Natural skincare refers to the use of products that are formulated with natural ingredients derived from plants, minerals, or other natural sources, without the inclusion of synthetic or artificial ingredients. Natural skincare aims to promote healthy skin by harnessing the beneficial properties of natural ingredients while minimizing the potential risks associated with harsh chemicals commonly found in conventional skincare products. Some of the chemicals found in conventional skincare products have been linked to various skin conditions; and health conditions like cancer. There is a myth that if you can't pronounce it, it's not natural. This is a myth because products have scientific names that can be difficult to pronounce. Here's an example " Shea butter is also known as Butyrospermum Parkii. So be careful when assuming big hard to pronounce words mean the product isn't natural.
So what makes a product natural? Here are 5 things to look for when considering a natural brand.
1. Ingredients: Natural skincare products typically contain ingredients such as botanical extracts, essential oils, herbs, fruit extracts, and natural emollients like shea butter or coconut oil. These ingredients are believed to provide various benefits for the skin, such as hydration, nourishment, antioxidant protection, and soothing effects.
2. Avoidance of harmful chemicals: Natural skincare products avoid common synthetic ingredients like parabens, sulfates, phthalates, artificial fragrances, and dyes. These chemicals are often associated with skin irritations, allergic reactions, or long-term health concerns.
3. Environmental sustainability: Most natural skincare brands emphasize sustainability and eco-friendliness. They may use organic or sustainably sourced ingredients, biodegradable packaging, and follow ethical practices throughout production. Smaller brands may choose less expensive packaging like safer plastics due to suppliers’ increased costs of sustainable packaging like glass containers.
4. Mild and gentle formulations: Natural skincare products tend to have milder formulations that are less likely to cause skin irritation or sensitization. However, it's important to note that natural ingredients can still cause allergic reactions in some individuals, so it's advisable to patch test new products before regular use.
5. Customization and holistic approach: Natural skincare often focuses on individual skin needs and embraces a holistic approach to beauty. Brands may offer a range of products targeting different skin types or concerns, and may also promote overall well-being through self-care practices, lifestyle tips, and mindful routines.
When choosing natural skincare products, it's essential to read the ingredient labels and understand the sourcing and manufacturing practices of the brand. Some brands have certifications such as USDA Organic, Ecocert, or COSMOS to ensure the products meet specific organic or natural standards. These certifications can be costly for new start-ups; so asking your specific company for certifications from their supplier is always an option to be sure of the product's authentication. Remember that everyone's skin is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. It's always a good idea to consult with a dermatologist or skincare professional if you have specific skin concerns or conditions. As always, always do a patch test with a new product on your skin.
Here is a good website to check out the safeness of a product's ingredients or a product:
Just add the name of the ingredient into the search bar, scroll to the ingredient at the bottom of the drop bar, then click on it to see if the ingredient is considered clean and natural.