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women making big moves in clean beauty

by Jennie Fresa |

Big change is happening! Here are six women and their stories of how they're changing skincare and putting an end to harmful chemicals. These women are inspired by their own experiences, along with a deep passion for ALL women to life their best + healthiest life. Here's to strong women!

Back in 2008 Indie Lee was faced with an MRI, that left her with 6 months to live. Learning that the rare brain tumor could be environmental, her doctor asked “what do you put on your skin?”

The truth? At the time while Indie was eating organic and growing her own produce for Whole Foods she didn’t know what she was putting on her skin. With surgery in her near future, she knew if she survived the surgery her legacy would be to create change and empower others to live their healthiest life.

Waking up from surgery in April 22, 2009 the surgeon took her hand and said “We were able to get everything. Welcome to the rest of your life.”

Today, Indie Lee is committed to creating change and building community in the clean lifestyle and wellness categories, Indie Lee & Co is grounded in nature, supported through science, and inspired by life.

Sourcing the world’s finest ingredients and formulating with the help of leading, like-minded chemists, Indie Lee intrinsically blends nature and science to bring the most efficacious products to market without sacrificing safety.

Shop our entire Indie Lee collection here. 

Think Dirty is a project born out of a personal journey to understand the truths in the beauty industry.

Due to a family history of cancer, Think Dirty founder, Lily Tse decided to research into the many causes behind breast cancer, including ‘toxic’ ingredients in cosmetic and personal care products.

Think Dirty empowers and educates the consumer on the cosmetic industry by allowing them to make an informed decision on what products to purchase.

In 2012, Think Dirty won the It’s a Start Competition Grand Prize by Digifest Toronto, and in 2013 launched the app with more than 68,300 products listed.

Today the app includes over 3,800 brands, 550k products, and has seen over 8.5 million unique scans.

Download the Think Dirty App here!

Born in Vancouver, Sasha has always been close to nature. Her younger brother and now business partner, Zac, suffered from acute asthma and allergies at a young child. Her mother, a pioneer in health and wellness at the time, sought out homeopathic remedies to help heal her son. This included co-founding an organic food co-op when organic food did not yet exist in the grocery stores. Through trial and error, Zac was healed primarily through diet, and went on to compete in sailing in the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, after doctors had predicted he would never be able to play sports. 

Studying in London and New York, Sasha found herself in Los Angeles in 2006 and spent several years working as a branding executive within the fashion and beauty industries. After moving home to Vancouver her mother encouraged her to read the ingredient list on her favorite lip balm. Sasha was shocked to discover many of the ingredients were not safe and it was something she used daily.

The challenge was set, to re-create her favorite lip balm so that it would be safe, effective and natural. Today Ilia Beauty is one of the leaders in clean beauty, offering beautiful products created with care inside and out, without compromise on performance or luxury. 

Shop our entire Ilia Beauty line here. 

Mary began her career in the global cosmetic business, working for brands like Yves Saint Laurent, Revlon and Elizabeth Arden. While working she found she had a real passion in product development with a leading Canadian pharmaceutical retailer. 

Working long hours and frequently traveling, Mary found herself reaching for traditional makeup wipes because of their convenience, but often found that they irritated her eyes. Looking at the ingredients in her daily beauty routine, including those makeup wipes, was truly an eye-opening discovery (no pun intended). 

Finding the large number of toxic chemicals used every single day, Mary founded Kaia Naturals, a company devoted to taking toxins out of your beauty routine, one product at a time. 

Shop our entire Kaia Naturals line here.

A pioneer in natural luxury skincare, Tata couldn't find 100% natural products that were up to her impeccable standards of efficacy, quality, and purity.

The idea for the line began when her stepfather was diagnosed with skin cancer in 2005, and his doctors continuously urged them to read all the product labels for things used at home for toxic additives. 

So she started Tata Harper Skincare to make them - for herself, and for women like her who refuse to risk their health for beauty. If she doesn’t feel that a product is perfect, it's not launched.

In the past year, Tata Harper's company has grown 600% and is available in major retailers like Neiman Marcus, Sephora, and at our flagship store in Madison, CT.

Rose-Marie Swift has been a make-up artist for over 35 years, her work has been featured in Vogue, W, Harper's Bazaar, I.D., Self Service, V, Allure, Marie Claire, Glamour, Interview, and Elle - just to name a few. Along with ads for Dianne Von Furstenburg, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade, Tommy Hilfiger, Max Mara, The Gap, Victoria's Secret and more. To say the least, her resume is staked. 

Several years ago, Rose-Marie began to experience health issues that were causing many problems both physically, mentally, and emotionally. After extensive tests, she learned that her blood contained toxic levels of heavy metals including aluminum, barium, cadmium, lead and mercury as well as high levels of pesticides and other chemicals. 

Rose-Marie was surprised when the technician asked if she worked in the cosmetics industry. Until then she had no idea that cosmetics could contribute to serious health issues. 

After years of rebuilding her own health, Rose-Marie realized that she wanted to help other women, claim their right to healthy beauty. To achieve this goal she created RMS Beauty, her acclaimed line of organic color cosmetics. 

In addition to her beauty line, Rose-Marie created the website to dispel beauty myths and expose some of the dangers of personal care products. 

Shop our entire RMS Beauty line here. 

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