Natural skincare and beauty is having its’ time in the spotlight, written about by bloggers and beauty editors all over the world, people are not only raving about it, they are telling everyone they know. Though quite controversial, there is skepticism about how affective it really is, and what conjugates its’ ‘natural’ ingredients.
Unfortunately there is no current legislation to govern the use of terms such as ‘organic’ and ‘natural’, like there is in the food industry. Therefore the importance is being placed on the background research of brands and their products, especially as anything containing the smallest percentage can be labelled ‘organic’ or ‘natural’. For a product to be certified as organic, the ingredients need to be completely derived from nature and cultivated free from pesticides.
A lot of emphasis has been put on what we consume through our diet and how that affects our health, so the same can be said for what we put on our skin. Our bodies absorb the nutrients that it is given - and/or the chemicals that are being rubbed in daily - just think about how many products you would apply per day by simply showering, moisturising and getting ready for the day.
One thing that can be certain is that organic skincare is better for the environment, from sustainable farming, to the health of wildlife and recyclable packaging. This can also be said to be the reason for it’s rise in popularity. Here are a few key points on the benefits of going natural:
Full of the good stuff
Natural skincare will contain botanicals, antioxidants, essential oils and vitamins. These ingredients are grown without the use of pesticides, herbicides, synthetic fertilisers, GMO’s and parabens.
Our bodies absorb nutrients from not only food, but also what is placed on to our skin, so it’s crucial that we give the largest organ in our body, the right nutrients to have the ability to care for and mend itself. Just like eating fresh bananas, oranges and apples, think of face cleansers and moisturises nourishing and rejuvenating your skin.
Sustainable and organic farming is better for the environment, the health of workers and local communities, because farming without toxins means the water supply and surrounding agriculture is no longer affected by poison.
When ingredients are grown free of pesticides and GMO’s, wildlife such as birds, butterflies, and bees are free to flourish free of deadly chemicals. Recently, micro-beads were completely banned from beauty scrubs as they polluted the ocean and affected marine life.
You’d be hard pressed to find a natural skincare brand who’s complete ethos wouldn’t be surrounded my making everything they make ethical, from packaging, to transport, to using recyclable, biodegradable and reusable containers.
PET plastic is often used, which is made up of raw plant-based materials. This type of material is 100% recyclable and BPA free.
A lot of skincare products and cosmetics are made up of cheap and nasty synthetics. These can be used for the purpose of shelf/storage life, fragrancy and colouring. These ingredients can contain alcohol, heavy metals and petroleum; they are often carcinogenic and toxic to human beings and wildlife.
A few toxic ingredients to keep your eye out for:
- Synthetic Fragrances
- Artificial Colour
- Harsh Detergents
- Propylene Glycol
You can find more as well as their affects here: http://www.beautytruth.com/toxic-ingredients/
For me, I changed my regime to natural skincare as I was prone to adult acne. I had a feeling it had a lot to do with the polluted air I was breathing in each day. I found that using chemically based products stripped my skin of it’s natural oils and therefore produced more, which in turn led to nasty breakouts. This was a cycle I found myself in as the more I tried to ‘cleanse, tone, moisturise’ the worse my skin got. I realised that the high-priced skincare products were made to suck you in; the more breakouts you continued to get, the more you needed to rely on products.
Well, I wanted to try something different. Over the years I heard so many people absolutely loving coconut oil; for all types of reasons; dry skin, tanning oil, skincare, makeup remover, cooking, you name it. I thought I’d give it a try and being really affordable from the local chemist, I decided to use it as my makeup cleanser and face oil that night. Low and behold the natural, cold-pressed oil was a miracle, my skin was totally glowing and I was obsessed. It was no longer dry and irritable, but soft and supple. The idea of putting something on your skin that is derived from nature, untouched from its vitamins and minerals seemed so clear, there was no way I could use products that contained harmful chemicals any longer, especially as I could see the affect it had on my skin.
Of course my transition in to purchasing all natural beauty products is forever changing. I am constantly learning and interested in trying the amazing range of products out there. The best part for me is reading up on the stories behind the brand and why it was so important for the founders to create their products. It feels so good to know who I am supporting and for local, small businesses to utilise the organic farming produce from their country. I love that the natural skincare and beauty industry seek to educate others on their findings, to help the word go round and to support the environment.
Here a few of the the brands I am currently using and loving:
‘Skincare that doesn’t cost the Earth’ (literally and figuratively). If you are looking for affordable, environmentally sustainable and highly efficient skincare, Sukin is for you. I have been using their products for two years now and I can 100% feel the difference, not only does the product smell amazing, it is soft and luxurious to touch. After use, my skin feels silky smooth and I can tell my skin loves drinking in their natural products full of vitamins and essential oils.
Their products are grey water safe, which means they do not affect animals, river streams, and plant life once it goes down your drain. It is also 100% vegan and animal cruelty free, so they don’t use animal derivatives and by-products such as lanolin, honey and bees wax. As a company they are Carbon Neutral and offset their carbon footprint from transporting products, running the factory, and the electricity that run their offices.
I found Botanics in Boots when I was looking for a face oil, I found their amazing 100% Organic Nourishing Facial Oil with Rosehip and could notice the changes in my skin over a two day period. The range is affordable and their packaging is cute, minimal and recyclable. I love that the products are also separated in to different skin types; oily and combination, dehydrated and sensitive, as well as brightening, aging, and mature skin. Botanics also utilise the botanists at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew to seek out the most effective plants to target specific skincare needs.
This miracle water has been a secret of the the French for years, it contains purified water, glycerin and molecules that group together and act like magnet for dirt and oil. A wide range of brands producing great Micellar water is available and the best part is because the formula is so light, there is no need to rinse and the moisturising component can stay on the skin.
I use this to take my make up off each night, the water retains the natural oils instead of stripping them. Both Sukin and Botanics have their own Micellar Water which I love using.
RMS Beauty is founded by prominent make-up artist to the celebs, Rose-Marie Swift. The product range is amazing for organic skincare, makeup and nail polish. Swift created the label after a health scare of her own, through working over 35 years in the cosmetic industry she discovered that her blood contained toxic levels of heavy metals, including aluminium, lead and mercury as well as pesticides and other chemicals. This was a direct result from the the application of harmful, chemical concoctions over the years.
All RMS products are free of synthetic preservatives, harmful chemicals and GMO’s. Instead they are infused with nutrients intended to heal, nourish and synergise with the skin. I am currently using the coconut based cheek and lip cream which glows on the skin, is highly pigmented and soft to apply.
Swift has put all of her beauty knowledge on to a website called www.beautytruth.com which aims to educate about toxins and misconceptions made in the beauty industry. I definitely recommend having a read.
Wherever you buy your skincare, if you're looking for skin food which is organic, eco-friendly and nutritious for your skin, make sure you do your research into the brand before hand. Also, monitor how your skin feels with and without the product to measure what real impact it's having on your skin.