Photo by Emily Lucille
Nontoxic — that’s how beauty products should be. Chicagoan Rhonda Sherwood, now a Connecticut resident, grew up in a “health food” household and committed herself to a nontoxic lifestyle decades ago. Now, she shares her passion for safe products with the local community through her store, Sherwood Green Life, on Greenwich Avenue in Greenwich. Sherwood Green Life sells plant-based skincare, makeup, bath and body, and haircare products that are all free of petroleum and artificial ingredients.
Sherwood says, “We’re like scientific detectives, constantly researching products to make sure they are not harsh, allergenic, or contain harmful ingredients.” The lifestyle shop offers everything from skincare lines and makeup (including concealers, foundations, lipsticks, and brushes) to bath-and-body products (soap, deodorant, scrubs) to shampoos and conditioners free of toxins that harm human health and the environment.
Sherwood opened Sherwood Green Life in November to be a “trusted resource for all things nontoxic.” After the mom of three met the chairman of the department of preventive medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York in 2007, she became a board member of the Mount Sinai Children’s Environmental Health Center (CEHC) in New York and helped raise millions of dollars to support research intended to identify chemicals that cause disorders, conditions, and diseases like autism, ADHD, childhood obesity, asthma, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s. She also created a fundraiser called Greening Our Children — a community of women in Westchester County, Fairfield County, and New York City who are dedicated to environmental health.
Her experience working with the CEHC and her biomedical engineering degree enable her to screen products for safety. She makes a point to not use ingredients on the Forbidden List (including formaldehyde, aluminum, parabens, and petrochemicals) in products sold at her store.
Sherwood says, “Sherwood Green Life has been a wonderful way to reach a larger audience and educate them on the benefits of using beauty products free of hormone disruptors, carcinogens, and other harmful ingredients.” Popular products include OSEA’s Undaria Algae Oil, $48 (a favorite of Victoria Beckham) and Josh Rosebrook’s Vital Balm, $45. This summer, the brand plans to expand to include nontoxic home products, like mattresses, water filters, bed sheets, and cleaning supplies.