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Beauty

11 Clean Beauty Brands From +65 You Should Know

These are the brands Singapore clean beauty fiends are crazy about.

For all its popularity in the beauty industry, the tricky thing about clean beauty is that it isn’t a regulated term and so there’s no set definition or requirement for it. What this technically means is that every brand can have their own interpretation of ingredients and practices, for some it may mean that their products are organic, for others it may mean that their products are vegan, and for some, it may mean that they don’t use a list of ingredients. The most telling (and helpful) way to figure out if a product is ‘clean’ is to go beyond the claims and look into the ingredients.

What is the difference between clean beauty, vegan beauty, and natural beauty?

Clean beauty has somehow morphed into a blanket phrase that many interchangeably use with natural beauty or vegan beauty, and it’s important to know there’s a fine line between the three.

Vegan beauty refers to products that are formulated without any animal by-products or ingredients that are sourced from animals. This is harder than we’d think as it includes beeswax, honey, lanolin, and tallow – all of which are commonly found in beauty products. However, just because a product is vegan doesn’t mean it’s clean as it can still contain concerning chemical ingredients. Just like how if a product is clean it doesn’t mean it’s vegan.

Read More: 10 Vegan Makeup Products For A Guilt-Free Beauty Routine

Natural beauty often refers to the integrity and purity of the ingredients, usually, this means they’re looking for products that use nature-derived ingredients.

Clean beauty typically refers to products that are formulated without a certain group of ingredients that are toxic or problematic. Those of which can include parabens, silicones, drying alcohols, sulfates (SLS and SLES), fragrances, and dyes. For all its popularity, clean beauty is still a niche category and yet it’s one that Singaporeans are interested in.

There aren’t many brands that can avoid the whole conglomerate of them, but for the most part, many primarily focus on parabens, phthalates, sulfates, and petrochemicals. These ingredients are commonly avoided because they can lower the risk of irritation and sensitivity. It’s important to note that clean doesn’t mean natural, natural doesn’t always mean better and there are synthetic ingredients that are safe as well.

To keep things simple, we’ve narrowed down a list of local clean beauty skincare brands that you can upgrade your routine with: from serums, cleansers, and even a lip balm. But if you’re new to this and rather dip your toes in for starters, consider prioritising the products that spend the most time on your skin like moisturisers or sunscreens.

This article first appeared in Women’s Weekly Singapore.

