and this is why:

We love to share information about things that have impacted our lives. It might be where you found those awesome jeans, which pediatrician you feel like really listens to your needs, or what you plan to fix for dinner.

We share because love each other and we want the best for our friends, our family and our community. Maybe we share because we’ve suffered at some point along the way, and we hope that in our sharing, we can help others avoid what we’ve experienced. Most of us want to learn from others and share what we’ve learned along life’s journey. It’s a way of redeeming the hard places and finding unexpected joy.

This is precisely why I’m sharing with you. It’s why I share what I cook for my family – and what they will actually eat. It’s why I share all my failed attempts at Whole30. And the occasional success as well. I’ve shared my experience with insulin resistance, even though that was a little hard to open up about. Through all of this, it’s been my desire that we will all find safer and better ways to live and thrive.

I’m thankful for the friend who dared to share with me about the Paleo diet. How she and her husband chose that route for their child diagnosed with an autoimmune condition rather than have her take the drugs the doctor recommended – the very same drugs she knew I was taking for my autoimmune condition. She had the courage to tell me what she learned about those drugs, what they could do to the body and she looked for another way. She knew she could have offended me, she could have made me mad, by basically telling me that I had been ignorant in blindly following doctor’s orders, but she told me anyway.

That’s why I write this blog. That’s why I’m in school for Functional Medicine Health Coaching. That’s why I am with Beautycounter. I don’t ever want to be the person who knows what might just be the magic bullet to your good health, but I didn’t tell you for one reason or another. I don’t want to be the person holding the key and keeping it hidden in my pocket.

Yes, regarding Beautycounter, we are talking facial moisturizers, shampoo and makeup, but really it is so much more than that.

Beautycounter is on a mission to change this industry.

A few facts for you:

Our skin is our largest organ and the products we use day after day contain ingredients that are absorbed into our bloodstream and circulated throughout our bodies. Which means that we are bathing our internal glands and organs in these chemicals, many of which are known to cause damage over time. With that in mind, think about this: the United States has banned 30 ingredients from personal hygiene products. The European Union has banned 1,400. The last major legislation passed in this regard in the United States was in 1938. 

How does that make you feel? It makes me pretty angry. 

Maybe you currently shop one of those brands at the mall where everything is shiny and the salespeople wear lab coats. Does that give you the sense that what they are selling is somehow healthy for you? Do a quick check of the ingredients in one of those products and see how it matches up with Beatycounter’s Never List.

The Never List™ is made up of more than 1,500 questionable or harmful chemicals that we never use as ingredients in our products. This includes the over 1,400 chemicals banned or restricted in personal care products by the European Union, plus additional chemicals screened by Beautycounter and found to be of concern.

Another option is to look up your favorite products on the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Skin Deep database. They even have an app that allows you to scan barcodes from your phone! But keep this in mind: Many of the larger companies do not allow the Environmental Working Group to test their products or post their results so you are likely to not be able to find many of your favorite products listed there.

My guess is that you will be surprised by what’s in your products. So much of what we are being told to put on our skin, on our mouths and our eyes, is full of chemicals that are KNOWN to be hormone disrupters, cancer causers, and skin irritants.

If you have a few minutes, watch this video that explains more about the beauty industry and how Beautycounter is trying to make big changes!

When I began seeing my Functional Medicine doctor several years ago, I began the process of cleaning up all of my personal care and household cleaning products. I found out about Beautycounter at that time and began slowly purchasing products as I ran out of something or as there was money in the budget. I was mostly using their makeup until just this past fall when something in my mind just clicked.

I had already completely overhauled my diet, my whole family was using aluminum free deodorant and brushing our teeth with fluoride free toothpaste, so why was I still putting less than ideal products on my skin? On my kids’ skin? I was buying “better” products, but not the best products. Just because I was frugal.

While at a Beautycounter social last fall, I decided that it was time to jump all the way in. I could cut costs in other places if I really tried (do I truly need so many shoes?) and invest that money in my health. And from there, it was just a short hop to becoming a Consultant. I researched the company and everything I found I really admired. Yes, it is a multi-level marketing company, meaning the person I am directly under in the company makes some money off of my sales. That’s just the way it works. This structure allows consultants like me to work one-on-one with customers, helping them find the right products for their skin. Is there anyone in the beauty aisle at your favorite drug store helping you understand the science behind the ingredients in your favorite products?

Everything this company does is respectable and above board. They are even a Certified B Corporation which means this:

“B Corp is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk. B Corps are for-profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.” (https://www.bcorporation.net/what-are-b-corps)

Beautycounter products have performed exceedingly well in clinical trials, they have products that have received the coveted Allure Best of Beauty Awards, which is all really nice, but each person needs to figure out what works best for them. I personally love the feel, the scent (or lack thereof) and the performance of Beautycounter products.

