A simple definition of Organic would be any substance derived from a living matter. A broader definition of Organic would be any substance derived from a living thing without synthetic chemicals, engineered processes, and unnatural habitat.
The Organic Lifestyle.
Organic means food material for most people. However, eating organically derived foods, living a least burdensome lifestyle, and conserving energy is part of a natural lifestyle.
How can we help the environment by using organic cosmetics? How do I spot natural products?
Are you excited? Keep reading.
The Case for Organic Cosmetics
The market for Cosmetics and Beauty industry grows by five percent every year. There is ever increasing demand for skin care and beauty products due to increasing population, awareness, and desire. The industry cannot meet this demand by using only natural elements. Therefore, synthetic chemicals that simulate the effects of naturally occurring substances are extensively used in making cosmetics, beauty, and skincare products. These are produced in mass, cost less, and have a longer shelf life, a win-win for the manufacturer! The extensive use of synthetic chemicals in food, skincare, and the environment surrounding us is known to increase the risk of ill health.
Features of Organic Cosmetics.
Organic cosmetic products use naturally occurring substances and gentle preservatives. These provide natural effects and help you take good care of your skin and hair in the most natural form.
How to Spot Organic Cosmetics.
It is a common belief to accept a product as “natural” or “organic” because the front label reads “all-natural,” or the company has the word “organic” in its name.
We suggest reading the entire product label carefully. More information on product labels are here, and here. You will be surprised how quickly you can spot ingredients, preservatives, and sourcing of the ingredients, just by reading the entire label. Reading the product label takes less than a minute and worth it. Make an effort.
Organic cosmetics generally use natural oils, butter, fragrances, and food-grade preservatives. Organic ingredients are marked with asterisks (*) symbol and explained as “Organic” or “USDA Certified Organic” at the end of the ingredients section. The products that have a single ingredient may carry a “Certified Organic,” “USDA Certified Organic,” or similar certification. Finally, the website of the manufacturer has additional information on their products, ingredients, sourcing methods.
Organic Cosmetic companies may use Cruelty-Free, or No Animal Testing policy, Vegan contents, ethical sourcing of their materials, and avoid harsh chemicals in their products.
Your Contribution to Nature.
When you purchase organic cosmetic products, you contribute to preserving natural cultivation, ethical farming, and responsible sourcing. As the demand for organic products grows, such contributions have a significant impact on conserving nature. There is nothing better than leaving beautiful earth for our generations!
Organic living is more than eating something that is labeled “organic” in some way. Adapting to a natural lifestyle and its principles helps you live better and conserve nature. Organic cosmetics reduce harmful impact on you and the environment by using naturally occurring substances and preservatives.
How do you feel after reading through this brief discussion? Let us know. We hope that you found this post informative and useful.
Disclaimer-This website and content, comment, writing, or authors/contributors/writers do not provide or suggest medical, legal, or professional advice, opinion, or service. The information shared on this website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Great looking skin requires commitment and dedication; it is not a miracle. Genetic composition plays a role only to a certain extent. What is so special about the skin and you? What is a skincare routine? Excited to find out more?
We discuss basic aspects of keeping your skin happy, healthy, and satisfying. Happy reading!
Skincare is a unique part of caring for our bodies. A healthy diet provides the necessary tools to nourish the skin through the bloodstream. But, the rest depends on your ability to develop a dedicated skincare routine. How do you define a skincare routine? Before answering this question, we must know a bit more about our skin type.
Assessing your skin type
What is skin type?
The skin is generally defined as normal, dry, oily, and combination type. Skin tone has no major relation to skin cleansing.
Feels little stretched, dry or oily
Feels tight and scaly
Thin, shiny oily layer, clogged pores
Some dry and some oily areas
Dry skin is prone to early wrinkle development. Oily skin is resistant to wrinkles and sagging as the oils provide a natural moisturizing effect. Oils help connective tissue between skin cells stay healthy.
What about “sensitive skin”?
There is no standard description of sensitive skin. But, the skin is sensitive when irritation or inflammation of the skin occurs by using a product, environmental exposure. Sensitive skin is particularly challenging to care for. It may take some time and a detailed observation for you to find out if you are allergic to a particular product or one of the ingredients.
The most common cause of skin irritation is chemicals, colors, dyes, and fragrances added for improving a product’s appearance. Synthetic preservatives, phthalates, sulfates, urea, and others cause skin irritation. One may have to opt for non-irritating formulas when choosing cosmetic products. Example here.
