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Low Carbon: 1 Striking Change in Beauty world.

Bamboo Forest

Low Carbon: 1 Striking Change in Beauty World.

Bamboo Forest

We discussed low carbon energy resources, carbon footprint, greenhouse gas emissions, and nature’s impact in our previous post- Conserving nature: Kusum’s pledge. We also discussed easy steps you can take to reduce your carbon footprint without spending hours trying to figure out complex calculations.

Most biological activities, human, animal, microbiological, or plant-generated, result in carbon production. Human activity, particularly manufacturing, transportation, heat, and electricity generation, contributes to most carbon production.1

Low Carbon Energy

Today’s post aims to explain our core business principles and help other businesses take action to reduce their carbon footprint.

1)Lovely for the skin. Good for nature.


Kusum’s ingredients fundamentally support nature conservation. Read more about it here. The points discussed here are in addition to the uniqueness of our products.

2) Location.


Kusum’s location is strategically selected to reduce sourcing, manufacturing, warehousing, and distribution-related resource utilization. Our unique proximity to population, port, cultivation, and talent allows us to drastically reduce carbon emissions related to our day-to-day operations.

San Francisco Bay

For example, we purchase locally cultivated ingredients as much as possible. Our employees live close to their respective job sites, many of them within walking distance, allowing them to work without driving. Air shipping produces a significant amount of carbon dioxide. The port within a few miles from us enables us to utilize ground/ocean shipping as much as possible.

3) Clean energy. Strategic utilization.

Industry

Kusum operates to optimize energy utilization during off-peak hours. This step reduces energy generation and distribution-related loss. Kusum’s operations use solar power whenever possible. Starting 2022, Kusum will use wind-generated electricity for the rest of the energy needs resulting in 100% electricity from green resources.

4) Energy efficient operation.

In addition to using energy-efficient, energy-star products, Kusum’s operations use natural sunlight and LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs for lighting and induction heating elements for improved heat conduction. Our low voltage, direct current equipment reduces voltage regulation-related energy loss.

5) Enhanced supplier selection.

Kusum’s suppliers share the same business ethics and support nature conservation, using cleaner energy resources, reducing waste, and promoting recycling.

6) Demand oriented manufacturing.

Low carbon production best occurs when the production amount is just as much as the demand. We adhere to demand-oriented manufacturing to reduce excessive energy spent transporting and storing supplies and finished products. It is common in the beauty industry to deeply discount leftover inventory (causing overutilization) or throw away excess inventory (inefficient resource utilization). Our unique business practice of demand-oriented manufacturing minimizes the waste of finished products.

7) Maintaining Product consistency.

Creating products with consistent results over continued, long-term use is vital to healthy skincare. The beauty industry often confuses consumers by creating new products, new packaging, and adding tweaks to existing products to create a market attraction. Such business practice is more prevalent than perceived and, unfortunately, leads to increased production, resource utilization, leftover inventory, and waste.

Gift Box

For example, new holiday baskets every year, where do the leftover ones go?

8) Improved packaging, reduced packaging.

Kusum’s products utilized glass, recyclable PET and aluminum containers, and recyclable dip tubes. Kusum’s primary packaging is sturdy enough to withstand the shipping process; this allows us to use less shipping material. The overall packaging design and clear instructions keep recycling as simple and effective as possible.

9) Hailing natural beauty while supporting a good cause.

Low Carbon Resources 101

Kusum Cosmetics has partnered with Green America to help create a socially and environmentally sustainable society.

10) Clean beauty with clean air.

Green Forest

At Kusum Cosmetics, the clean beauty concept goes beyond creating and promoting sustainable products. We encourage the cultivation and preservation of one of the valuable natural resources- the trees.

Why trees?

Trees help reduce land erosion and sudden shifting with the forces of nature. Trees help remove carbon dioxide to store carbon within their structures. Trees provide a home to countless living creatures. Trees offer shade shelter and add biodiversity to our planet. Trees help capture rainwater and reduce flooding. Kusum Cosmetics has partnered with One Tree Planted, a nonprofit organization that plants trees in six regions of 42 countries. In 2021, the One Tree Planted organization planted 23 million trees on over 86,000 acres2. Planting and cultivating trees in their natural habitats helps us reduce our carbon footprint and low carbon energy utilization.