If you have specific questions about the company not addressed here, please reach out and I’ll do my best to answer them. For now, I wanted to present a short FAQ section. I know that most of us can’t just willy-nilly decide to spend several hundred dollars on beauty and skin care products. Maybe you want to start with one or two things, maybe you have a specific issue that needs to be addressed. I’ll try to answer those concerns with this FAQ, but again, please comment below or email me directly at elizabeth@ourpaleofamily.com if you have questions or concerns not covered here.

Q: What do you currently use on your skin?

A: I’m currently using the Nourishing Essentials Line for my daily cleansing and moisturizing. This is the line for you if you have no specific concerns about your skin or have sensitive skin. I also recommend this line for pre-teens/teenagers just getting started with a skincare routine. It’s gentle, yet highly effective. I had never used a creamy cleanser before Beautycounter and I’m absolutely loving it. My skin no longer feels dry or tight. 

In addition to the Nourishing Essentials Line, I add the No.1 Brightening (Vitamin C) oil to my nightly moisturizer and the No.2 Plumping Oil to my daytime moisturizer. I have had very large patches of hyper-pigmented skin for years and the Vitamin C oil has really been like magic. My skin is much clearer and brighter overall and I could not be more pleased.

As an added measure of rejuvenating and anti-aging, I use the No. 1 brightening mask once per week and the No. 2 Plumping Mask also once per week. After the No. 2 mask treatment, my skin has such a natural rosy glow, it truly amazes me. I want to go out on a date with zero makeup on, my skin looks so healthy. I don’t mean that in a braggy way. This product just does wonders for my complexion.

I also now use all Beautycounter make up. I prefer a natural look, so these are my favorites:

  • Dew Skin No. 2 – this is basically a tinted moisturizer with SPF built right in
  • Concealer pen in Light as needed
  • Mattifying Powder
  • Powder Blush in Bloom/Tulip
  • Volumizing Mascara
  • Eyeshadow in Fawn/Night: I use an eyeliner brush to apply the night color as my eye liner. Full disclosure, the eyeliner pencils don’t work great for me. But that’s not a knock to Beautycounter as I have a hard time applying any eyeliner pencil. I feel like they’re very unforgiving and I can never get the look exactly how I want it. I enjoy using the eye shadows as eyeliner because I feel like I have better control of how it goes on. I can layer it for more of a smoky eye look or keep it a really thin line for every day. I highly, highly recommend Beautycounter’s eye shadows.
  • In addition to the Fawn/Night eyeshadow, I like the Pearl/Champagne for highlighting and the Shell/Malt, mostly for using the Malt color as a subtle eyeliner.
  • For lips, I like the Lip Sheers in either Twig or Terra for everyday and Raisin for going out or when wearing bold colors. Twig and Terra are very neutral/nude looks, but Terra has a tiny bit more color and a very slight peachy tone.
  • For special occasions, I top my Lip Sheer with Lip Gloss in Dahlia, which is not nearly as bright pink as it appear in the tube.

Q: If I can only afford one or two products right now, what would you recommend?

A: You can go one of two ways with this.

Number 1: Compare your products to Beautycounter’s Never List. Alternatively, look-up your products on EWG’s Skin Deep Database and prioritize based on the worst rated or most toxic product you currently use and start swapping out as things either run out or budget allows. (See my caveat on EWG above)

What if EVERYTHING I use is pretty bad? Then choose something in the skincare line first. See the graphic below about how to choose which skincare line is best for you and if you have concerns not addressed here, just ask me and I’ll help you decide.

You can either purchase the entire set, which does offer some cost savings or buy one or two pieces at a time. If you go that route, I’d recommend a cleanser and a night cream.

Option Number 2: Start with the products you use most often. Maybe that’s sunscreen. Maybe you never leave the house without mascara or a swipe of lipstick. Those three products just happen to be some of the most toxic on the market so would be a great place to start making a clean swap.

Q: How do I know which skin care line is right for my skin?

A: There are nuances, of course, but in general, this chart provides some guidance.

Q: Does your family use Beautycounter products?

A: I can’t get my husband on board yet, but for sure he will be using the Sunscreen come summer time. I’m working on him about taking care of his skin. I think he may be just a teeny bit stubborn.

But my kids are now using the Nourishing Essentials Cleanser for everyday cleansing of their faces and we are spot treating acne with the No. 3 Balancing Charcoal Mask.

The kids also use the Kids line of Shampoo, Conditioner and Body Wash. I love the pumps that come with these because it keeps my daughter from using half the bottle of conditioner every time she showers. She gets one pump of shampoo, two pumps of conditioner and one pump of body wash per shower. Period.

In my opinion, Beautycounter products seem more concentrated than their drugstore or even department store or salon counterparts. I chalk that up to the purity of the ingredients. I find that all of us need less of all of the skin and body care products.

Q: Do you use the Shampoo and Conditioner and if so, which one?

