How to Read Your Makeup and Beauty Labels- and What to expect

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It’s always a good time when you can ki ki it up with your girl and talk non stop about beauty products.  Your resident Queen Curvy Marie Denee and I get into some really good beauty conversations. We talk about everything from keeping our big hair plumped to “ooooh, Girl did you see that new teal liner. cuuute!” Recently, we spoke briefly about product ingredients and let me tell you, NOTHING gets my inner geek as hyped as talking product ingredients!

How to read beauty and makeup labels- The Curvy Fashionista

I believe it’s important to know what your using so you can make an educated decision on what best suites your beauty needs. There is a phrase in business “Facts tell, stories sell.”  And I believe that most of our failure during the trial and error phase of product use comes from the fact that we buy based on the second part of that phrase.  Think about it, when you see a commercial and/or pictorial ad, you’ re prompted to buy based upon the “story” not the fact. The “facts” can be a little intimidating and you are not alone.  

All of those long words on a bottle can give you a headache. I mean come on, when you see  butyrospermum parkii on the ingredient list, you’re like “What that heck is that? Why can’t they just say shea butter?”  The whole buying experience can be bothersome. You shouldn’t  feel like you need to take a quick chemistry class just to understand what’s what. Right?! I ah-gree!

Beauty Chemistry and reading labels- The Curvy Fashionista


Well, since I have a passion for this, Marie has asked me to com on board and help break things down… So, as your new resident Beauty Expert and Editor, let me help you with a quick and simple way to help you decode products.

How to read your Makeup and Beauty Labels:

  • By law ingredients have to be listed on products in descending order of percentage (concentration by weight).
  • The first ingredient (the most concentrated ingredient in the product) is usually the base (foundation of the product) ex: water (most common), aloe, oils, etc.
  • The next group of listed ingredients are usually what gives the product it’s texture:
    • – ide or ate: thickens water
    • – pol or mer : solidifies
    • – one: provides smoothness + slip
    • – ane: mixed with silicone’s for thickness
  • Up next are the active ingredients. (Remember, the lower they are on the list the lower they are in strength)
  • And last on the list are usually  color, fragrances, and/or other ingredients


    So there you go! A quick cheat sheet to help put it all into perspective.

    Do you pay attention to the ingredients? Do you find yourself stuck too? What is the craziest ingredient you found and let’s see if we can break it down!

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    Written by JNicole

    A woman of many talents, but my strength is managing & organizing! I live to organize and plan! Follow me on social to see what I’m getting my hands into this week!

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