I am going to break down a few of the most common misconceptions people have of "natural skincare"...or that they "think" may be "all-natural" and "safe". No, I did not study Harvard Law, nor do I have a Ph. D., but I do have knowledge in this industry and these are just my opinions. :)
1) Just because you may see a "free" on a product, does not make that product ALL natural or safer than any other product. Some products may say "Phthalate Free", etc. Yeah, that is great and all, but what are "phthalates"? Phthalates aka "plasticizers", are the most common toxic chemicals found in fragrance oils to make the scents last longer. I happen to know this because I make skincare products and the few products that I do incorporate fragrance oils in, happen to be "phthalate free", haha, but most buyers would not know this. Look at what else may be listed in the ingredients too, do your research and educate yourself if you are that interested in what you put on your skin. I think we are all just accustomed to seeing a "free" listed on a product and we don't really care what the product is "free" of...we just automatically think its a better product and so we purchase it. Lol.
2) No preservatives! Ok, this is a personal preference really. Using no preservatives, you are eliminating chemicals, which is a positive. But by using zero preservatives, you have a much greater chance of creating mold and bacteria...and fairly quickly. This also makes for a much shorter shelf life. I don't know about you, but I would rather not take that chance. There are safe preservatives out there to make a safe product. Products that are oil-based only, do not necessarily need a preservative, but it is always a safer product in my opinion if there is a preservative used. I do not use preservatives in my Sugar Scrubs or Perfume Oils, soley because there is no water used in those formulas and a preservative really isn't needed. I do, however, use honey in all of my Sugar Scrubs just to add a natural preservative in case anyone gets water in the jars from using it in the shower or bath...it will add some shelf life as well. When I use preservatives, I choose paraben-free preservatives. Parabens are a class of chemicals that are widely used as preservatives in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. Much safer to eliminate parabens all together.
3) Just because it says "natural" or "aromatherapy", doesn't mean it is! There are so many times that I am in department stores and laugh at their label and then see what is in their ingredients. Just because a product says "pomegranate" doesn't mean that is what you are getting or putting on your skin, yeah, it may smell like pomegranate, but I don't see that ingredient on the label- it is just the fragrance of pomegranate! Same with Aromatherapy---there are so many times I see this on a label, but there are no essential oils used. It is just the scent of Eucalyptus, etc. So don't always believe what you read...or better yet, read the small print! Some may say Eucalyptus "essence", etc. Two different things. Then they will charge you an arm and a leg for it.
4) Skincare products are not going to kill you. Just make smarter, wiser and safer choices! I come across a lot of people that are so paranoid about what they put on their skin because of the new "organic" and "natural" popularity and health scare blurbs we all read and the possible dangers of using anything other than organic and natural. This is the reason why I try to keep my brand my own, due to how popular "all-things-natural" have widely become. Which is great! I can ABSOLUTELY understand that, as I am that way too! However, you never hear of any skincare products that have killed anyone...unless, possibly, they were highly allergic and/or digesting them! Just be cautious of some ingredient dangers, i.e. irritants, allergens, etc. and you will be fine! Also, focus on your own skin types and understand what works and what doesn't. Understand what your skin type specifically needs. Using all natural ingredients that are safer and healthier for us, such as Bellaroma products, will reduce the chances of having any type of reaction and will feed your skin the nutrients your skin needs! No added gunk! Easy peasy!
5) SLS vs. DLS- I get asked many times if any of my products contain SLS or sulfates. The answer is no. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is a sulfate, Disodium Laureth Sulfocuccinate is not. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is the most commonly used foaming agent in cosmetics. Almost all department store products contain this ingredient. It is a big skin irritant. If you cannot understand why you may be having a bad reaction to something you have used.. because maybe what you are allergic to may not be on the ingredients list, check to see if Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is on it...and if it is, bingo! I use DLS. DLS is derived from coconut oil and has not been sulfated in the production process which makes it free of sulfates. It may sound the same, but they are two different ingredients. DLS is known to be very mild and gentle to the skin, even at very high concentrations it remains non-irritating to even sensitive skin types. Sulfates are smaller molecules and are capable of penetrating the skin, which can increase the occurrence of skin irritation. Larger molecule ingredients, such as Disodium Laureth Sulfocuccinate, are considered to be mild, gentle and non-irritating, as they cannot penetrate the skin.
6) "100% All-Natural Ingredients" does not mean "100% All-Natural Products". Many people think that if the product is 100% all natural, that it will not harm their skin. This goes back to #2. Using no preservatives. More harm can be done if you are using a product that will go bad fast because of not using a preservative. I love using homemade masks from real eggs, milk, fresh avocado, etc. But I use it as a "one-time use". If I were to jar and ship it, it would more than likely mold before it arrives at the customers' doorstep. Especially in warmer weather conditions. Yes, it is possible to make a 100% all-natural PRODUCT, but again, you will have a very short shelf life.
"High quality" is my number one priority. :) I make my products safe, healthy and pure using 100% all-natural exotic ingredients in conjunction with safe preservatives.
While I'm sure there are many more misconceptions I could write, these seem to be the top 6 off the top of my head. I sure hope this blog post clears up any misunderstandings some people may have on "natural skincare". :) Bottom line, read your ingredient labels, educate yourself and understand that many products that are loaded with harmful chemicals, are usually the same products that are the most costly! Investigate your options carefully.