How do you feel after reading through this brief discussion? Let us know.
We hope that you found this post informative and valuable. Feel free to share our beauty pearls with others. Use this link- kusumcosmetics.com/blog/

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.

Reference:
1) https://www.nature.org/en-us/get-involved/how-to-help/carbon-footprint-calculator/
2) https://onetreeplanted.org/pages/2021-recap

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The Best Untold Story of Shelf Life: Part 1.

The Untold Story of Shelf Life

It is usually a sensational experience to stroll through the beauty products section of a supermarket. One can see well-stocked shelves full of eye-popping colors and containers of all sizes and shapes. The products are made in bulk and stored in a warehouse to ensure the supply meets the demand. This waiting period is called shelf life. Product preservation ensures the products maintain their intended form and effectiveness while awaiting a buyer.

Cream

A simple explanation of shelf life is the amount of time a product remains usable in a sealed (unopened) form. Virtually every product has some shelf life. Beauty products are no exception.

The shelf life depends mainly on its ingredients, container design, storage conditions, and use. Advances in manufacturing and storage, chemistry, engineering, and our ability to synthesize resistant structures have improved the shelf lives of most products.

Beauty and cosmetic products can have a shelf life of three years or more. In general, products made with synthetic chemicals and a higher amount and number of preservatives would have a longer shelf life. If you are reading this, we need not discuss such products and the impact of harsh chemicals and preservatives on the skin and the environment!

What is the shelf life of organic beauty products? Many people ask. Is a product with longer shelf life better? Do some people wonder why the shelf life of beauty products with a higher amount of natural and organic ingredients is shorter?

Let’s delve into the basics.

Yogurt

Organic means produce grown without chemically formulated fertilizers, growth stimulators, antimicrobials, or similar compounds. Organic produce is grown on soil that is unexposed to prohibited materials for at least three years.

Well, how does being organic or natural change shelf life? Not much. If a product is made with organic or biological substances and contains synthetic stabilizers and strong preservatives, it can have longer shelf life while preserving the “organic” or “natural” label.

A simple example would be apples treated with a resistant coat vs. apples treated without any such treatment. The apples treated with synthetic antimicrobial and coated with wax or similar material will resist forces of nature and stay fresh for a more extended period. However, apples treated without any such treatment would easily get spoiled once plucked.

With this understanding, let’s explore further. What is the ideal shelf life of a beauty product?

Thrive Body Massage 2

Oils, being fatty acids, are naturally resistant to spoilage and microbial growth and typically last two to three years. Once water or water-containing ingredients are added (typically in creams and lotions), the shelf life reduces drastically. Preservatives are generally required for water and water-containing products to minimize microbial growth.

Alcohol is the most common preservative used in beauty products. Alcohol is readily available, cost-effective, and has broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity. Alcohol is the most common cause of skin irritation from the use of beauty products.

Salt, Citric acid, and Potassium Sorbate are food-grade preservatives used for centuries to preserve water-containing products. Newer, bio-based preservatives have revolutionized our ability to protect beauty products without adding harsh chemicals.

What happens after a beauty product is opened?

Microbial contamination occurs once a product is exposed to air or fingers or applicators get into it. Also, the oxidation process starts, and the effectiveness of ingredients starts to change. Using a product within 30 to 45 days of opening generally provides the most intended benefit.

Glow Face Massage 2

Let’s reverse the course. Is a product with one-year shelf life more effective than a product with a three-year shelf life?

It depends upon the ingredients. As we discussed above, if a product is 100% oil, it might remain effective for two to three years.

How can I quickly access the quality of beauty and cosmetic products?

The front label of a product, also known as the principal display panel is the most visible part of a beauty product’s packaging. We recommend reading and understanding the ingredient label on the side or back panel regardless of the print on the front label. Some products may have one or two ingredients derived from nature, thus claiming it to be natural and the rest of the ingredients being harsh chemicals and strong preservatives.

