Alicia Silverstone’s Journey to Wellness, Plus Her Tips for Choosing Clean Products
Whether you’re talking about the ingredients in your beauty products or the ingredients in your supplements, actress turned activist Alicia Silverstone says they matter. But it’s more than just what’s in your products, she says. It’s the process that ingredients go through before they get to formulation, and how they’re combined that’s important too.
At the Wanderlust Wellspring weekend in Palm Springs in October 2018, Alicia shared her personal story to wellness. “When I was younger,” she says, “when you talked to me about ‘health,’ I thought you were saying I was fat.” What changed that perception was her love of animals. “I loved my dog, and how was that different than loving other animals?” she says. “I wouldn’t eat my dog, so why would I eat other animals?”
Alicia became a vegan at age 21, and she said it did more than introduce her to the world of wellness. “It was so empowering, and helped me speak my truth,” she says. It helped that once she cleaned up her diet, she noticed that she could ditch her asthma inhaler, her skin cleared up, her nails were stronger and she stopped having to see her doctor so regularly. “I found that I had more control of my health,” she says.
Why Ingredients Matter to Alicia Silverstone
Alicia’s switch to veganism inspired her to take a look at the ingredients she was using in all her products. “I can see the effects of clean eating [on how I feel] from one meal to the next, so why wouldn’t I look at ingredients in everything else?” she says.
To start, ingredients in food matter because, she says, “clean eating is at the core of our environmental, social, physical and mental issues.” The quality of our food impacts our health, she continues, and that includes where those ingredients come from, how they’re farmed and how they’re processed (or not processed).
Take the vitamin and supplement industry, which she notes isn’t nearly regulated enough and can leave consumers in the dark about what’s best for them. “Most extraction processes for vitamins uses gasoline,” she says, “which you don’t want on your food. So it’s about getting the organic, pesticide-free ingredients, but it’s also about how they’re processed once they’re sourced.”
It’s similar with beauty and personal care products, Alicia says. “What goes on our skin impacts what happens in our bodies, so we have to be aware and avoid ingredients that have been linked to cancer and birth defects and other health issues.”
Alicia’s Tips For Choosing Clean Products
When we’re talking about supplements and vitamins, Alicia says, “strive to get all your nutrients from food. But if that’s not possible or you need other support, then high quality supplements can help your body get a boost.”
Consumers should look for certifications on labels, because that means a third-party has put its stamp of approval on that product. “You want a product to be clean, from the farmers to the extraction, to the process,” she says. She mentions her vitamin collaboration, mykind Organics, with Garden of Life, saying that each formula is like “food in a bottle, dehydrated soup, basically.”
mykind Organics are USDA Certified Organic, Certified Vegan and Gluten Free, Non-GMO and the company is a Certified B Corporation. “All of those certifications are deliberate,” Alicia says, “because they each represent something different and they tell the consumer that we’re committed to clean ingredients and safety.” She recommends using these certifications as guidelines for choosing vitamins and supplements, no matter the brand.
When it comes to beauty products, Alicia says she leans on certifications and online databases for help. “Personally, all the products I use and review on thekindlife.com are not tested on animals, contain no animal products, are 100 percent natural and are ideally organic,” she says. She notes that she frequents the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database to find out how products and ingredients are rated for toxicity. She also uses the Leaping Bunny Approved Brands list as a regular resource.
“Reading ingredients is important,” says Alicia. “You have to do it at an individual level.” Her tip to keep it from becoming overwhelming? “Pick your priorities,” she says. “It narrows it down when you know what ingredients are important to you to avoid.”
And, whether or not you care about ingredients, “you deserve safe, clean cosmetics, clothes, supplements, food and more,” she says. That’s a mantra we can get on board with too.
Interested in what ingredients are important to avoid? Check out our list of 13 ingredients to get out of your makeup and skincare, stat.