How to test for sensitive skin?
A patch test on your inner forearm is a simple method to test your skin’s sensitivity to a new product. If no reaction noted in 24 hours, it is wiser to apply the product behind one of the ears and check further in 24 hours. If no reaction occurs, it is safe to use the product. Avoid confusion by testing one product at a time.
The skin and you- periodic assessment
Skin’s interaction with skincare and cosmetic products is dynamic. Sensitivity may develop over time and present weeks to months after you start using a product. Make a detailed observation of how your skin feels and appears when changing brands, product categories, or even newer versions of your all-time favorite product!
Why do I need a skincare routine?
Basic Skincare Routine:
Your skin will remain plump and glowing longer with a dedicated skincare routine. Taking good care of your skin will delay the appearance of wrinkles, uneven tone, and other skin issues. Also, a beauty routine allows you to watch your skin daily and pick up issues earlier. Prevention is better (and cheaper!) than cure; prompt attention to a skin problem will save you money and hassle in the long run.
Benefits of skincare routine
Are you determined to take care of your skin? A dedicated skincare routine provides counteraction to various harmful factors affecting your skin. This balancing act is important to maintain youthful skin. A complete skincare routine will achieve passive exfoliation, resurfacing, rejuvenation, and moisturizing.
Great looking skin is the easiest way to boost your confidence, all year round. Remember those compliments from friends and others to you well hydrated, well-rested, supple skin?
Steps for fundamental skincare
Skincare’s goal is to tune up the skin’s complexion and appearance, and extra details to areas needing more work.
Develop a habit.
Keep the routine simple. Add twists to adapt to changes in your lifestyle and seasons. Follow the routine daily. In the end, our skin will reward you!
Cleansing the skin.
It is the washing of your skin. A good cleanse removes dirt, and chemicals without harming the skin’s structure, moisture, or friendly oils. Cleansing the skin twice a day, particularly the exposed areas are essential to avoid clogged pores and uneven tone. The choice of cleanser depends on your skin type.
Be generous with water. Do not rub hard with a towel. Use a fresh washcloth made of cotton and pat dry the skin. Spend a few minutes observing your skin as it dries completely. You will be able to pick up issues early if you are observing daily.
A face wash should leave your skin just clean with slight hydration. Your skin should feel just a bit dry but not super dry. If excessive dryness occurs, reduce the amount of product.
After a thorough cleansing, the skin should be nourished with nutrients and moisturized to remain soft and plump.
After a thorough cleansing, the skin will need replenishment to recover and repair. This is achieved with skin toning. A skin toner refers to specific nutrients that are delivered into the skin for better absorption. Several agents are listed below.
Type of toner
Removes dead cells.
Deep moisturizer helps with fine wrinkles.
Vitamin C & E
Protects against damaging factors.
Evens out skin surface while moisturizing.
Skin serum and more
Like skin toners, skin serums deliver dedicated agents directly into the skin that fights irritation, inflammation, and dryness. The table below lists several agents.
Cells of the outermost layer of the skin tackle exposure to pollution, dirt, and excessive sun exposure. Also, these cells cope with atmospheric and temperature changes. A moisturizer provides hydration to these cells and keeps them soft. A moisturizer also helps keep friendly oils and tissue network that keeps the skin cells together. A lotion is commonly used as a moisturizer.
Our skin cells lose the ability to keep moisture as they age. The ability of our skin to retain moisture reduces as we age. This is true for all skin types. So, we recommend a moisturizer for year-round use. A moisturizer such as Hyaluronic acid provides a deep moisturizing effect. Deep moisturizer is particularly helpful if daily activities and excessive washing create dry skin.
According to U.S FDA, fragrance imparts odor to a product. In reality, fragrance results in attraction and plays a significant role in the marketing of a cosmetic product. Natural fragrances are derived from the essential oils and used in small quantities to provide aroma to a cosmetic product.
How to check for fragrance in a cosmetic product?
Manufacturers are not required to disclose details of the fragrance (type, natural or synthetic). Some manufacturers list the exact substance used as a fragrance while others label “Parfum/perfume” or “Fragrance”. Take care while reading the ingredients to identify potential allergens. The back panel label of the product lists all ingredients including fragrance.
The back panel label of this body lotion clearly mentions all of its ingredients.
The truth about “unscented” products.
