The next time you need to restock the natural skin care on your vanity, prepare yourself a little list of what to look for in your new products.
Is it really so simple that you’re going to go out and just select any product off the shelf because it says „natural“? Probably not. You already know what you are looking for in a product. Most of us want it to feel a certain way or smell a certain way, but undoubtedly, we ALL want it to help us look good and maintain or improve our skin. So, how are we ensuring that the products deliver these important details? Most of what you need to know can be found through deductive reasoning.
1. Steer clear from plastics
Plastic packaging is not natural and shouldn’t contain natural cosmetics. The microscopic holes in plastics can alter the effectiveness of the product over time, by allowing the good ingredients to dissipate and unwanted plastic molecules to seep into the product.
2. Know your preservatives
Synthetic preservatives are more than just suspected to be triggers for allergies and intolerances. If you read words like Parabens, Phenoxy Ethanol, Salicilate, Benzoate, Methylchloroisothiazolinone etc. on the packaging, don’t be fooled by the natural „label falsification“ that may be on the front. These materials are not directly from nature.
On the flip side of this, it could be said that synthetic preservatives are better than nothing. If a product is trying to be so natural that it doesn’t contain any preservatives, then unfortunately, it could become an ideal breeding ground for bacteria and germs.
Preservatives that occur naturally and are not harmful, are those such as Tea Tree oil derivatives, Propolis, etc.
3. Read the INCI
Every skin care product sold needs to have an International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients, short INCI. This lists everything that is in the product, and a quick read of it will help you understand that terms like “biologically derived”, and “ecologically sourced” which may be listed on the front of the package, don’t line up with the chemical ingredients listed on the back.
4. You can’t always associate white with purity
People connect the colour „white“ with characteristics like purity and cleanliness. All hygienic things are white. However, cosmetic products which are made from 100 percent natural ingredients can’t be clinically white – except if they contain synthetic dyes. Why would you seek out a natural non-harmful product, only to put dye on your skin?
5. Quality labels may not guarantee what you believe they do
There are many different types of quality labels used in cosmetics but they do not provide a 100% guarantee. Of the 12,000 additives permitted in cosmetic products, many are known to be carcinogenic and/or allergenic. Labelling processes often have nothing to do with the science behind the long term effects of ingredients. Benzyl Alcohol and Dicaprylyl Ether are two examples. Both can be found in many „natural“ cosmetics yet Benzyl Alcohol is suspect and not yet fully tested, and Dicaprylyl Ether is already known to be a dangerous chemical.
At JK7® we like to always encourage our customers, by letting them know that they hold the key to making the necessary changes in the cosmetic industry.
The notion of customer empowerment is not a new one, but marketing strategies and slogans can sometimes overpower our desire to know the truth. For many of us, it is still easier and often feels better, to simply trust in the words and appearance of the brands we use.
The key to getting companies to use better practices and provide better products and services is to demand that they do, by refraining from making purchases that you know promote the production of more of these untruths.