COMING CLEAN WITH CAZOSHAY MARIE
Coming Clean is a monthly series where we interview people about their relationship with clean beauty—the good, bad, and ugly. We hope these interviews will serve as a platform for raw and vulnerable discussion, but if you only take away one thing, it should be this: There is no right or wrong way. There is only your way.
Cazoshay is a minister, artist, speaker, yoga and meditation instructor, chef, and clean beauty enthusiast. Check out our interview with her as part of CLOVE + HALLOW's monthly Coming Clean series.
WHAT PROMPTED YOU TO MAKE THE SWITCH TO USING CLEANER BEAUTY PRODUCTS?
I had the privilege of growing up with an herbalist for a mother, so cleaner products were what I always used until I became a teenager and got caught up in using more conventional brands. But when I became pregnant with my son 13 years ago, I knew I wanted to be more mindful about the chemicals I would be exposing him and my body to. I have reactions to most products that contain those not-so-good-for-you chemicals, so it was high time to make the switch again—especially since many of the chemicals in conventional products have been linked to things like cancer and hormonal issues, among other things.
"CLEANER PRODUCTS WERE WHAT I ALWAYS USED UNTIL I BECAME A TEENAGER AND GOT CAUGHT UP IN USING MORE CONVENTIONAL BRANDS."
WHICH BEAUTY PRODUCT DID YOU SWAP FIRST?
Since I was already using my mother's products from her business (Needful Things Natural Home and Body Care) on my skin and hair, I started to look at my makeup. The first thing I swapped was lip products. That was hard because I had so many at the time! I threw out all of my chemical-laden products and slowly started replenishing my arsenal of colors with cleaner swaps. I don't wear makeup all the time now, but I had old-fashioned southern grandmothers. My Granny told me that a lady never leaves the house without her eyebrows done and lipstick on, so I do usually at least rock a good non-toxic lippie.
WAS BEAUTY THE FIRST THING YOU SWITCHED WHEN MOVING TO A CLEANER LIFESTYLE?
Beauty was the last thing I switched, actually! I had a severe, advanced double sinus infection that spread to my brain when I was ten that was related to chronic issues with allergies, and I was prescribed a long list of medications. After using what was needed to save my life from the infection, my mother knew there had to be a better way. She threw out all the chemicals in our home (cleaners, soaps, detergent, etc.) and we went back to our former natural, cleaner way of life. (Luckily my dad was on board, too!) It wasn't until I was older and I started wearing makeup and getting my own skincare products that the chemicals slowly started making an appearance in my life again, so those were the last things to go.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR CLEAN BEAUTY STAPLES?
Ilia's Limitless Lash Mascara, Rituel de Fille's Inner Glow Creme Pigment in Envious, the Zuzu Luxe Eyebrow Pencil in Jet, RMS Lip2Cheek in Diabolique and of course CLOVE + HALLOW's Lip Velvet in Fiesta. I love its amazing color payoff and I get so many compliments when I wear it. It’s clean but doesn’t sacrifice performance—doesn’t get any better than that!
WHAT DOES YOUR SKINCARE ROUTINE LOOK LIKE?
I have very sensitive skin that's prone to oiliness in some areas. In the morning I use the Osea Malibu Ocean Cleanser followed by Andalou Naturals' Turmeric+C Enlighten Serum and then carrot oil, which has a natural SPF of 38 to 40. At night I use Indie Lee's Brightening Cleanser followed by the same morning serum, and then moisturize with jojoba oil. If I have oiliness during the day, I'll use the Desert Essence Tea Tree Facial Cleansing Pads. I try to treat myself with a face mask once a week—generally I make them myself using a combination of herbs, foods, oils and/or aloe vera gel according to whatever my skin may be needing at the time.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED TO SEE IN THE FUTURE FROM CLEAN BEAUTY?
I'm excited to see more high-performance cosmetics, such as products that are long-wear but still clean (like CLOVE + HALLOW's Lip Velvets!) as well as a greater spectrum of colors. I love that more clean brands are making shades for a more diverse range of skin tones.
"I TRY TO TREAT MYSELF WITH A FACE MASK ONCE A WEEK—GENERALLY I MAKE THEM MYSELF."
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE WANTING TO TRANSITION TO CLEANER BEAUTY PRODUCTS?
Don't get overwhelmed by the long list of chemicals to avoid. You should definitely do the research to educate yourself, but don't be afraid to start in one area and transition in a way that will be sustainable for you in the long run. And don't give up if something you try doesn't work out for you! There are so many options for cleaner beauty products now, you can totally have fun in the process of finding things that you love and will keep using.