Is there any word more dangerous than “natural”? It means so much and technically so little at the same time. Especially when it comes to our beauty products.
Just because there’s no federally mandated regulation for the word “natural” doesn’t mean it isn’t a useful term. In some cases it can be the distinguishing factor between a completely artificial and potentially harmful product, and one that’s, well, not.
Organic certification is difficult for personal care products for many reasons. Because they often contain a lot of water (which is not organic), the volume of organic ingredients can be overshadowed by the presence of water. Other ingredients, like baking soda, salt, zinc oxide aren’t sourced from living things (i.e. plants) making them ineligible for organic certification.
Enter the word “natural” which has often come to mean what isn’t in a product as much as it means what is in there. The absence of synthetic chemicals, not necessarily the presence of organic ingredients, is one of the more common reasons you’ll see “natural” on your fave beauty products. And it’s worthwhile to take a peek at the label—especially when it comes to these three beauty products.
“Natural” beauty products can often contain a lot of truly natural ingredients–we’re talking emollient oils and butters straight from plants like shea butter, cacao butter, jojoba, almond, sunflower, or apricot oils. And speaking of oils, a product that gets its fragrance from essential oils instead of synthetic fragrance isn’t just good for your health–you’ll immediately smell the difference. And chances are, you’ll love the smell of nature at its finest.
Of course, it’s the health reasons that make making the switch so significant. Are you ready to go natural?
The Top 3 Beauty Products You Need to Make Sure are Completely Natural
- Deodorant – If you’re still a die-hard antiperspirant and deodorant person, consider this your intervention. Conventional deodorants have been linked to an increased risk of developing breast cancer. They contain endocrine disrupting chemicals that can throw off your body’s hormonal system, leading to mood swings, weight gain, and reproductive issues, as well as the C word. Your underarms contain sweat glands (duh) and they can absorb and retain these chemicals to damaging effect, particularly if you shave your pits and then apply the chemicals soon after. Do your bod a favor and make the switch to a natural deodorant ASAP.
- Hair Care – Whether it’s shampoo and conditioner, styling products, or hair coloring, we give our tresses a beat down, regularly. Not only do synthetic chemical products strip our hair of natural oils, leading to more dryness, frizz, and breakage, but it can also leach harmful toxins into our bodies, particularly if they come in contact with our scalp (which they do). From the formaldehyde in straightening products to the phthalates and parabens in shampoos, you put your health at risk every time you use a conventional hair care product. There’s a reason pregnant women are advised not to color treat, relax, or perm their hair—these chemicals go straight to our reproductive system and our babies. Fortunately, there are many effective natural hair care products that can get the job done without the risk.
- Skin Crèmes – Whether it’s your favorite under eye treatment, moisturizing face cream, or the super rich stuff you lather into your elbows and knees, skin crème can be loaded with petroleum byproducts and ingredients damaging to the skin and the planet. Considering you likely use a skin crème daily, the quality of the ingredients is a serious issue. Add to that your sunscreen, which may include chemicals that cause skin irritation and inflammation, and you’re setting your skin up for disaster. You know, but no pressure! The good news is that there are so many brands (ahem) making lux, rich, and super amazing skin crème products that will make you never want to look at conventional skincare again.
Looking to make the switch now?