What Does A Medical Esthetician Buy From Whole Foods Beauty?

I get lost in the Beauty Section at Whole Foods, Whole Body—it’s the best part of grocery shopping. It used to be tiny, with just a few “green” products, but now they’ve expanded into a practically full-fledged beauty store. And this isn’t just supermarket skincare: you can find serums and creams priced upwards of $75 in the Whole Foods aisle. There used to be a clear line between dermatological and clinical products vs. organic or green products: the huge variety of skincare is starting to blur this line. Personally, I mix and match, using gentle cleansers matched with more powerful peels. At the end of the day, I want what works. Every time I roam the vast aisles of beauty when I go grocery shopping, I wonder: what would a more clinical eye buy here? I reached out to Charlotte’s Book expert Jordana Mattioli, famous not only for her facial prowess, but for her rigorous ingredient breakdowns (take a peek at Instagram for her insightful posts on everything from lip filler to the latest organic candle)—she’s a perfect fit for the Charlotte’s Book mantra. Curious what Jordana would buy at Whole Body? Here’s her list of what, why, and key ingredients. You’re welcome!

Robin Shobin, Founder, Charlotte’s Book

CLEANSERS

MyChelle Gentle Cleansing Wash, $16.00

Why? This unscented creamy gel is perfect for sensitive skin because of its gentle cleansing agents and soothing botanicals, plus it removes makeup easily.

Ingredient highlights: Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Rosa Centifolia Flower Water Made without GMO, Gluten, Parabens, Petroleum, Phthalates, Silicones, Sulfates, Ureas, Artificial Fragrances, and Artificial Colors. Vegan. Cruelty-free.

Alba Botanica Even Advanced Sea Mineral Cleansing Gel, $10.00

Why? Gentle enough for all skin types, its light foaming action to leave skin clean but not tight.

Ingredient highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycerin, Camilla Sinensis Leaf Extract. No animal testing, no parabens, phthalates, or synthetic fragrances.

DERMA-E Purifying Gel Cleanser, $15.50

Why? Oily skin will love this fragrance-free gel cleanser thanks to charcoal, which acts like a dirt busting magnet.

Ingredient highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Charcoal Powder, Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack) Extract, Undaria Pinnatifida (Wakame, Kimarine®) Extract, Epilobium Angustifolium (Canadian Willowherb™) Extract, Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract. 100% vegan, cruelty-free, alcohol free, no parabens, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, GMO-free.

MAKEUP REMOVER WIPES

Acure Organics Argan Cleansing Towelettes, $10.00

Why? These fragrance-free wipes are thick and soft, perfect for gently dissolving makeup and won’t irritate eyes.

Ingredient highlights: Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Organic Argania Spinosa (Argan) Oil, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil. Vegan, sulfate free, paragon free, cruelty free.

TONERS

Andalou Naturals Blossom + Leaf Toning Refresher, $12.00

Why? This toner is perfect for oily or combination skin. With such a huge dose of antioxidants and skin soothers, there is so much good stuff in here, it could take the place of a serum.

Ingredient highlights:  anti-irritants, and skin-soothing agents: Aloe Barbadensis Juice*, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Lauric Acid, Fruit Stem Cells (Malus Domestica, Solar Vitis) and BioActive 8 Berry Complex*, Resveratrol, Ubiquinone (CoQ10), Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Aspalathus Linearis (Rooibos), Hibiscus Sabdariffa and Camellia Sinensis (White Tea). Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan.

DERMA-E Evenly Radiant Brightening Toner, $12.00

Why? Niacinamide and vitamin C are the third and fourth ingredients, so you’ll see any pigmentation brighten up fast!

Ingredient highlights: antioxidants, cell-communicating and repairing ingredients, plant-based anti-irritants:  Glycerin, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C, Stay-C® 50), Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi (Bearberry) Leaf Extract, Lilium Candidum (Madonna Lily) Leaf Cell Extract. 100% vegan, cruelty-free, alcohol free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

EXFOLIANTS

Mad Hippie Exfoliating Serum, $28.00

Why? Not only do you get 10% alpha hydroxy acids, but also the best of the best in hydrating and antioxidants.

Ingredient highlights: Glycolic Acid, Vitamin B5 (Panthenol), Lactic Acid, Matrixes, Tripeptide-38, Niacinamide, Sodium Hyaluronate, White Tea Extract (Camelia Sinensis), Goji Berry Extract (Lycium Barbarum). It’s also cruelty free, BPA-free, and fully recyclable.

Trilogy Gentle Facial Exfoliant, $35.00

Why? This creamy scrub has just the right balance of grit—any skin type would benefit from gentle exfoliation once or twice a week.

Ingredient highlights: Kaolin Clay, Jojoba wax beads. It’s also cruelty free, non-gmo, no animal testing.

MASKS

Alba Botanica Hawaiian Facial Mask Pore-fecting Papaya Enzyme, $21.00

Why?  This is a non-drying gel mask that has enough enzymes  where you’ll be buttery smooth and soft after just one use.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Certified Organic Ingredient), Glycerin, Protease, Carica Papaya (Papaya) Fruit Extract,  Ananas Sativus (Pineapple) Fruit Extract. No: Animal Testing, Artificial Colors, Parabens, Phthalates, Sodium Lauryl / Laureth Sulfate or Sodium Methyl Sulfate.

