Many people ask me what is the difference between natural, organic skincare and other products and ask why is it better to use natural?
Well the answers are to be found by looking on a product label, it is really worth taking the time to educate yourself around the ingredients that are in the products you use on your skin and body.
There is a trust in commercial, branded products that makes us feel safe, and we would assume that they wouldn’t use any ingredient that may affect our health or wellbeing, however this is not necessarily the case.
The problem arises with cosmetics companies wanting to make as much profit on their products as possible, so they often use cheap fillers and ingredients that have no place being on our skin, such as mineral oil or liquid paraffin that are found in many products, these being a by-product of petroleum!
In the case of mineral oil it can create a silky texture to the skin and therefore make us feel that they are moisturising and the aim is to retain moisture, however it sits on top of the skin providing a barrier which will stop the skin being able to eliminate properly, trapping bacteria and blocking the pores, causing acne and congestion as a result.
Another element used in many skincare products are preservatives and these are called parabens.
Parabens help to prolong the shelf life of any product and help to preserve it, especially if that product contains a water based ingredient due to potential for mould or bacteria to develop.
Parabens can contain some unwanted effects on our health, this has been identified because they are xenoestrogens which means they mimic oestrogen in the body, this effect has been linked to reproductive issues and researchers found traces in breast tumour tissue so there may be links to the growth of cancer cells.
It also seems that parabens can be stored in the body resulting in a cumulative effect over time and given that Parabens are said to be in about 85% of personal care products it gives you something to be aware of, even if there is a low risk when a small amount is being used, every day over a period of years and it may well make an impact on your health.
We are said to absorb about 60% of everything that we put on our skin,and that enters into our body, for instance there was a study done on the use of Sodium Laurel Sulphate a foaming agent that is in most shampoos, shower gels and toothpaste and traces were found in their Liver, heart, eyes and brain of the participants studied.
Add into the mix a cheap synthetic fragrance which can cause skin allergies and irritation.
Some products may mention the use of natural or even organic ingredients yet be aware as they may have more irritating preservatives or fragrance added, there’s no point using a product that contains one botanical only to find if you look at the label it has many different synthetic ingredients in it!
Very often the longer the list of the ingredients that you can’t understand the more synthetic that product will be, when you see ingredients in Latin that will usually be a natural element in the product.
As better alternative, plant botanicals have the power to nourish your skin at a very deep level to heal, to reduce inflammation, balance and harmonise the skin surface especially where there is problems with the skin such as acne, psoriasis, eczema, oily, dry or congested skin and plant ingredients such as essential oils can contain natural anti- bacterial and anti-septic properties.
Our body comes into contact with more chemicals than ever, in our air pollution, the pesticides in our food and chemicals in our household cleaning products, affecting our health but also our environment as detergents and body care products will end up in our water ways and sea.
There has been a recent discovery of plastic microbeads used in facial and body scrubs, needing to be banned from use due to the damaging impact on our sea life that swallows these harmful beads to fatal effect.
If you are wanting to ditch you synthetic skincare products and switch to some healthy naturals there are many alternatives now available, Contact me for advice on how to do this and a free skin consultation.