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If you have been living under a rock or are a character on Lost then you are forgiven for not knowing about PeachyClean. The Australian online store stocks only the most luxurious, nourishing and effective organic and cruelty free skincare and cosmetic brands such as Butter London, Sodashi and AEOS. Meet Haley, the woman behind the best organic beauty boutique.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and who you are?
I’ve been working as a Television Presenter, Radio Announcer, Columnist and Emcee since I was 18 and in that time I’ve had every brand of make-up, every lotion and potion slathered on my face (2-3 inches thick sometimes ha!) that you can imagine. When I first found out about some of the chemicals in ‘regular’ skin care and make-up I honestly couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe that these products were legally able to be sold to the public and that animals were still being tested on to make them – um, wasn’t that something that happened in the 70’s?? I was shocked, not only was this just morally wrong to be unknowingly buying products tested on animals and that included ingredients PROVEN to cause cancer and all sorts of other horrendous things like infertility and birth defects but it was also the cause of my bad skin! I thought ‘hang on a second – what the hell? this is all kinds of wrong!”

So after all my research and finally knowing what ingredients and certifications to look for I thought it would be easy to get my everyday products. Wrongo! Not only are companies out-right lying about the ingredients they use (just because something says ‘organic’ on the label doesn’t mean it is-it could contain as little as one organic ingredient mixed with a potent cocktail of chemicals!) but even when the product was good – I couldn’t bloody find it anywhere! It was a half hour drive to get my toothpaste! Good products should be easy to find and easy to get. That’s why I started Peachy Clean. So that there’s finally a place where you don’t have to spend hours deciphering ingredients to choose your bodywash. Everything is 100% safe, absolutely ALWAYS cruelty free and easy to get – click a button and it will be delivered to you overnight so you can get on with doing other things!

What prompted you to choose a cruelty-free lifestyle?
For me it’s not a choice. How could you possibly use a product that has been tested on animals? I just don’t see the logic, need or rationale behind testing on animals – it makes zero sense. If you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin – simple.

What have been the results on your skin, body and mind?
Switching to organic products has seen the biggest improvement in my skin over any other change I’ve made. I remember years ago just being so fed up with dry skin that I went to a high end store and just said ‘I don’t care what’s in it, make the dry skin go away!’ – yep, hundreds of dollars later I was in exactly the same predicament with my skin except now my wallet was lighter too! It wasn’t until I learned about the chemicals and toxic ingredients in these types of ‘regular’ skin care and made the switch to organic that my skin righted itself. I have the best skin of my life and it’s because I’ve eliminated the toxic chemicals. Once you have a safe place to shop – it’s easy to make the change.

Describe your skincare and makeup routines?
Debaucherous! ha ha! My cupboards are ridiculous and I love it! I have a rule that we don’t sell anything at Peachy Clean that I don’t love. I use the lot- mists, eye creams, masks – everything! I’ve seen lines disappear from using great products (you know that furrow one you get between your eyebrows-that was a really noticeable on me and hand on my heart it’s just not there anymore!). I swear by serums. They’re so under-rated. If you add a great serum into your routine you’ll notice a difference! I won’t be without my Sodashi Rejuvenating Serum now. Sodashi recently won the ‘Best Anti-ageing Spa Range’ award – worldwide! Plus they’re chemical free and of course cruelty free! Can’t. Go. Wrong. ha!

My favourite make-up range is AEOS – they just have the most beautiful colours and everything is organic, biodynamic and has tinctures of gem crystals!

You are stranded on a desert island and can only take 3 beauty products with you. What would they be and why?
I’ve always said it’s like trying to choose which children you like the most ha ha! Ok – first my Sodashi Body Butter! It’s so intense – i could use it as my face moisturiser and lip balm too (I’d probably come back from the island with better skin!) – it is pricey but I use mine as a treatment and it’s lasted – definitely one item worth the investment.