DERMA-E Hydrating Mask with Hyaluronic Acid, $29.50

Why? Creamy but not greasy, and the zinc and plant oils will be so soothing.

Ingredient Highlights: Glycerin, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Organic Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Organic Theobroma Grandiflorium (Cupuacu Butter), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract’ Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate. 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

DERMA-E Purifying 2-in-1 Charcoal Mask, $19.50

Why? Clay based masks are so great for spot treating oily areas of the face, this gets even more effective due to addition of charcoal: plus you’ll get a little scrubbing action when you remove it from the apricot seed powder.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Kaolin, Bentonite, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Seed Powder, Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack) Extract, Undaria Pinnatifida (Wakame, Kimarine®) Extract, Charcoal Powder, Epilobium Angustifolium (Canadian Willowherb™) Extract, Panthenol (Provitamin B5), Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract. It is also 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

FACE OILS 

Acure Organics Facial Marula Oil, $20.00

Why? Marula is an antioxidant, reduces inflammation and help fights free-radical damage. This is great for sensitive skin.

Ingredient Highlights: Pure Marula. It’s also vegan, sulfate free, paragon free, and cruelty free.

Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+, $36.00

Why? A cocktail of four of my favorite nourishing and soothing antioxidant oils, soaks in fast.

Ingredient Highlights: Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Seed Oil, Solanum Lycopersicum (Tomato) Seed Oil, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry) Seed Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract. Cruelty free, non-gmo, no animal testing.

Trilogy CoQ10 Booster Oil, $32.00

Why? Super dry skin will love this oil. It’s loaded with antioxidants and skin firming coQ10.

Ingredient Highlights: Macadamia Ternifolia (Macadamia) Seed Oil, Fragaria Vesca (Strawberry) Seed Oil, Vaccinium Angustifolia (Blueberry) Seed Oil, Nigella Sativa (Black Caraway) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil. Cruelty free, non-gmo, no animal testing

SERUMS — BRIGHTENING/VITAMIN C

Andalou Naturals Turmeric + C Enlighten Serum, $18.00

Why?  Vitamin C and turmeric will brighten, plus the hyaluronic acid and plant oils will instantly hydrate and plump.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Juice, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Extract, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Hyaluronic Acid, Vitis Vinifera (Grape Seed) Polyphenols, Borago Officinalis (Borage) and Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Oils. Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Gluten-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan

SERUMS — HYALURONIC ACID

DERMA-E Hydrating Serum With Hyaluronic Acid, $29.50

Why? This is a creamy serum that all skin types can use for instant soothing hydration: it’s awesome for under eyes too.

Ingredient Highlights: Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid; Actimoist® Bio-1), Ascorbyl Palmitate (C-Ester), Panthenol (Provitamin B5), Allantoin. 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

Earth Science Maximum Hydration Hyaluronic Acid Serum, $24.95

Why? This gel soaks in quickly, great for congested skin that still needs moisture. I also love seeing soothing botanicals along with the hyaluronic acid and sodium pca.

Ingredient Highlights: Glycerin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile) Flower Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Algae Extract, Sodium PCA. Unscented. pH 6.0 / Vegan / Gluten Free.

SERUMS — VITAMIN A

DERMA-E Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin A Night Serum, $17.25

Why? Retinol palmitate is a great form of vitamin A thats gentle, plus there are added antioxidants and skin soothers, so any skin types that have previous irritation with retinoids should try this.

Ingredient Highlights: Glycerin, Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract* (2%), Panthenol (Provitamin B5), Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil. 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

MOISTURIZERS FOR NORMAL TO OILY SKIN

Andalou Naturals Acai + White Tea Oil-Free Moisturizer, $31.95

Why? Great array of antioxidants in a sheer light base with no slick residue.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Juice, Vegetable Glycerin, Saccharomyces Xylinum (Kombucha) Black Tea Ferment, BioActive 8 Berry Complex. Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Gluten-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan.

DERMA-E Purifying Oil-Free Moisturizer, $29.50

Why? Lightweight aloe base plus antioxidants. I love seeing charcoal and specific botanicals to help control oil.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin,Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack) Extract, Undaria Pinnatifida (Wakame, Kimarine®) Extract, Epilobium Angustifolium (Canadian Willowherb™) Extract, Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract* (1%), Charcoal Powder, 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

MOISTURIZERS FOR NORMAL TO DRY SKIN

Trilogy Line Smoothing Day Cream, $39.00

Why? Nourishing but not greasy, this is a gentle option for battling wrinkles with plant-based ingredients that have a proven track record of strengthening collagen.

Ingredient Highlights: Glycerin (Vegetable),  Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Dipalmitoyl Hydroxyproline. Cruelty free, non-gmo, no animal testing.

Andalou Naturals Argan + Omega Natural Glow 3 in 1 Treatment, $21

Why? Brighteners like vitamin c and such a huge array of powerful antioxidants make this great for dry skin that likes a dewy look.

