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Hot Topic: Natural Ingredients

Anyone that knows me will tell you I’m elbow deep in dirt during the summer gardening, harvesting food, hiking, drying herbs and what not. I’m considered a “crunchy granola” type person, I’d live in a tree and eat bark if you’d let me. 

When I decided to start my own business I knew that I wanted to have quality ingredients that were beneficial, vegan and as natural to the source as possible. That being said I’m also an Esthetician and I’ve seen first hand how synthetic made ingredients have impacted the skin in a positive manner. Many times skin nourishing natural ingredients like honey have a synthetic vegan option available with equally as effective benefits.

Synthetic:(of a substance) made by chemical synthesis, especially to imitate a natural product.

What happens when those natural ingredients are depleting and we have to lean on synthetics? So where does that leave it on the natural scale?

I feel words like ‘natural’ , ‘chemical’ and ‘hypo allergenic’ are hot topic words. Poison ivy is natural, water is a chemical, essential oils are natural but putting them undiluted on your body can put you into the hospital. My disdain for ‘hypo allergenic’ is purely because you don’t know what’s left out of a product to make something not react to you and honestly some people don’t even know what they are sensitive to; dyes, talc, preservatives, extracts, fragrance, alcohol and aloe are all common allergens. So what makes something have a leg up on something else? What makes us shun helpful synthetics and chemicals that could be beneficial? Is natural always better?

Guess what? The term natural isn't regulated by the FDA! It's such a gray area and I don't claim that my products are 100% natural because MY definition and YOUR definition and SUSAN'S definition are all different. There are NO guidelines. Some people will even argue that the shea butter isn't natural because its been processed from a nut. See where I'm going with this? I'm all about taking charge of what you want from your products, read ingredients, be informed and YOU decide what you want to do. Do research from various (yes more than one) studies not fear mongering websites, there's nothing wrong with you wanting to use products that contain silicone if you've done research and you want them because you like the way they feel. It's YOUR skin. Women in Greece slather themselves in pure olive oil and look like goddesses, you can too if thats what you want (and what your skin needs). 

As you can tell there’s lots of questions floating around. And I’m not here to tell you what you should think but merely to show you my point of view. Am I slathering on my arnica grapeseed oil infusion? Hell yes I am. Am I also using an 5% AHA serum bolstered with a synthetic version of honey and loaded with natural extracts? Hell yes I am. Would I eat something growing off a log, of course, this is me we're talking about. 

With my previous line Dark Alchemy I introduced a slew of new ingredients. All were thoroughly researched, even down to their environmental impact, and while you can’t grow vegan MSM on trees or harvest it from the soil, it was a quality ingredient that I chose to use in conjunction with herbal extracts, organic hydrosols, cold pressed oils and butters. I cannot disregard my years of experience as an Esthetician, my love of herbs, my continual learning of chemistry and simply shun ingredients that help with skin conditions, my life goal is to heal skin. I believe having a mix of natural ingredients and helpful synthetics is a win win in skincare. They are helping hands that often enhance each other  

The majority of my products contain ingredients you can pronounce, identify and get the general jist of their purpose. I’ll be rolling out product breakdowns for the new skincare because some ingredients will be not so familiar territory. And that’s okay! They’re not scary (even if they look like that in their formal name), they’re there to beef up a product and make it wowza. 

The choices are yours but I thought it might be helpful to see how I combine my crunchy granola self with my Esthetician self. 



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