Another commonly seen labeling practice is to mention an attractive element on the front panel (such as “made with real almond oil”) where the advertised ingredient is relatively tiny. A prospective buyer may easily misunderstand the product as natural and containing a significant amount of advertised ingredients.

While there are regulations to protect the buyer, buyers should do their due diligence and ensure they fully understand what they intend to use, including product ingredients; this is the easiest way to ensure you get the product you intend to purchase.

A simple example would be reading the label of a shower gel. Are you getting natural soap or just a mixture of foaming agents?

Many foaming agents (also known as surfactants) are naturally derived, but too much foam can strip the skin of its friendly oils. Is it made of high-quality oil (such as organic Olive oil) or a mixture of different oils if you are getting natural soap? The ingredient declaration label provides such vital information. Have you felt dry and itchy skin after a shower? Time to read the ingredient label of your favorite shower product!

In summary, the shelf life of a beauty product depends upon its ingredients and type and number of preservatives used, container design, storage conditions, and method of use. Alcohol and other harsh chemical preservatives help achieve a longer shelf life while causing skin irritation, dryness, and itching. Well-known food-grade preservatives such as salt, citric acid, and potassium sorbate and newer bio-based preservatives effectively replace harsh chemical preservatives. Oil products generally have a longer shelf life, even without any preservatives. Reading and understanding a product’s ingredients label provides excellent insight into reality.

Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surfactant

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.

Shelf Life

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How to keep hair healthy? 3 step simple solution.

how to keep hair healthy

Hair appearance is adjustable to suit our expression. Haircare is not time-consuming; it does not have to be. So how to keep hair healthy? We discussed hair in great detail in our post “Hair: Interesting Medley.” This post summarizes top tips and few insights.

how to keep hair healthy

An average person sheds about 100 hair every day. Several factors such as lack of sleep, proper diet, infection, illness, and stress can cause more hair to fall out. Can hair loss be restored? What is a good hair care routine? How to establish the right and sustainable hair care routine? These questions apply equally to men and women and we discuss a simple solution in three steps. Let’s explore!

A simple haircare routine:

1) Cleansing- A gentle cleanser would remove dirt, grime, pollutants, and dead skin without changing scalp pH or stripping the natural oils. We suggest a pH-balanced, natural hair bath and rub the scalp gently to remove the dirt and depositions.

2) Moisturizing/conditioning-One expects hair tangling after a hair wash as some loss of hair’s natural oil. A hair conditioner would restore the vital oils, allow detangling of hair and promote shine. A natural, pH-balanced hair conditioner would restore the scalp and hair’s natural oils without altering the chemical balance.

3) Oil/Serum application- a combination of hair oils and serum restores the scalp’s natural balance. Hair oil and serum kept overnight followed by hair cleansing and conditioning work the best. One may warm up the oil with gentle rubbing on the palm of the hand and rub gently onto the scalp. Hair Nourisher is a gentle fusion of organic hair and scalp friendly oils.

Natural oils can help strengthen hair follicles and help fight against common causes of hair loss. The oils nourish the scalp and hair follicle and support the hair strand fight against environmental factors. Several oils are known for centuries to protect hair and promote hair growth.

bhringraj

Bhringraj (common name-false daisy, INCI name-Eclipta prostata) is a member of the sunflower family. Bhringraj is known for hair-friendly properties for centuries.

1) Bhringraj is rich in vitamin E, and higher specific gravity allowing for better contact with the scalp.
2) Reduces scalp itching by reducing dandruff and dry scalp.
3) Improves blood flow to the scalp and thus reduces hair loss and promotes hair growth. One research in 2008 reported significant hair growth and reduced time to hair growth by the direct application of Bhringraj. The results were superior to Minoxidil’s direct application, a medicine commonly used to treat hair loss.
4) Reduces split ends of hair and increases shine.
5) Washes away easily for quick hair cleansing.

