As the skin is the largest organ we have and that absorbs the applied products partially or fully into the bloodstream (up to 60%), it matters what we apply on it. Cosmetic products or makeup that contains a lot of irritants can cause side effects, as when the skin absorbs these ingredients that are found in the products, it deposits them right into our circulatory system. It has been found, for example, that women who use lipstick frequently end up consuming 1.5 to 4 tubes in a lifetime.
In this case, it is better to use products that don’t contain harmful ingredients as they’ll end up in our body anyway. However, the terms relating to natural and organic makeup products can be a little vague, so we’ll start by clarifying them. If you’re interested in switching to organic cosmetic products, keep reading to learn about how to choose such products as well as the benefits of using them.
1. Clarification of terms: natural, organic, plant-based, cruelty-free, vegan
These terms are somewhat confusing and in order to choose the best one, you should know what each term means and encompasses.
We’ll start with the term ‘natural’. This term isn’t regulated at all. Many companies use this word on the label, and it means different things for each company. That’s why not everything with the word ‘natural’ on the label is indeed natural. In this case, it’s best to check out the listed ingredients. Remember that ingredients are always listed from the ones in the highest percentages to the lowest. So, obviously, opt for one that doesn’t contain (any or a little amount of) synthetic ingredients. Have in mind that some natural ingredients have rather scientific names, making them sound like they’re synthetic, so do your research.
This term means that all the ingredients contained in a product are organically farmed and regulated by the FDA. The label can say ‘made with organic ingredients when the product contains at least 70% of them. However, a USDA organic seal means that the product contains at least 95% of organic ingredients.
In theory, a product that’s marked in this way, shouldn’t contain any man-made ingredients, only naturally occurring ones. It indicates that the product is made from botanical ingredients. Nevertheless, a product can still be plant-based and not organic.
The Leaping Bunny certification is often found on cruelty-free products, indicating that the product wasn’t tested on animals. Europe has banned testing on animals as well as some states in the USA, while China is obliged to test the products on animals, according to their law.
A cosmetic product labeled in this way means that it doesn’t contain any animal by-products whatsoever. Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that it can’t contain any synthetic ingredients, so make sure to read the list of ingredients.
2. How to distinguish organic cosmetic products
Now that you are aware of the differences between different labels, it’s time to shop for the right products. Again, there are some things to consider before buying a certain product. Let’s look at what those things are.
Check out the organic seal
As already mentioned, an organic seal certifies that a product is at least 95% organic. A product carrying a QAI, NSF, or USDA organic seal is truly organic.
Be careful where you buy the products
The black market does exist so there are a lot of imposter products claiming to be natural or organic. Make sure that you purchase these products in authorized stores or cosmetics online stores. This is essential as knockoffs tend to contain potentially harmful ingredients.
Study the label closely
It’s important to know that not all certified organic products have a seal on them. That’s why it’s key to carefully examine all the ingredients listed on the label. That will help us see whether the product contains synthetic elements.
3. Benefits of organic cosmetic products
Using organic cosmetic products has plenty of benefits. For starters, it contains organic vegetable oils as well as organic essential oils. These are rich in essential fatty acids and minerals, having moisturizing effects on our skin. Next, by using organic products there is less chance of harsh skin reactions. Also, companies that produce organic products usually don’t test them on animals, so it’s cruelty-free.
Moreover, it is recommended for people who have some skin conditions, as these products are safer and natural. However, this doesn’t mean that an organic product can’t cause a reaction – that’s why it’s always best to test it on some small part of your skin. And even in the cases of reactions, they subside quickly due to natural components. Furthermore, it doesn’t contain any endocrine disruptors, which have been linked to causing some health conditions such as mood swings, fertility issues and even cancer. On top of all, it’s good for the environment, widely available and affordable.
Using organic cosmetic products can ensure that we’re applying only natural and organically created products on our skin, which, at the same time, is able to enhance our best features and hide some small imperfections. It’s the perfect way to be beautiful in a safe and healthy way.