My Sodashi Serum of course (but I already mentioned that one so I get to choose another ha ha!), my WotNot Face Wipes (just so damn handy and easy! The lazy cleanser!) and a great face mist! Nothing refreshes and revives like a good face mist! I love the Savi Passionflower and Pomegranate Mist! Gorgeous! (of and of course my certified organic and cruelty free Eco Tan fake tan – I won’t be sunbaking on that desert island but I’ll still need a natural looking ‘shipwrecked’ tan! ha!)

You have an amazing online boutique offering luxury organic and cruelty-free products. How hard was it establishing the business? How did you choose which brands to stock?
When you’re following your passion it’s easy – I would skip a party to study the effects of phenoxyethanol ha! I loved it – it’s so fascinating to me!. I chose companies that not only wowed me with their products and were truly toxic-free but also brands that had great ethos and are lovely to work with. Whats the point of making great products if they include something like palm oil that is contributing to the extinction of entire species of animals? That’s a fail in my book. I’m so lucky to have all of my favourite products at Peachy Clean – brands I believe in and stand by. It makes me feel good about what I do and knowing that people are getting better skin without the side effects. I’m always trialling and on the hunt for new ranges so Peachy Clean is always expanding and changing!

What advice would you want to give to someone wanting to switch to a more natural skincare and cosmetic routine?
Don’t be daunted. It’s so much easier than you think. Switch the everyday stuff first, like hand soaps and toothpastes. When it comes to skin care and make up – nature really does know best. I guarantee if you were to blindfold a group of people and let them try a ‘regular’ brand and a great natural brand – the natural brand would have the best results everytime!

The top 3 toxic ingredients that you need to look out for are:

  • Sodium Lauryl and Laureth Sulfate – Found in 90% of personal care products that foam. Used in car washes, industrial strength floor cleaners and engine degreasers. Can cause eye damage, depression, breathing difficulties, skin irritation, breast cancer etc etc etc
  • Parabens (methyl, butyl, ethyl, propyl) – A synthetic preservative linked to breast cancer, tumors, early puberty, male sterility, female infertility and hormone imbalances.
  • PEG, DEA, MEA and TEA – These foam boosters are known skin/eye irritants and cause contact dermatitis.

But lets face it – not all of us have time to scrutinise the ingredients list and labels lie. That’s why I created an online store where you don’t have to think about whether it’s toxic or cruelty free. You can just get your skin care and home products easily.

What is the most frustrating thing you have come up against in terms of conversations or barriers against living cruelty-free and using natural and organic products?
Oh my god, some of the most vocal people are among the most uneducated! “Oh that hippy stuff won’t work” – “Everything needs to be tested on animals, otherwise how will we know it’s safe for us and our children” – “these chemicals are in safe quantities’ – that one gets me the most. ‘Safe Quantities’ is a bullshit term. The average woman uses between 15-20 products every day (make-up, moisturiser, toothpaste, deodorant…) – that’s instantly 15-20 times the ‘safe amount’ daily! These chemicals build up in your system and is one of the major reasons we’re seeing such a drastic increase in diseases not only in ourselves but in our children who are exposed to these chemicals from birth. It’s just not necessary – why would you even take the chance?

What is your personal opinion about animal testing for cosmetics and also medicinal or research purposes?
Horrendous! It’s our decision to wear make up and use shampoo, not theirs. It’s completely unnecessary in this day and age and yet it still happens. Like gay marriage still being illegal – one day we’re going to have to explain to our grandchildren that we were alive when this backwards nonsense was still going on!

If you had the power to change anything in the cosmetic industry, what would it be?
I would make bullshit illegal! None of this pinkwashing, greenwashing, misleading label stuff. None of the stuff like Elizabeth Arden running huge breast cancer fundraisers to look like the good guys when if they actually cared, they would remove the ingredients that cause breast cancer from their products. No “We don’t test on animals (but the company who owns us does)” nonsense (like The Body Shop who are against animal testing, now owned by L’Oreal – the worlds largest campaigners FOR animal testing?). It’s just such a maze of fibs to sell more products! No more lies – that’s what I want and that’s what you get at Peachy Clean – we list all of the ingredients right there so you can see for yourself and we only choose companies with great ethos!