There are so many key phrases we’re told to look for when shopping for our makeup and skincare: natural, organic, chemical-free, cruelty-free, and eco-friendly. If only all of them were easier to decipher, skincare shopping would be a lot easier. But when natural can mean, “we use some natural ingredients,” and cruelty-free can mean “we still test our products on animals in China,” we have to know how to read a label, more now than ever.
One of the biggest misconceptions is the idea of natural versus organic and that they are interchangeable labels. A product can be natural and organic, but not all natural products are organic, or even 100 percent natural. It’s important for all of your skincare to be natural for your overall health, but the benefit of using natural and organic skincare provides your skin with the purest form of the ingredient on the market.
Major brands are catching on to the fact to that consumers want natural and organic skincare. Without even changing the formulas, many are slapping a “natural” or “organic” sticker when it’s not. If it says “natural,” read the label fully. If it says “organic,” make sure it’s labeled USDA certified organic. While major corporations may want you to stick to the brands you’ve always been exposed to in magazines and on television, it’s time to treat your body with respect by switching to what it really needs: natural and organic skincare.
What Does Organic Mean?
If the product is USDA certified organic, that means it is made of 95 percent or more of organic ingredients derived from plant sources. All of these ingredients were grown without pesticides, bioengineered genes, or petroleum-based fertilizers, which could be toxic to the environment. Also, these ingredients were farmed using organic farming methods that recycle sources and promote biodiversity. Natural products are simply derived from natural sources without added synthetic compounds.
Everything Will Smell Better
When ingredients are natural and organic, everything is naturally-scented. Your rose cream is made from real rose water and your essential oils are from the real plant, never an imitation. After a few weeks, you’ll be able to notice the difference between an imitation fragrance and a natural fragrance and you’ll never want to switch back. However, just because it’s a natural scent, doesn’t mean you have a lesser chance of irritation as natural sources can affect your allergies just as badly. If you’re prone to breakouts, it’d be best to test a product on a small area of skin before using it on your whole body. To make sure your fragrance is natural, look for “natural fragrance” or “fragrance-free” on the item. And keep an eye out for chemicals that act as a fragrance such as limonene, a liquid that gives off an orange-like smell.
Your Skin Will Be Softer
Did you know that many drugstore and luxury brands add drying agents to products such as moisturizers, lip balm, and conditioner? If you actually want your products to moisturize, make sure they say “sulfate-free.”
Your Skin Might Clear Up
The reason this is a “might” is because everyone’s tolerance varies for different ingredients, both natural and unnatural. You might break out using only toxic makeup and switching to organic makeup might be your cure. Or, you could find that switching to pure ingredients such as jojoba oil, raspberry oil, etc., might be your worst nightmare. If you’re prone to breakouts, try new products one a time to test your tolerance.
It’s Better for Your Wallet (in the Long Run)
Anybody who’s ever switched from drugstore skin care to natural and organic skincare might be laughing out loud at the fact that the switch could be good for your wallet, but there is merit to this statement! The average consumer buys products from a variety of brands with prices that vary from a few dollars to a couple hundred dollars. If you replace your luxury, designer, or even spa brands with natural and organic brands, you’re very likely to spend much less. For instance, this four-ounce black soap facial wash by Shea Terra Organics and this facial exfoliator by Province Apothecary are both under $20 and they will last you a few months. Plus you may find that switching to organic and natural products improves your skin and simplifies your routine, meaning less money spent other products.