Natural beauty is booming right now. From spas to Sephora, we have more access than ever to high quality, luxury natural beauty for skin, body and hair.
But just because it’s natural, is it better for you? And just because conventional products contain chemicals, are they inherently bad?
As I discussed on The Chat, there’s no single answer, but there are some clear facts to help us navigate the world of natural beauty.
- Beauty is one of the least regulated consumer product categories on the market—meaning it’s actually legal to sell skin care and cosmetics that contain harmful chemicals linked to cancer and other serious health concerns.
- The EU has banned or restricted the use of over over 1,300 ingredients while the US has banned only 11. Learn more about this madness here.
- There is no standard for the word “natural”. Anyone can put the word “natural” on their packaging to seduce customers.
- Also, just because a product is “natural” doesn’t mean it’s more effective at preventing aging, or addressing skin concerns like dryness, hyperpigmentation or acne.
The #1 key to identifying the best in beauty is knowing which ingredients to avoid.
But, if you avoid these ingredients, natural products are still far more beneficial and effective than conventional products.
The outer most skin layer - the stratum corneum - absorbs at minimum 20% of what is topically applied. If the dermal layer is damaged, and therefore weaker, it will absorb even more...up to 60%.
Most of us have some damage - either because of harsh detergents, alcohols and preservatives in our conventional skincare products, or because of sun damage, pollution and oxidative stress. When our top skin layer is damaged, our lipid barrier that keeps skin moisturized becomes weakened, and our skin becomes dry, and more wrinkles appear.
Many conventional products will try to mask wrinkles or artificially hydrate with silicone-based ingredients that simply sit on top of the skin, so you might think you see immediate results, but it’s just a mask! There is no long-term benefit, and in fact, it’s suffocating the skin, which leads to more dehydration, and therefore more visible wrinkles.
To maintain and strengthen our natural lipid barrier, we must replenish our skin with powerful antioxidants, nutrients and vitamins. Plant-based skincare contains beneficial ingredients including: CoQ10, Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamins A-K, Ferulic Acid, Humectants, Proteins, Acids, Antioxidants, Lipids, Omegas, Probiotics, Peptides and Beta Carotene.
Choosing favorite natural beauty products is like choosing a favorite child. But, here are a few everyday go-to's that will never disappoint:
Beauty Counter Routine Clean and and Gentle Exfoliator
- Two steps to moisturized and exfoliate
- Features coconut oil, aloe, witch hazel and jojoba beads
- Leaves skin cleansed with no dryness or residue
- 27 active ingredients to help reduce inflammation and calm redness
- Acts as a moisturizer and treatment in one
- Ideal for for sensitive, rosacea, acne, dry and uneven skin tone
- Physical (not chemical) SPF with non-nano zinc oxide
- Quick to absorb, non-greasy and hydrating
- Supported by free radical-fighting red raspberry seed, avocado, kukui, jojoba and macadamia oils
- Soft and creamy moisturizing balm
- Featuring extract from the indigo plant and Vitamin C Ester and other antioxidants
- Boosts collagen, restores elasticity and deeply hydrates