In addition to the above scalp and hair care routine, the role of good sleep, diet, and stress reduction are vital. Changing one’s lifestyle to suit organic living promotes hair health. Diet has an important role in maintaining the good health of our hair and skin. You can read more about the diet in our recent post- Does diet affect my skin?

Quick Recap:

  • The pH of the scalp ranges from 3.5 to 5.0.
  • Effective hair care principles- Cleansing, Conditioning, and Moisturizing.
  • Use natural hair care products to minimize damage and delay greying of hair.
  • Eat healthily, sleep well, and work on reducing stress.

If you are interested in reading more about hair, its composition, benefits, facts on hair growth, hair health, hair color, and ways to optimize hair health, we encourage you to read our post- hair: interesting medley.

A simple skincare routine comprising organic skincare is featured on Saas Magazine is found here.

We hope that you found this post informative and useful. Feel free to share our blog with others. Use this link- https://kusumcosmetics.com/blog.

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.

How to keep hair healthy

how to keep hair healthy? 3 step solution.

How to keep hair healthy

How to keep hair healthy

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Nurturing For Better Tomorrow : Part 1

Nurturing For Better Tomorrow

Introduction: Nurturing For Better Tomorrow.

Conservation efforts for our planet and its natural habitat are dating back to the late 1800s [1]. Simply put, this is a push towards utilizing natural resources in a manner that does not alter, spoil, or deplete.

Human endeavors to create a habitable world have impacted our planet with detrimental effects. Increased transportation and materials use led to the rapid destruction of forests, climate change, seawater, and marine environmental change.

Increased use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), chemicals to change color, taste, and consistency of cosmetics, makeup products, shower products, and food has increased the risk of various diseases in humans, including cancer. The use of potent chemicals to preserve food, cosmetics, and shower products causes multiple skin issues.

This series of blog posts focus on core values of natural conservation, ethical sourcing of supplies, sustainable manufacturing, responsible consumption, and post-consumption recycling.

We will also discuss simple ways to identify products sustainably made with natural resources. We will share tips on manufacturers’ efforts on reducing waste while providing quality products.

Consumer Conservation Ethic

All living creatures of this planet are a consumer of some sort. Those living in the developed and developing parts of the earth consume the most resources available to us. A well-informed consumer should utilize available resources with conservation in mind.

Former US president Theodor Roosevelt initiated a conservation ethic in the United States.

“The conservation of natural resources is the fundamental problem. Unless we solve that problem, it will avail us little to solve all others.”

– Theodor Roosevelt [2]

Use nature-derived products, conserve for a better tomorrow!

The “R” for Restoration.

Four “R” s express consumer conservation ethics: “Rethink, Reduce, Recycle, Repair.” [1] Several measures such as moral purchasing, ethical purchasing, sustainable and renewable resources, and preventing harm to air, soil, and water quality forms the basis of consumer conservation ethics.

Rethink

A recent biodiversity study with data from 2011 to 2020 published in Science magazine [3] demonstrated some increase in protected land and marine areas globally. Still, the resources to these areas remain low and increased social pressure. The scientists and conservationists propose various models to improve conservations using goal-based methods for 2021 to 2030 [4].

It is clear that assigning a piece of land or water as a protected area does not reduce human activity’s impact on natural resources. It is our responsibility to think of multi-faceted ideas to aid the sensible consumption of available resources. How do we do that?

A visual attraction forms the basis of modern marketing, whether online or in stores. Do you recollect stores offering virtual experience, in-room experience from appliances to shoes? This method is referred to as “visual merchandising” and has a significant impact on various products’ sales. [5]

Time to apply this science and “Rethink.” We buy numerous products packaged in shiny, attractive boxes and wraps. But, the box and the “protective wrap” go straight to the trashcan. No need to juggle, all of us have done it frequently! Even worse, how much of that thin plastic is recyclable?

Choose products that help reduce waste. It isn’t hard!

If a product were available without unnecessary boxes and wraps, you would prevent so much waste! Modern transportation can deliver products without excessive use of resources.

At Kusum Cosmetics, we promote conservation by reducing unnecessary packaging and creating efficient transportation methods to reduce waste. Instead of using attractive boxes and wraps, we choose to connect our clients by staying transparent on our bottling! More on labels and packaging here.

