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Organic Skin Care – What to Know

If you are looking for organic skin care, remember thats skin care and cosmetics have gone together for as long as we can remember.

Yet there are a whole lot of myths and false beliefs along with misinformation on products that have flooded the skin care market today.

These days it has become fashionable to use the term ‘organic’ in context of almost everything from food brands to vegetables, consumer items and cosmetics. Many people believe that organic means something that is wholly natural. That is simply not true in many cases; cosmetic brands are one segment that should be treated with caution as far as product usage is concerned.

Organic skin care products denote products that use a large percentage of plant-based derivatives in their composition along with a few naturally occurring compounds and ingredients that are developed or grown without the use of additives, fertilizers and pesticides.

Natural Cosmetics

Another term that is bandied about even more is ‘natural’ which is found on almost all cosmetic products. It is quite surprising to know that there are no industry standards or regulations as far as these terms are concerned; in the case of skin care, there are numerous organic and natural compounds that can actually harm the skin.

This shows how deep-rooted some marketing trends are that customers simply get taken in. The reality is that these mean practically nothing on cosmetic labels and the question still remains whether these products are actually made with the formulations claimed.

This is where we begin to understand the myth that ‘organic is always better’.

While there are good and bad products in every category, what is more shocking is the presence of some synthetic substances and ingredients in supposedly natural and organic products which make them quite unsafe.

There have been many reports of food products originating from ‘organic’ farms that have caused outbreaks of bacterial infections in large communities of people which don’t really allay fears about safety standards and cleanliness in manufacture of products.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate claims of ‘organic’ for personal-care products as do most agencies around the world; however the US Department of Agriculture in co-ordination with ECOCERT (which is an international organization for organic certification)  have their own ratings for approving certain standards of organic claims.

In Canada, the Canadian Organic Standards do not cover personal care products/cosmetics. Cosmetic labeling is governed by Health Canada and there are no guidelines or rules currently about calling products “natural”, “organic”,  (see CBC Marketplace Lousy Labels episode)
You will not be able to buy certified organic skin care products with the Canada Organic Standards logo on them (unless they are certified by the USDA NOPprogram as food).

There are many random certification companies worldwide that provide approval ratings for cosmetic brands against their own set of standards for payment of a fee. Consumers need to do their own due diligence to ensure their skin care products are natural and safe.

To learn more about skin care featured in the August 2020 issue of the Herbal Collective, join the Herbal Collective newsletter 
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