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KEW ORGANICS
The founder, Lily Kew, created Kew Organics by formulating her own water-based organic skincare line and facials after being troubled by acne and scars throughout her adolescence. The results-driven and organic skincare brand creates most of their products from Canada and Japan, and apart from skincare products Kew Organics also offers a comprehensive and targeted menu of organic face and body treatments with cutting-edge technology to achieve clear and healthy skin.   Try: Megaboost Hyaluronic+ Concentrate Serum, $83.70 (30 ml) Suitable for all skin types, the Megaboost Hyaluronic+ Concentrate Serum is Kew Organic’s best-selling product. Formulated with Indian gooseberry, asafoetida, vitamin C, B5, and E, the medley of these ingredients makes an ultimate hydration booster. It helps minimise the appearance of wrinkles and even protects the skin against environmental aggression. PSA Skin
PSA stands for Purposeful Skincare By Allies, and it is a brand developed by the same founder behind Allies Of Skin, another well-loved local skincare brand. PSA is a cruelty-free and PETA-certified skincare line that develops clean and effective products that use clinically proven actives in optimal concentrations. Perfect for those who are just starting on their skincare journey.   Plus, all bottles are fully recyclable and the packaging materials are also 100 per cent oxo-biodegradable. If that weren’t enough, their boxes and shippers are also printed with 100 per cent recycled paper and soy-based ink.   Try: PSA Midnight Courage, $38 (15 ml) This oil works overtime at night to repair and renew the skin with its advanced Retinoid and supercharged botanical extracts of rosehip and bakuchiol. The two work together to help reduce dark spots, fine lines, while balancing uneven tones and textures. MELLOW NATURALS
Combining traditional skincare remedies with modern science, Mellow Naturals’ sources ingredients primarily from Thailand and all around Asia that are ideal for sensitive skin. Pat Benjasiri, the founder, has always been passionate about skincare from her pampering and masking rituals with her mum. Growing up, her mum encouraged the use of local ingredients as skin remedies and this philosophy served as her foundation for healthy skin. Though it hails from Thailand, it is stocked exclusively at SocietyA Beauty in Singapore – a local e-commerce platform that features Asian brands.   Try: Clarifying Face Serum with Sophora Root, $59 (20 ml), SOCIETY A Beauty This serum uses Capryloyl Salicylic Acid (an LHA) to help unclog pores, reduce acne inflammation, and encourage a more flawless complexion. Infused with Sophora Root extract, this Chinese herb has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that help provide relief to acne-prone skin.   It is free of phenoxyethanol, sulfates, mineral oil, silicone, phtalates, parabens, alcohol, PEGs, and fragrances. Keep in mind that there is a 24 month shelf life and 12 months shelf life after you open it. IREN SKIN
Having spent 10 years in the beauty industries of Asia and Europe, Kristin, the founder of IREN has accumulated a wealth of expertise on the way skin evolves through changes in age, stress, hormones, environment, and lifestyles. After studying the correlation between ingredients and unique skin problems, Kristin simplified them with personal scientific lexicons. This J-beauty skincare brand has its products formulated in Singapore and made in Japan. They’re also readily available in Singapore and every product is formulated to be cruelty-free, vegan, and free of SLS/SLES, parabens, mineral oils, silicones, synthetic colours, drying alcohols, and artificial fragrances.   Try: IREN Skin Glow-Getter Renewal Serum, $58 (10 ml) Suitable for congested and oily skin or those with clogged pores, this serum is a gentle and powerful blend of exfoliants, enzymes, and probiotics that help kick-start the skin renewal mechanism to smoothen the texture and restore dull skin to an ultimate glow. Infused with Pumpkin extract, Oat Kernal, and Provitamin B5, this serum helps to repair the skin. TWO HALVES
Two Halves is a beauty brand founded by Ashley and her mother, Jo Yong who has more than 30 years of experience in the beauty industry. The two provide multigenerational insights into modern standards, expectations, and performance of beauty and skincare products. Using unadulterated ingredients that are 100 per cent vegan and beneficial for the skin, Two Halves is committed to using safe and effective formulas.   Try: Better Balance Soothing Hydration Essence, $85 (50 ml) This lightweight gel glides easily on the skin and calms the skin with a potent blend of botanical extracts that are packed with anti-inflammatory, anti-photoageing, and antioxidant properties. Ideal for sensitive skin, the ingredients help reduce collagen degradation and delay skin ageing. The licorice root extract also acts as a skin-conditioning agent that helps smooth out the skin’s texture and restore suppleness. It is also formulated without animal-derived ingredients, sulfates, parabens, PEGs, mineral oils, and fragrances. SIGI SKIN
