Eco CG is the method for curlies who want beautiful and healthy curls, but also care about the environment. Did you know that many cosmetics contain microbeads? And just think of all the plastic packaging you use every year. Especially with a co-wash this can go quickly, because you use a lot of it at a time. Fortunately, there are alternatives! In this article we’ll explain what the Eco CG Method is and which hair products are Eco CG friendly.
What is Eco CG?
The Eco CG Method is a variant of the Curly Girl Method. This is a hair routine to take care of curls as naturally as possible. The method is based on a few basic principles: cut out harmful ingredients (such as sulfates, silicones and parabens) and products (such as blow dryers and brushes), learn your curl and hair type, and embrace new habits such as drying your curls with a cotton T-shirt instead of a towel.
The Eco CG Method goes one step further: all hair products that are used are also organic. Because a lot of CG products still contain synthetic ingredients that can be harmful to your scalp and health. For example, you can experience scalp problems such as itching, flakes, eczema and allergic reactions. It hasn’t been proven that Eco CG products are better for you, but the chance is there. So always take a good look at what works for your hair and what doesn’t. You can keep track of this in your Curl Diary, for example.
What is certain, is that Eco CG is better for the environment. The products are produced more sustainable, more recyclable and biodegradable. They contain more natural ingredients and have less impact on the environment and that’s also very important!
Eco CG ingredients
Therefore, the Eco CG Method is even more critical of the ingredients in hair products. For example, a distinction is made between different types of sulfates. Sulfates help create a frothy, foamy lather that removes dirt, oil and grease. SLS and SLES are made from petroleum and have small molecules that penetrate deep into the hair and scalp, where they can cause damage. SCS, on the other hand, is a natural sulfate. This is made of coconut and contains a large molecule, so it only cleans on the surface and therefore doesn’t damage skin and hair.
Unlike the Curly Girl Method, where it’s preferred not to wash your hair too often, the Eco CG Method recommends cleaning your hair and scalp regularly. Otherwise you will suffer from build-up, which can lead to hair loss, they say. But do this with a cleanser that contains SCS.
How to tell if a product is eco-friendly
There are a few quality marks that show that a product is organic. The criteria differ from each other, but most quality marks require that:
- 95% of the ingredients are of biological origin
- The packaging is recyclable
- No unnecessary use of materials
- No microbeads
- No palm fat, or a sustainable one
- No animal testing
One of the best ways to judge the eco-friendliness of a company, is to see how it’s been judged by reputable third-party organizations. Check the label of the product itself or the website of the brand for green certifications, like:
- Energy Star, for energy efficiency
- USDA Organic Seal, for organic products
- Forest Stewardship Council, for products made from trees in responsibly managed forests
- Green Seal, for general sustainability
If you see one of these certifications on cosmetics, you know that the product is eco-friendly and you can therefore use it if you follow the Eco CG Method!
Eco CG products
But what are Eco CG products? You can make your own products, but there are also plenty of brands that sell Eco CG products. Other options include using refill packaging or zero-waste products.
DIY Eco CG products
Examples of Eco CG products you can DIY are:
- Apple cider cleanse: this removes build-up from your hair, keeping your scalp and hair clean and healthy. In addition, it nourishes your hair with nutrients – if you use organic apple cider vinegar. You can find the recipe for the apple cider cleanse here.
- Rice water: is a protein treatment that makes your hair stronger, softer and grow faster. You can find the recipe for rice water here.
- Deep conditioner: this is quite easy to make yourself with ingredients like jojoba oil, coconut oil and other oils. Let the deep co sit for about 20 minutes, your hair wrapped in a warm towel for an extra effect.
- Flaxseed gel: 100% natural and cheap to make yourself.
Zero waste products
Examples of zero waste products are shampoo and conditioner bars. They’re a great planet friendly option, as they’re in a solid form. Because all superfluous things like water and preservatives have been removed, it’s not only better for your hair but also a lot more compact. And they don’t need packaging, so you don’t produce waste using them. With one shampoo bar you already save up to three plastic bottles per year!
Eco CG brands
These are some of our favorite Eco CG brands:
All ingredients in Ecoslay hair products are natural and consciously chosen, ingredients that you cannot even pronounce are avoided. “Slay your hair, not the planet” is their motto. All Ecoslay products are vegan, free from silicones, sulfates, parabens, CG-approved and suitable for all curl types. Their products do come in plastic, but they have made a few great sustainability commitments. They have significantly reduced their plastic packaging, are using green shipping materials, and recycling any empties customers send back to them.
Jessicurl is a brand developed by Jess McGuinty. She first started looking for the right hair products when she was fourteen, but she couldn’t find them. That’s why she decided to make them herself. The result? High-quality products, suitable for different curl types, vegan and not tested on animals, and free from aggressive cleaning agents.
Bouclème products have been specially developed for curly hair and are CG-approved. The brand’s goal is to give you healthy, frizz-free curls by using natural and vegan ingredients without sulfates, silicones or parabens. They don’t contain any chemicals, even the preservative used is eco-certified. Fair trade products are used wherever possible. And the products are only tested on curls, not on animals. Bouclème’s packaging is also sustainable: it’s made from biodegradable sugarcane “plastic”.
Other Eco CG brands include:
- Josh Rosebrook
- Marie Bio
- Tabitha James Kraan
So, now you know everything about the Eco CG Method! Do you still have questions? Feel free to ask them in the comment section!