Many cosmetic products are labeled “unscented” or “hypoallergic”. A common belief is that such products do not contain any fragrance or perfume in it and are safe for use in people with allergies to fragrance. But, these products often contain a small amount of fragrance (a.k.a. masking fragrance) to hide the unpleasant smell of other ingredients. Be sure to read the ingredients and perform a patch test before using such products.
Less is more.
Cosmetic companies often label an all-in-one solution to promote a single product. However, one is satisfied if a product is tailored to one’s skin type. Consider using a product with a relatively small amount of ingredients to minimize irritation. Choosing a product with a single main ingredient is often more effective!
The Power of Patience and observation.
Once you start using a product, it takes time for your skin to change its appearance. The time frame varies anywhere between two to eight weeks. Observe changes and compare them with photos taken before starting the product and every week. This is the best way to test the effect of a product on your skin.
In summary, a well-treated (rather pampered!) skin will offer a great reward. One must be patient but it pays off!
What do you think? How do you practice your skincare routine? What are your favorite products? Feel free to leave a comment below. We hope that you found this blog post informative and useful. We encourage you to routinely visit our blog and share it with your family and friends.
Disclaimer- This website and any of its content, comment, writing, or authors/contributors/writers do not provide or suggest medical, legal, or professional advice, opinion, or service. The information shared on this website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
* The skin has three main layers. The outermost layer is the epidermis. It has many layers of cells with the oldest cells on the outside and the youngest cells on the inside. The epidermis also provides a dry, waterproof barrier.
* The second layer is the dermis. The dermis has connective tissues, hair follicles, and sweat glands.
* The third layer is the hypodermis or subcutaneous tissue. The hypodermis has fat cells, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The nerve endings also live in this layer.
Underneath these layers lays the muscle of the skin. The muscle causes movements of the skin such as shivering and feeling of tense skin during cold weather.
Skin Facts and Fun
1) The skin is the largest organ of our body.
2) The skin covers about 2 square meter area of our body on an average.
3) It has more than 250 million cells.
4) It weighs 10 lbs. and has more than 10 miles of blood vessels.
5) The skin varies in thickness. The thinnest skin (0.2 mm) is present on the eyelid and thickest on the feet (1.5 mm). But, repeated friction increases the skin’s thickness by forming a “callus”.
6) The skin sheds the outermost cells (about 40,000 old or dead skin cells every minute). Our skin renews itself completely every 30 days.
7) The skin’s pH is acidic, ranging from 4.5 to 5.5. This acidity helps our skin fight against many dangerous pathogens.
8) Our skin is home to more than 1,000 kinds of microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses.
9) Any breakage of the skin heals with dense, fiber-like tissue (fibrous tissue) called a scar.
10) Skin represents your health, dietary pattern, and mental status. Read further on diet and skin health below.
Factors affecting the skin
Our skin receives nutrition through the bloodstream. The skin needs sunlight to make Vitamin D. Several factors affect our skin health.
The table below simplifies it.
Factors Affecting Skin Health
Effect on the skin
Lowers skin moisture
Change in hormone & oil production
High fat, low fiber diet
Excessive sugar in the diet
Increased acne and eczema
Vitamin C, Omega-3 Fatty Acid in the diet
Increased Collagen, and smooth, shiny skin
Effect on the skin
Sunlight exposure (10-30 minutes/day)
Vitamin D production
Excessive sun exposure
Sunburns, cancer, and radiation damage
Dryness, irritation, inflammation, cancer
Scar formation, Callus (thick skin)
A touch on diet and the skin
Our body shows pretty much what we eat.
A healthy diet helps the skin fight aging. Vitamin C, Omega 3- fatty acids, Zinc, and Vitamin E are well known for skin nourishment.
Skin Facts- Skin friendly foods!
But, a diet rich in trans fats, sugar and decreased activity adds oxidative stress on the skin. This stress makes the skin age faster and causes wrinkles early.
Skin Facts-Yum but not so good for the skin!
Stress, anxiety, and lack of sleep affect skin health by reducing moisture and causing dryness, wrinkling and sagging.
Myths about the skin
Now we know a bit about the structure of the skin, its functions, and its favorite nutrients.
We also learned what factors affect our skin in good and bad ways.
Let’s look at several myths about skin and skincare treatments.
1) Creams claiming anti-aging substances can keep the skin looking young.
Our markets are filled with thousands of products claiming various anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-aging capabilities.
The cost of the product is driven by the brand name, marketing, and appearance of the product.
