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Nature's Way: SF's Zia Cosmetics line combines high-quality vitamins, antioxidants and botanicals without any hidden allergens, irritants and carcinogens.

Natural food stores are a great beauty resource

By Diana Rupp

The mainstay of natural food store beauty aisles used to be specialty items such as unsweetened toothpaste, ear-cleaning candles, deodorant crystals and sandalwood perfume. Nowadays these stores are shedding their granola image by stocking unique skin and body care products made from high-tech formulations of natural ingredients that are reasonably priced, cruelty-free and in environmentally friendly packaging. The following is a sample of goods worth checking out:

  • Naturcolor permanent hair color gel works without ammonia and comes in 32 shades. Good for up to two applications depending on hair length, $14.

  • Earth Therapeutics Tea Tree Oil Foot Peel contains new- fangled alpha-hydroxy acids mixed with the ancient antiseptic, deodorizing and healing of Australian tea tree oil. Also good on hands, knees, elbows and other dry areas, $7.

  • Lipstick-wearers ingest an average of 60 kg of product over a lifetime. Unlike mainstream brands, which contain lead and aluminum based synthetic dyes, Living Nature uses non-toxic minerals and oxides. The only drawback is the limited palette of natural pinks and earthy brown-reds. Comes with a muslin drawstring bag for safekeeping, $10.

  • Sundog shampoo and conditioner with hemp seed oil and avocado builds stronger, healthier hair. Gently scented and sulfate free, $7 each.

  • SHAVE moisturizing cream for men and women by Alba Botanica has emollient oils instead of soap to condition skin and soften hair for a close shave. Available in mango vanilla, coconut lime, Bengal spice and pearberry, $4.

  • SF's Zia Cosmetics combines high-quality vitamins, antioxidants and botanicals with the latest in scientific research. The outstanding Ultimates line features a popular "C" serum, face moisturizer, eye creme and all-over body moisturizer without any of the hidden allergens, irritants and carcinogens you might find in high-end department-store brands. $16-$50.

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From the December 21, 1998 issue of the Metropolitan.

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