Natural Beauty

Holiday Makeup & Nails

While you’re decking the halls, why not dazzle friends and family with a touch of personal glam?

If the only reason you’ve put on makeup or polished your nails lately is for a Zoom meeting, the holidays are the perfect time to go glam. It’s easier than ever to find bright and festive holiday makeup and polishes that keep your health and sustainability in mind.

Natural makeup has come a long way in the past five years. While it was once difficult to find natural makeup made with certified organic ingredients and vibrant plant pigments with staying power, clean cosmetics companies are now bursting with innovative products that have left conventional beauty companies scrambling to keep up. Here’s a look at the most exciting trends:

Glitter: This is a staple in any holiday beauty look—but have you ever stopped to think about what happens to the glittery lipstick, eye shadow, or highlighter when you wash it off? Scientists have recently called for an outright global ban of plastic glitter because of its impact on the oceans and water supply. However, ethically sourced mica looks just like glitter, but with irregular and smaller flecks, so you can continue to have fun with exciting colors and glittery textures from a mineral that exists in nature.

Beeswax-based mascaras and lipsticks: These are naturally moisturizing, while mass-market varieties rely on paraffin wax to make them creamy and use plastic polymers rather than vegetable extracts to help them adhere. Organic minerals add gloss and shimmer to natural lipsticks, and the non-petrochemical-based waxes and oils add nutrients. The result is lipstick that performs like a healing lip balm.

Mineral makeup: This is made of microscopic flat crystals that overlap each other on skin, creating a filtering layer that allows the skin to breathe while also shielding it from environmental pollutants. So it protects in addition to creating a flawless look. The minerals titanium dioxide and zinc oxide also provide broad-spectrum sun defense.

Related: All Natural Makeup

Natural eye shadows, blushes, bronzers, and highlighters made with oils and beeswax: These creamy formulas are ideal for dry skin, and most skin types can benefit from a moisturizing cream rather than a powder in the colder winter months. If your skin is oily, stick with powder, or top off creamy formulas with powder to help set your makeup.

Nail polish: And what would holiday glam be without shiny, colorful nails? Just beware of popular polishes that can be harmful to both your nails and your health. Harsh chemicals such as toluene, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), formaldehyde, and parabens can actually get inside your body through the nail bed and cause damage to your health over time. Fortunately, there are a growing number of nail polish brands made without toxic ingredients, and their performance and color selection are just as good as their more toxic competition. Happy, dazzling holidays!

  1. Smile with your eyes with Juice Beauty Phyto-Pigments Ultra-Natural Mascara, formulated with rich dark colors from organic purple carrot and argan oil, rather than petroleum byproducts or carbon black. Vitamin E helps condition lashes and protects the hair follicle against breakage. Tapioca adds volume, while organic aloe hydrates and separates. The result is feathery lashes that are nourished with every flutter.
  2. Reveal shining lips when you take your mask off, with Mineral Fusion Sheer Moisture Lip Tint (shown here in Flicker). Cocoa butter, jojoba oil, and beeswax hydrate, while peptides firm lips. Choose from eight shades that are hypoallergenic, vegetarian, gluten-free, and free of artificial fragrances.
  3. Get glowing with Pacifica Twinkle Paint Liquid Shadow. The sheer formula is infused with grapefruit and relies on mica, silica, and other minerals for color. Choose from three shades that can be layered for a bolder look: Pink Moon, Cloudy Mood, and Baby Stars. Apply to your lids, cheeks, or anywhere you may want a little sparkle.
  4. Look luminous in the moonlight or even ambient light with Jane Iredale Illuminating Lights Face Palette, inspired by the glowing night sky. The palette includes two shimmery blushes, a bronzer, 2 glowing highlighters, and a soft pearl finish powder that will brighten your spirit as well as your look.
  5. Add shimmer and shine to your nails with Zoya’s “Intriguing” Holiday Nail Polish Collection. The breathable formula is free of all 10 toxic ingredients found in conventional nail polish. Choose from 12 winter-themed colors, including Metallic Green, Shimmering Wintery Blue, Poinsettia Red Cream, and Glistening Champagne Pearl.