I read recently that the average woman uses 12 personal care products a day containing a staggering 168 different chemicals. STOP! Look at the ingredients on the products in your beauty regime. If you don’t know what they are, or would not willingly eat them then perhaps you should stop putting them on your skin. Remember you skin is very effective at absorbing chemicals and transferring them to your bloodstream (think of nicotine patches and other medication that is routinely delivered through patches).
Cosmetic companies spend a fortune advertising all sorts of mad toxic chemically-derived concoctions to us in glossy magazines and on the TV. It’s time to take back control of our own skin!
Natural Beauty makes so much sense. Our skin is 100 per cent natural – why would we put toxic chemicals anywhere near it? Nourishing, soothing, honest and 100 per cent natural formulas are all we need to keep our skin in tip top condition.
Instead of ‘Types’ of skin which are commonly referred to in the mainstream cosmetic and skincare industry, in the Natural Beauty world we talk about ‘Conditions’ – a condition being a state that can improve and change. Whether you are aiming at maintaining your condition despite the increasing years or working to improve it, the natural beauty world has a lot to offer you.
One current focus in the Natural Beauty world is the Skin Microbiome. You will have heard of this concept in relation to Gut Health and Immune health but here we are talking about it in relation to skin conditions. Like the gut, the skin is home to over a trillion organisms at any given time, including thousands of species of bacteria as well as viruses and fungi. These all serve a purpose and are important for proper balance. Like the gut, when the balance is altered, it can create problems.
If you are keen to take care of your skin Microbiome you will want to use natural skincare products, as every harsh soap, deodorant, and antibacterial agent affects the bacteria on your skin, and many could be doing more harm than good.
For example, often the approach to Acne is to try and kill the bacteria that is seen as causing the acne. However recent theories are suggesting that we should we working on balancing the bacteria on our skin rather than wiping it out. So Dr Hauschka for example recommend a programme for Acne that involves a clay mask and a special Facial Oil rather than harsh cleansers and anti-bacterial spot creams. In Organico we would also always discuss diet, stress, exercise and a programme of supplements for a condition such as Acne, as a wholistic approach is essential if you want to achieve long terms results.
If you want to safeguard your family’s skin from a Microbiome perspective, my advice is stay simple and natural and you can’t go far wrong. I don’t have antibacterial hand soaps of shower gels in the house – we use natural bar soaps, which are far less wasteful of resources, very economical and the natural oils are beneficial for your skin. We use an Organic Aloe Gel to soothe burned or irritated skin; Neem Cream to prevent minor infections and Everything Balm from Trilogy for everything else!
Which leads me to another important Natural Beauty tenet, which is that beauty is much more than skin deep. In Organico we have always advocated aiming for beauty from within – moisturising your skin by taking omega oils, supporting cleansing by taking certain herbs. More recently a huge focus is on improving the structure and elasticity of our skin as we age. One of the most effective methods of improving these is by consuming Collagen, which is a natural protein that is hugely abundant in our bodies and has a particular affinity to our skin. Collagen is popping up everywhere in the natural health and beauty sector, in skin creams, supplements and even in Lattes (OK, the Collagen Lattes are mainly in the US, but still!).
Irish Natural Beauty brands are on the rise – we have a number of top class ranges in Organico. I’ve written recently about Your Beauty Tonic (a Collagen supplement that has many skin and joint benefits); and also about Dr Mahers Oils, which are incredibly deeply moisturising (they come from Kerry and contain natural oils and seaweed extracts). We are excited about the new Kinvara products – their 24 Hour Rosehip Serum is an old favourite at this stage (staff and customers alike love the golden glow it imparts) and their Moisturiser has always been popular. The new additions of a Hyaluronic Youth Boost gel (I’m using it instead of an Eye Cream at the moment) and a Cleansing Powder (you mix it with water yourself – it’s gentle but effective, very economical and needs no preservatives, happy days!) have been very well received. So if you’d like to add some natural Irish made cosmetics into your skincare regime just call in!
On a slight side note, but still skincare-related – in Organico we are all in love with the natural Deodorant Creams which are being made here in Ireland – the Warrior Botanical range is from down the road in Clonakilty and the products are made from completely natural ingredients (and are super effective), and recently we have started stocking a range called Pit Putty, also Irish and very similar to the Warrior, just with stronger scent. In fact we are reducing our range of other deodorant, as we feel strongly that all the hard plastic packaging of regular deodorants is unnecessary, we like the natural formulations and the creams work so well that it’s hard to see why you would need anything else. If you want to try them, pop in for a sample – you’ll never look back.