Ingredient Highlights: Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower), Argania Spinsosa (Argan), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba), Linum Usitatissimum (Flax), Vaccinium Macrocarpon (Cranberry), Camelina Sativa, Borago Officinalis (Borage), Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) and Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oils*, BioActive 8 Berry Complex*, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Camellia Sinensis (WhiteTea), Aspalathus Linearis (Rooibos). Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Gluten-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan

THE EYES

Andalou Naturals Luminous Eye Serum, $19.99

Why? Eye serums are great for the morning because they don’t smudge eye makeup, and this one is a perfect formula to plump and cool on contact.

Ingredient Highlights: Aloe Barbadensis Juice*, Vegetable Glycerin, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) and Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Extracts*, Lycium Barbarum (Goji) Glycopeptide, Sodium PCA, Hyaluronic Acid, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Caffeine (Green Coffee), Tocopherol (Vitamin E). It is also Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Gluten-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan.

Mad Hippie Eye Cream, $24.99

Why? SO MANY actives that are a perfect anti-aging combo, and the formula is lush and creamy.

Ingredient Highlights: Niacinamide, Haloxyl, Matrixyl 3000, Glycerin, Vitamin E (Tocopheryl Acetate), Squalene, Vitamin C (Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate), Argan Oil, Potassium Sorbate, Chamomile Flower Extract (Recutita Matricaria), Vitamin E Acetate, Ceramide 3, White Tea (Camellia Sinensis Extract), Pomegranate Seed Oil (Punica Granatum). Cruelty free, BPA-free, and fully recyclable

Trilogy Eye Contour Cream, $32.50

Why? This is a creamy gel with soothing botanicals that nourishes without leaving any residue.

Ingredient Highlights: Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Glycerin (Vegetable), Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Rosa Canina (Rosehip) Seed Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Oil (and) Tocopherol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Euphrasia Officinalis (Eyebright) Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil

SPF

DERMA-E Antioxidant Natural Sunscreen SPF 30 Oil-Free Face Lotion, $19.75

Why? This is a mattifying formula with a super high concentration of zinc, plus additional protection from vitamin c and green tea. Awesome for oily skin.

Ingredient Highlights: Active Ingredient: Zinc Oxide 16%, Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract* (1%), Sodium Ascorbyl  Phosphate (Vitamin C, Stay-C® 50). 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

Kiss My Face Face + Neck Face Factor 30 Broad Spectrum SPF 30, $12.99

Why? Oily and combination skin will love this lightweight formula. It’s sheer, with additional good-for-your-skin ingredients like peptides and antioxidants.

Ingredient Highlights: Octinoxate (7.5%), Octisalate (3%), Zinc Oxide (3%) Acetyl Hexapeptide 8, Ascorbyl Palmitate (Vitamin C), Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate. Cruelty free, paraben free, gluten free, no SLS, no phthalates, vegan.

Alba Botanica Very Emollient Sunscreen Mineral Protection, Fragrance Free SPF 30, $8.99

Why? Super creamy and soothing formula that dry skin will love.

Ingredient Highlights: Zinc Oxide (14.5 %), Titanium Dioxide (2.0 %) Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil. No: Animal Testing, Artificial Colors, Parabens, Phthalates, Sodium Lauryl / Laureth Sulfate or Sodium Methyl Sulfate.

MyChelle Sun Shield SPF 28 Unscented, $20

Why? Lightweight mineral-based SPF that blends in so easily.

Ingredient Highlights: Zinc Oxide 11.6% (ZinClear™), Titanium Dioxide .67%  Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Isononyl Isononanoate, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Squalene. Made without GMO, Gluten, Parabens, Petroleum, Phthalates, Silicones, Sulfates, Ureas, Artificial Fragrances, and Artificial Colors. Vegan. Cruelty-free.

TINTED SPF 

DERMA-E BB Crème SPF 25, $23.75

Why? Comes in two shades that give just enough coverage, plus long-term benefits from ingredients I love to see like niacinamide, peptides and antioxidants.

Ingredient HighlightsOctinoxate 7.0%, Zinc Oxide 6.86%, Titanium Dioxide 2.87%, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Organic Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract* (.1%), Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi (Bearberry) Leaf Extract, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-38, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin (Matrixyl® synthe’6®), Acetyl Hexapeptide-8 (Argireline®) It’s also 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten free, GMO-free.

Andalou Naturals All-in-One Beauty Balm Sheer Tint with SPF 30, $15.50

Why? Hydrating tinted SPF that goes beyond basic with the addition of skin-repairing ingredients.

Ingredient Highlights: Zinc Oxide 20.0%, Aloe Barbadensis Juice, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) and Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Oils, Hyaluronic Acid, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Oil*, Algae and Cucumis Melo (Melon) Extracts. Non-GMO, Cruelty-Free, Gluten-Free, Eco-Friendly, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Vegan.

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You can actually win some of Jordana’s picks in our winter sweepstakes. Check it out! It’s awesome. Jordana also explains why medical estheticians are the perfect addition to your skincare arsenal. 

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