Using all-natural skin care products is taking over. Consumers have discovered the fabulous benefits of using skincare and makeup that is formulated using pure ingredients from recognizable sources – the earth. This is opposed to having shampoos, cleansers, moisturizers, and other items synthesized from chemicals, sometimes toxic ones, and having them absorbed by the skin.
What’s even better is discovering organic skincare solutions are available which use ingredients made from plant sources that were grown without the use of pesticides or chemicals. Because why bother using natural ingredients that have just been soaked in yucky toxins for their whole growth span? That’s what you were trying to avoid by going natural!
What’s are the dangerous chemicals used in those other products?The David Suzuki Foundation has published a list of “The Dirty Dozen” – primary ingredients to avoid in cosmetic products. Products that we use every day might contain industrial chemicals, surfactants, plasticizers, degreasers, pesticides, carcinogens (cause cancer), reproductive toxins (dangerous for the reproductive system), and hormone disruptors (interfere with the endocrine system function and may cause tumors). This list includes:
• BHA and BHT
• Coal Tar Dyes
• Parfum (fragrance)
• DEA-related ingredients
• Dibutyl phthalate
• Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives
• PEG compounds
• Sodium laureth sulfate
You’ll find many products these days have caught onto the stigma and protests against the use of parabens and phthalates, yet the others remain on ingredients lists. The list is also not exhaustive. Parfum, or fragrance, is especially widespread in use and could be a combination of thousands of potentially dangerous chemicals, some synthesized from petroleum, and are hazardous to health. All-natural products feature the scents of their ingredients like flowers and fruit oils.
An all-natural product might not be organic, however. What does organic mean? A USDA Certified Organic product has 95% or higher organic plant-based ingredients. No pesticides, fertilizers, or modified genes were used in their growth or harvesting. In addition, the farming practices are more environmentally ethical and use recycling and promote biodiversity. There are no synthetic compounds used to create the ingredients or are part of the ingredients list.
You’ll want to be careful when selecting products that use the words ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ as marketing descriptors instead of straightforward, authentic descriptions of what’s inside. Natural can mean some natural ingredients are included but it’s not every single one. The same goes with organic. The rules with organic productsare a little tricky because the process for companies and ingredients to become certified is lengthy and therefore some products might not be legally allowed to use the USDA Certified Organic stamp, but they still use organic growing processes. Buying certified is the best, and products labelled “organic” are still much better than non-organic products.
Other perks to organic products are that they smell and feel great. The natural scents derived from real herbs, flowers, vegetables, fruits, spices, and oils are authentic and pleasing versus chemical mock-ups that fail to capture the true essence of plants and have a chemical odor to them. You’ll still want to pay attention to your allergies or sensitivities with natural products, however, because certain plants may trigger a reaction just as chemicals may. If you’re unsure about an ingredient, test a small section first.
When you learn about all the chemicals on ingredients lists and the pesticides used on many natural ingredients, it’s clear that 100% all-natural and organic products are a necessity for health and safety.