Reduce

Reducing the use of material that is not recyclable or biodegradable effectively practices natural conservation. Many cosmetic products use synthetic materials, chemically formulated pesticides, preservatives, acids, artificial colors, and fragrances.

Synthetic material is hard to change by natural methods and much cheaper when produced in bulk. Using such materials translates into increased shelf life and thus more profit for someone. However, these benefits come at the cost of ill effects on you and your loved ones’ skin and health.

Let everyone enjoy nature in its purest form!

Pillars of nature created Kusum Cosmetics. We promote naturally derived ingredients in their purest form and minimize the use of non-biodegradable materials. Our bottling material is recyclable, and we use naturally derived organic ingredients and preservatives. You can participate in nature conservation by replacing products made with natural ingredients. When used sensibly, natural ingredients are healthy, bio-friendly, and harmless to other components of nature.

Recycle

Recycling produces new material from processing waste material. This concept is not new; it has been a common practice for most human history [6] Industrial revolution has opened the avenue to effectively recycling various materials. Consumer participation on an individual level is vital for any recycling program to remain effective.

In other words, we, the consumers, must thoughtfully separate recyclable material and deposit according to local standards to support recycling programs. Many countries, states, and cities have adopted legislation that minimizes non-recyclable materials and promotes ways to increase recyclable material deposition. Trash collection agencies in various parts of the world provide labeled containers for organic waste (going to farmland as fertilizer), recyclable waste (going to recycling plant), and remaining waste (going for landfill/other disposition).

Recycling. Simple, easy, and effective.

Kusum Cosmetics participates in recycling by choosing suppliers that intend to use recyclable packaging and employing nearly 100% post-consumer recyclable materials for product packaging.

Repair

Think of gluing a torn paper! Plan to use our bottles in creative ways for as long as you can! This concept helps reduce strain on the ecosystem by reusing the same material in various ways to maximize efficiency. Consider reusing an empty bottle of shower gel by filling it with natural hand soap!

Best from Waste. Torn glove, used tape, discarded ribbon. Repaired with love!

How do you feel after reading through this brief discussion? Let us know. We hope that you found this post informative and useful. You can read Part 2 of this blog post here.

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.

Reference:

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nature_conservation

[2] Leopold, A. (1966) A Sand County Almanac New York: Oxford University Press.

[3] Visconti P, Butchart SM, Brooks TM et al. Protected area targets post-2020. Science. Vol 364, Issue 6437, pp.239-241.

[4] Rethinking Conservation efforts for improved biodiversity. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/04/190411145110.htm

[5] https://www.orderhive.com/visual-merchandising-affect-store-sales

[6] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recycling

Nurturing For Better Tomorrow.

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Organic Cosmetics

organic cosmetics

Key Insights

  • “Organic” Explained.
  • Organic Lifestyle.
  • The Case for Organic Cosmetics.
  • Features of Organic Cosmetics.
  • How to Spot Organic Cosmetics.
  • Your Contribution to nature.
  • Summary.

What is Organic Meaning?

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

Chic Hair Bath

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.

Green Scrub

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.

Serene Face Cleanser

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!

Summary

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.

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The Skin and You.

The Skin and You

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!

Key Insights
> Assessing your skin type> Skincare products- What, when, and why?
> Why do I need a skincare routine?> Fragrance in cosmetics
> Steps for fundamental skincare> Power of patience and observation
> Skincare routine flashcard> Suggested reading
Skincare routine

Dedicated skincare routine pays off big time!

Our skin is a complex organ. It needs tender loving care from inside and out. Read more about skin facts, fun, myths, and more in our recent blog post.

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.

Skin typeFeeling
Normal skinFeels little stretched, dry or oily
Dry skinFeels tight and scaly
Oily skinThin, shiny oily layer, clogged pores
Combination skinSome 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?

The skin and you skin cleansing

Basic Skincare Routine:

  1. Cleansing
  2. Complexion Balance
  3. Moisturizing

            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. 