A: Yes, I use the Daily Shampoo and Conditioner. My hair is long, very thick and moderately curly. I used to need a great big palm full of conditioner every time I washed my hair. I use about a quarter of that amount with the Beautycounter products, possibly less, I haven’t actually measured. I just know that I use much less. See my comment above about the more concentrated feel of Beautycounter body products.

Q: What do you recommend for men?

A: Even though my husband won’t use the products (yet), I do have clients who purchase products for their husbands. I’d say the most popular are the Charcoal Cleansing Bar and Sunscreen, either the lotion or the face stick.

Q: Do you use and recommend other beauty products that aren’t Beautycounter?

A: I don’t currently use anything on my skin that is not Beautycounter, but I did. I don’t always like to wear foundation, which meant that if I didn’t wear my DewSkin, I wasn’t getting sunscreen on my face. Before I was able to purchase the Sunscreen lotion from Beautycounter, I would use Alba Botanica Daily Moisturizer with SPF 15 on those days I wasn’t wearing foundation. This is a product I purchased through Thrive Market. The ingredients are pretty pure (paraben free and phthalate free) and it worked well for my skin. I would recommend it as an inexpensive product to keep in your arsenal. Of course, years ago, I used all department store or drug store makeup, but I began switching those out as soon as I learned about Beautycounter.

As I mentioned above, I recommend check the ingredients on any products you’re considering with our Never List. It might require bifocals or a magnifying glass to read the back of those bottles and tubes!

Nowadays, when I don’t want to wear foundation, I just add a little sunscreen to my daily moisturizer. 

Q: What do you use around your house?

A: As far as for cleaning my bathrooms, floors, etc. I use either Branch Basics or Dr. Bronner’s Cleaners. Both are concentrates and can be diluted to different strengths for different purposes.

I like those two cleaners for everything (including hand washing) except for washing dishes, both in the sink and in the dishwasher. I’m still searching for a dish soap that works well, but I do have a recipe for dishwasher soap that is very effective.

Combine:

Use 1 Tablespoon of that mixture per load of dishes and then top with 1 tsp. of citric acid powder. My dishes come out sparkly clean, with no residue.

My favorite toothpaste is Jason Powersmile Fluoride Free.

That’s really about it. Finding a good concentrated cleaner has kept my cleaning supplies limited, which is nice. The fewer things I have to keep up with, the better.

Q: What about deodorant? I see that Beautycounter doesn’t offer one yet.

A: Oh boy! I have tried every “healthy” brand on the market it seems, with modest success. You have to understand first of all, that these are almost always just deodorants, not antiperspirants, so you are going to have to adjust to feeling a bit sweaty. I understand that the body adapts over time, but I still feel wet at times and I don’t like it. But I don’t stink – at least I don’t think so. Before I recommend any brand, I need to say that ALL of them take some time for your body to adjust to. Don’t use it two days and give up because you were stinking up the office. Take your product with you to work and pop into the bathroom in the middle of the day for a quick wash-up and reapplication if necessary. Your body chemistry will adjust – probably. It may take some experimenting to figure out which exact product works best for you. If you read ingredient labels, you’ll see that most use some combination of these ingredients: coconut oil, jojoba oil, arrowroot starch, baking soda and essential oils.

Right now, I’m using Primal Pit Paste in Jasmine and I like it a lot. At the recommendation of some friends, I’ve purchased some Schmidt’s Deodorant in Ylang Ylang and Calendula (that scent is currently unavailable) so I’ll report on that one once I’ve given it a go.

Q: Does Beautycounter offer some sort of Loyalty Program?

A: Yes! It’s called Band of Beauty and is an annual membership. For $29, you receive a gift from Beautycounter, which changes, but right now is the $49 Charcoal Mask. You also receive 15% off every order in future product credit plus free shipping on all orders over $100. The product credit does expire after 60 days, so keep up with it. I don’t know about you, but within 60 days, I always find a way to use my product credit!

Q: I think I’m ready to take the leap and start changing over my beauty and skin care products. How can I work with you?

A: You can email me at elizabeth@ourpaleofamily.com if you have questions you want answered privately. If you have questions you think others might benefit from as well, please leave a comment below. If you’re ready to order, please visit my website here. 

Just a few closing comments: Some of you may be new here and are wondering where I’m coming from…what my journey to health has looked like. I’ve written that all down for you and you can find it here.

If you’re interested in keeping updated with current Beautycounter special offers, you can sign up for my BeautyCounter specific newsletter here.

And last but not least, for as long as supplies last, I have a special gift to offer all my new clients:
For every order of $75 or more, I will send you one of these lovely beaded bracelets made by artisans in Uganda as part of Project Have Hope. 

For every order of $150 or more, I will send you one of these beautiful multi-strand bracelets by these same amazing women.

When you place your order through my website, just send me an email at elizabeth@ourpaleofamily.com letting me know you’ve ordered and I’ll ship your bracelet right to you. It’s as easy as that.