Toxins—they enter your body in many different ways. Through the air you breathe, the food you eat, and the beauty products you use. We saw the natural food movement come roaring through recently, and now there’s a similar boom in “natural” skincare products. But what does “natural” mean these days, anyway? The word is absolutely meaningless when you see it on a food label, so why should it be any different for skincare? While the word itself doesn’t really mean much for you, there can be benefits to using skincare products with more unprocessed ingredients and fewer chemicals—as long as you know what to look for.
So what are some of the perks of switching over to a more natural skincare routine?
Yep, there are lots of chemicals and toxins in most conventional beauty products. The scary part? These chemicals are largely unregulated by the FDA. That means you won’t know exactly how those toxins listed on your face wash bottle will affect your skin and health in the long term—not exactly a comforting thought. The European Union has actually banned many of the skincare products on US shelves over concerns of serious side effects. So why aren’t we just as concerned?
Let’s look at a few examples of the kinds of chemicals that can be hiding in your skincare products. Ever hear of something called “parabens”? They’re bad news. So are phthalates. Parabens are preservatives that have been linked to breast cancer, while phthalates affect the endocrine in the body, which can cause a whole host of problems. Even the carcinogenic formaldehyde can make an appearance in everyday cosmetics. So why do manufacturers put these chemicals in beauty products? That’s the question many smart consumers are asking.
2. The Environment
We all know this planet’s not going to last very long if we don’t play a very big role in keeping our environment safe. Makers of more natural skincare products are often eco-focused, using organic, responsibly-sourced, sustainable ingredients and avoiding products that take a toll on the environment, like microbeads, which have been polluting our lakes to the point that some states have banned them.
3. Ethical Testing
Animal testing is alive and well, and most people aren’t comfortable with supporting it for cosmetics. These days, there are lots of “cruelty-free” products to choose from—and many of these fall into the “natural” skincare product category. Just looking for the “cruelty-free” label on your skincare products can give you peace of mind.
4. Skin Health
Of course, it’s important to find products that actually work. Most people don’t need tons of chemicals to keep the skin looking fresh, healthy, and beautiful. In fact, many people notice positive changes in their skin quality when switching over to more natural products. Look for makeup and skincare products that use natural plant butters, oils, and cleansers, and avoid a long ingredient list you can’t pronounce. If you wouldn’t put it in your mouth, why put it on your face?
Need Help? Talk to an Expert
Not all “natural” products are equally honest and good—some companies are just out to make a quick buck, and you may need to experiment to find a routine that works for you. Skincare can be confusing, and you’re not always going to know what to do when it comes to choosing the right products or fixing problems like acne and wrinkles. That’s where an expert dermatologist comes in. No matter what your age or skin type, you can benefit from the help of a board certified cosmetic dermatologist like Dr. Diane Walder.
Dr. Walder is a nationally-acclaimed skincare expert, offering advice and powerful treatments for all skin types at her Miami offices. If you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Walder and her colleagues, call (305-866-2177) today.