Skin typeCleansing productMechanism of action
Normal skinNon-irritating face wash or Micellar waterThe mild foaming action helps remove dirt and particles. Micellar water soaks up dirt and oil without dryness. This is a soap-free option but check the ingredients for unwanted chemicals. 
Combination skinFace wash and oilFace wash for oily areas.Oil for dry areas.
Dry skinNon-irritating face wash, Cream or lotionChoose a product with an emollient to provide extra moisture.
Oily skinSoapface washDeep binding of oil particles along with debris.
Serene Face Wash Front

A pH neutral, non-irritating face wash is suitable for all skin types. USDA Certified organic ingredients provide natural cleansing.

            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.

            Complexion balance

Well pampered skin

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 tonerFunction
Alpha-lipoic acidRemoves dead cells.
Hyaluronic acidDeep moisturizer helps with fine wrinkles.
Vitamin C & EProtects against damaging factors.
Aloe veraEvens 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.

SerumFunction
Hyaluronic acidIt provides hydration, prevents skin cracking.
Stem cell formulationStimulates buddying skin cells.
Colloidal oatmealCalms irritated skin.

Pure Hyaluronic acid- Deep moisturizer.

Moisturizing the skin

            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.

Skin TypeMoisturizer to consider
Normal or CombinationLotion (balanced water and oil)
DryCream (Oil-based)
OilyGel (Water-based)
Excessive dry area, frequent washingDeep moisturizer
Daytime Kindle Body Lotion

A well-balanced body lotion.

What is the role of fragrance?

            What is a fragrance in cosmetics?

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.

Product Label

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.

            All-in-one products.

            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.

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Skin Facts, Fun, Myths and More!

Skin Facts
Skin Facts
Let’s learn about our skin today!

We want to talk about taking good care of our skin, the largest organ of our body! And, we will discuss skin facts, fun information, myths and more. Happy reading!

Don’t want to read the entire blog? Listen to our blog post on YouTube!

Key Insights
* Skin Layers and their importance* A touch on diet and the skin
* Interesting facts about our skin* Common factors affecting our skin
* Terminology for Cosmetic products* Suggested reading
  • Have you ever wondered how skin manages to protect our inside organs? 
  • How about protecting our skin from various external factors? What are these factors?

The ways of nature are wonderful. Let’s face a bit of a challenge and learn!

Why the skin exists?

The skin protects internal organs by providing a dry barrier.

Our skin protects against mechanical injury, heat and cold injury, microorganisms, radiation, and chemicals.

Skin Facts- Single Organ, Many Roles.

Our skin also regulates the temperature of our body by sweating.

It also responds to the temperature changes by changing the pattern of its blood flow.

Fine hair on the skin increases its sensitivity to fine touch.

The skin helps in making vitamin D. Nerves of the skin detect touch, heat and cold, and pain sensations.

The structure of the skin contains specialized cells called Melanocytes that are responsible for skin tone.

The versatility of Our Skin

How does our skin manage to perform so many functions? The answer resides in the layers of the skin!

Layers of the skin
Layers of human skin concept illustration

Image Courtesy: www.vecteezy.com

* 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.

Skin Facts- Sunlight helps the skin make Vitamin D.
Factors Affecting Skin Health
Internal factorsEffect on the skin
Inadequate sleepLowers skin moisture
Stress, anxietyChange in hormone & oil production
High fat, low fiber dietDecreased smoothness
Excessive sugar in the dietIncreased acne and eczema
Vitamin C, Omega-3 Fatty Acid in the dietIncreased Collagen, and smooth, shiny skin
External factors Effect on the skin
Sunlight exposure (10-30 minutes/day)Vitamin D production
Excessive sun exposureSunburns, cancer, and radiation damage
Chemical exposureDryness, irritation, inflammation, cancer
Repeated injury/frictionScar 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.

Healthy foods.

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.

Yum but not so good.

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.

The cosmetic industry is a $532 billion industry.

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.

Cosmetic Terminology

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.

* Body balm- a cream without water!

* Serum- a deep moisturizer. 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.

Suggested reading:

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.