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Curly Nikki

The Truth About Natural and Organic Products

By January 27th, 20217 Comments

via NaturallyCurly.com by Karen Mcintosh;

The average woman applies up to 200 chemicals to her skin every day through cosmetics, lotions and hair-care products. Yet few question the reality behind the marketing promise on our favorite bottle or jar of cosmetic, hair or skin product. After all, they come from reputable companies, are bought by millions of women around the world, and their ads demonstrate how beautiful we can be if we use them regularly. What’s not to trust?

Standards for Natural and Organic Beauty Products

You can buy cosmetics labeled natural and organic in supermarkets, drugstores, warehouse stores, online and in salons. But cosmetics are among the least-regulated products on the market, and products that are labeled organic or natural might not actually be. Major loopholes in federal law allow companies to use nearly any ingredient in beauty products—even chemicals that are known to harm human health and the environment.

The FDA does not review or regulate what goes into cosmetics before they are marketed to salons and consumers. It bans or restricts only 11 chemicals from cosmetic products compared to the 1,100 chemicals the European Union Cosmetics Directive bans from cosmetics.

But there are companies who care about the interests and safety of consumers, salon professionals and the environment.

Planet, People and Product

Nature is a cycle—of caring, taking and giving back—and producers of natural and organic beauty products share a deep respect for it. They join forces with nature, using its resources while sustaining them. They respect biodiversity, form long-term relationships with the people who actually cultivate the plants. And they follow fair trade practices.

Products with natural ingredients perform better without harmful chemical ingredients that enter the bloodstream by being absorbed through the skin. They also contain fewer irritants and allergens, and are earth friendly causing little to no negative impact on the environment.

Sales of natural and organic beauty products reached $7 billion in 2008 and accounted for $1 billion of growth in the cosmetic market. Sensing a tipping point, smart and responsible companies voluntarily began making safer products and adopted the triple bottom line of not just profit, but also planet and people. The ranks of companies who are adopting these practices are slowly growing with the support of organizations like NATRUE.

NATRUE – True Friends of Natural and Organic Cosmetics

A non-profit organization based in Brussels, NATRUE helps manufacturers maintain standards for natural and organic cosmetics (and their ingredients) by promoting industry-standard, global certifications for the usage of natural and organic beauty products.

Founded in 2007, NATRUE now represents two-thirds of the European natural and cosmetics market. Brands like Weleda, Dr. Hauschka Skin Care, Kneipp, Logona and Lavera are NATRUE certified. Burts Bees is the first U.S. manufacturer to join.

Drawing a Line Between Conventional and Natural Cosmetics

Most cosmetics are full of synthetic ingredients that NATRUE doesn’t think are necessary. Their globally recognized certification label tells you which products you can trust by guaranteeing that a product is as natural as it can be. The NATRUE label means the organic and natural product actually contains certifiable ingredients.

To bear the NATRUE label, a product must have natural and organic ingredients and use soft manufacturing and environmentally friendly practices. NATRUE certified products do not contain synthetic fragrances and colors, petroleum derived products (paraffins, PEG-, propyle-, alkyle-, etc.), silicone oils and derivatives, or genetically modified ingredients. Furthermore, ingredients and products must not have been tested on animals. NATRUE certifies both products and raw materials, and maintains a raw materials database for products that bear their label.

The NATRUE label has three certification levels starting with the Natural Cosmetics certification. It sets a high base standard that must be attained before a product can qualify for the other two levels. The NATRUE certification process is transparent, independently managed and all certification criteria and information is available at their website.

Consumers and Salon Professionals Benefit

The NATRUE label allows consumers to avoid potentially harmful chemicals in the beauty products they use every day. Stylists can provide customers with safe, effective, non-toxic products and protect customers and employees alike from exposure to harmful chemical ingredients. They can also encourage manufacturers of brands they carry to clarify how they define their natural and organic beauty products.

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*Karen Mcintosh (Suburbanbushbabe in CurlTalk) is grateful to the straight hair gods who ignored her. Share your views with Karen in CurlTalk or her blog!

7 Comments

  • Unknown says:

    Anonymous @ 8:22, you are correct. The FDA does NOT certify products or ingredients as organic, but the USDA does and it is their symbol that you should look for. Maybe that was an oversight by the writer. Anonymous @ 10:37, you are correct too. There are many natural products to which some people are allergic or sensitive to.

  • Anonymous says:

    It's up to every individual that is concerned about what they are putting on their bodies to do their research whether it's man made or not. The difference between manmade chemicals and poisons and allergens in nature is that you have to go completely out of your way to avoid man-made chemicals that have the potential to be harmful. Some people don't care what is in their products and that's fine, noone can force them to but if you are concerned DO YOUR RESEARCH AND READ THE LABELS. For the most part, the companies and corporations that make these products only care about your money, not you.

  • Anonymous says:

    this article is misleading. granted, natural is better than toxic, man-made chemicals but just because something is natural doesn't mean it's safe or harmless. nature is full of poisonous plant extracts and allergens.

  • Anonymous says:

    I thought organic products have to be USDA approved What products besides Burt bees have the natrue label

  • Lady Jaye says:

    Just because something is "natural" doe NOT automatically mean it is better for the body than something that is "chemical"

  • Milan says:

    I agree with anonymous, almost everything is a chemical. It is better to do your research to learn what ingredients pose harm and which ones don't.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please be wary of the phrases, "no chemicals" or "chemical free". REMEMBER chemicals are all around you, water is a chemical. I know we don't think of it as one but it is. It is better to find out precisely which harsh chemical the product doesn't have and question any strange names that you don't recognize on the label.

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