Most of such claims are untested, unproven and has no scientific data behind them.
2) Cleaning the skin with antibacterial soap is better than regular soap.
The skin is home to many microorganisms, including bacteria and viruses.
Many of these creatures are useful and take part in skins’ function.
Some of these microorganisms even protect us from other harmful bugs.
It is not possible to keep the skin completely free of bacteria or other organisms; it is not necessary.
Keeping your skin clean with regular soap is just fine.
Good and frequent hand washing prevents most infections.
3) Hot water provides better skin cleanse.
We feel great while taking a hot bath, don’t we?
Actually, hot water will strip the skin of its natural protectants (such as oil) and leave your skin very dry.
If your skin looks red after a wash, the water was too hot. Simple.
Skin Facts- Use lukewarm water for cleaning the skin.
4) Rubbing hard with a scrub means better exfoliation.
Ideal exfoliation removes the most superficial layer of the skin.
Hard and repeated rubbing of any type of scrub will injure the younger, budding cells.
The young skin cells give you that great look but you end up damaging them by friction!
The best exfoliation is the gentle one.
5)The price tag of a product speaks for its quality.
The brand name, aggressive marketing, and popularity drive the cost of a product.
Remember that gorgeous looking bottle with a shiny label claiming the ultimate cure?
You do. Remember its price tag of $130 for 0.5 Oz product?
A good cosmetic product is driven by the quality of its ingredients and how it helps reach your goals without causing harm.
Now, there is a price tag to this achievement and there is a reasonable method to assess the quality of a cosmetic product without having to use it.
A proper understanding of the label of the product is essential to identify a good product.
6) If a product is labeled “natural” or “chemical-free”, it must be good for me.
First of all, one needs to determine if you are allergic to any ingredient listed on a cosmetic product.
Natural or not, allergic reactions can be serious and therefore carefully read the back panel for a list of ingredients.
A label claiming chemical-free has a vast definition (or lack of thereof) and does not exclude chemicals introduced in its base ingredients.
Improperly preserved, “natural” products can promote bacterial growth. As a result, it may cause problems for you.
In general, reading the label thoroughly helps you understand the content and quality. It also helps you set your expectations out of using the product.
Make sure to thoroughly read the label on the backside of the product. Why?
Because it is the most important source of this information!
Read more about how to analyze a product label here.
Last but not least, we want to discuss several terms used in the cosmetic and skincare world and their meaning.
* Acidic- normal skin pH ranges between 4.5-5.5. The neutral pH is 7. Any number lower than 7 is acidic. What is pH?
* Alkaline- any pH number greater than 7 is Alkaline.
* Anti-oxidant- a substance that reduces free-radical damage. In reality, most cosmetic products claiming to be “anti-oxidant” are not proven by scientific means. Avoid such marketing words while evaluating a product.
* Emollient- a substance that increases water levels in the skin, also known as a moisturizer. An example here.
* Essential oil- an oily substance extracted from the plant while preserving its fragrance.
* Flavonoids- substances found in pigmented fruits, vegetables, nuts, and the seeds. Some claim they possess anti-oxidant properties.
* Fibroblast- a cell responsible for collagen production and keeps the skin plump.
* Fragrance- a natural or chemically produced compound used as a scent.
* Free radicals- substances generated in our body by excessive sunlight, smoking, pollution, and unhealthy diet causing skin damage.
* Fruit enzymes- mild substances derived from fruit for gentle exfoliation by breaking down keratin of the skin. An example here.
* Humectant- a moisturizer.
* Gel- a thin, pasty substance/product. An example here.
* Lotion- a thin product made with water, oils, and butter for application on the skin for moisturizing, and improving dryness. An example here.
* Cream- thicker product compared to lotion, particularly for very dry skin. An example here.
* Body butter-Shea or other butter for dry skin, and areas with naturally thick skin (palm of hands, sole of feet). An example here.
* Toner- a product claiming to improve skin tone and texture. They come in all forms- creams, serum, oils, lotions, and gels!
* Hair oil- various oil preparations used to promote hair health and growth. An example here.
In summary, our skin is a showcase of our body and taking good care of our skin is essential for well being.
We hope that you found this blog post informative and useful. Don’t forget to routinely visit our blog and share it with your family and friends. Feel free to leave a comment below!
Disclaimer- This website and any of its content, comment, writing or authors/contributors/writers do not provide or suggest a medical, legal or professional advice, opinion or service. The information shared on this website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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