One of Singapore’s youngest beauty entrepreneurs at 25, Xenia was inspired to create Sigi Skin from her obsession with high-quality skincare ingredients, clean formulations, and healthy skin. Since its launch in late 2018, Sigi Skin has grown in its international (and local) following, one of which includes Meghan Markel’s celebrity makeup artist Daniel Martin. Sigi Skin stands on the pillar that skincare should be effective and simple. Their creams, cleansers, and sunscreens are created without parabens, sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS), butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), DMDM Hydantoin, phthalates, mineral oil, retinyl palmitate, oxybenzone, coal tar, hydroquinone, triclosan, triclocarben and polyunsaturated oils (PUFA).   Try: Morning Glow Physical Sunscreen, $58 (50 ml) This hydrating vegan sunscreen protects the skin from UVA and UVB rays and environmental aggravations. Its light and whipped texture blend easily into the skin without a white residue or greasy film – perfect for Singapore’s heat and humidity. Enhanced with avocado and acai extracts that are rich in vitamin E, this sunscreen helps to keep the skin youthful and supple. It also has four per cent niacinamide that helps moisturise, brighten, and strengthen the skin. LUXE BOTANICS
Founded by Jené Roestorf, a South African biological scientist and global ingredient hunter, LUXE Botanics is an organic and vegan skincare line with a range of high-performance products that are innovated by nature. After a decade of working on international clinical trials, Jené uncovered the potentials of botanical oils and explored the outer reaches of green chemistry. Using Global Botanical oils whose molecular structure mimics, balances, and protects our skin, LUXE Botanics uses only the highest grade and wild-harvested oils that are sourced through fair-trade alliances to support local communities.   Try: Kigelia Corrective Serum, $110 (30 ml) Ideal for oily, combination, or sensitive skin, this concentrated liquid is formulated with Kigelia fruit extract, a gentle and potent skin purifying botanical that supports cell regeneration. It’s also enriched with vitamin C, niacinamide, and sodium hyaluronate, a trio that calms and soothes distressed or acne-prone skin. WANT SKINCARE
An ethical brand based in Singapore, WANT products are formulated from pure botanical oils and minerals. Ingredients are sustainably-sourced, fair trade, free from chemicals, synthetic ingredients, and water to formulate a 100 per cent natural product. The cruelty-free brand believes that beauty goes beyond appearance and as a part of their commitment to align themselves with that ethos, every purchase also contributes to local communities and women in cooperatives in Indonesia and Africa.   Try: Beet This Honey Cleanser, $30 (100 ml) This sweet-smelling and non-foaming cleanser easily removes grime and makeup with its formula of more than 60 per cent certified organic raw honey. It cleanses the skin thoroughly while maintaining its natural moisture balance and as a bonus – helps to brighten, soothe, and soften. Just warm up three to four pumps of the cleanser in the palm of your hands before massaging it over your face for a full cleanse. ROOKI
Rooki is a high-performance superfood beauty company that believes what we put on your skin should be just as important as what we eat. They believe that skincare should be for everyone, even for those with sensitive skin, and it’s why they continue to try to innovate and push the boundaries of cosmetic science. With formulas inspired by superfoods and enhanced by science, the effective and luxurious products blend the best of nature and science. The products are 100 per cent cruelty-free, and formulated without artificial fragrances.   Try: Superfood Saviour Crème, $79 (50 g) Their most nourishing formula yet, the Superfood Saviour Creme retains hydration in the skin for up to 24 hours. It is a heroic three-in-one bioflavonoid moisturiser that’s infused with antioxidant-rich kale, lingon berries, and protein-packed chia seeds. The potent and luxurious cell-generating moisturiser also contains no mineral oil or silicones. Simply smooth it into the skin in circular motions. THE GENTLE LABEL
Genevieve Tan started The Gentle Label as a means to create products that were safe for her family, this range features safe and non-toxic beauty essentials that can be used on the daily. True to its brand philosophy, The Gentle Label champions the simplification of ingredients and routines that are designed for everyone (no matter their gender, age, or skin types). Every product is formulated with a high percentage of organic ingredients and uses no unnecessary fillers or harmful synthetic ingredients.   Try: Organic Healing Balm, $22 (25 ml) Enhanced with pawpaw and calendula, this Healing Balm is gentle enough for the entire family and can be applied anywhere on the face (even the lids and lips). 100 per cent natural and organic, this Healing Balm moisturises, calms, soothes, and even helps to heal minor burns, cuts, bring relief to insect bites and irritations, and soothe chapped lips or cracked skin. The pawpaw derived from papaya gently removes dead skin cells while the calendula brings anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties. BEIGIC
BEIGIC is a clean beauty brand from South Korea that’s now available in Singapore. Formulated with green coffee bean extracts in its purest form and other proven active ingredients for healthy, radiant skin, each BEIGIC product features five positives and avoids five negatives: synthetic dyes, synthetic fragrances, silicones, harsh sulfates (SLS, SLES), and parabens. It’s also vegan, cruelty-free, and safe for all skin types – even sensitive skin.   Try: BEIGIC Correcting Exfoliator, $65 (70 ml), Society A Beauty Enriched with freshly roasted coffee bean powder that’s organic and fair trade, this 100 per cent vegan exfoliator gently scrubs off dead skin cells and removes impurities while softening the skin. It helps to refine texture, deep cleanse, and works to reduce signs of cellulite and marks. It also helps add a glowing finish as it encourages the skin’s natural renewal. The caffeine properties help boost the skin’s metabolism, while the green coffee bean oil and coconut oil keep it moisturised and nourished.