The bottom line on natural skincare
Posted by PR Neom
By Holistic Facial Therapist, Eminé Rushton.
As a holistic facial therapist, I find that my body and skin are, without fail, healthier the more I align my choices with nature. Whether that is in taking a food-grown Magnesium supplement (as opposed to a wholly synthetic magnesium silicate or oxalate or moisturising my body with organic cold-pressed oils, by simplifying my choices and removing as many unnecessary synthetics from my day as I can, I also lower my body's overall toxic load. My beauty choices are a natural extension of my lifestyle choices - simple, pure, natural.
There's another reason why I choose natural over synthetics: the EU bans 1,238 chemicals from use in cosmetics - including formaldehyde, asbestos and cola tar - that are known or suspected to cause cancer, genetic mutation, reproductive harm or birth defects. The US Food & Drugs Administration (FDA), by comparison, has only banned or restricted 11.*
I think there's never been a better time to get very clear on what goes into the cosmetics products you purchase. My safeguarding apps of choice are Skin Ninja (where you can check by brand, product & ingredient). Think Dirty, and online database EWG.org, which offers very detailed breakdowns into the potential risk of all cosmetic ingredients. In short, the impetus behind my choices is not some leap towards an increasingly 'clean' bandwagon - it's a real flag, waved high and proud, to champion those who are doing good things, naturally.
Having said all of this, nothing in skincare is ever black and white...I qualified as a facial therapist in 2013 and went on to focus on holistic facial treatments that were always customised to the needs of the skin on the table: I have never performed the same facial treatment twice. Our skin changes from day to day, let alone season, and so it's important that we get to know it as well as we can. Skin is responsive, intuitive, delicate, intelligent - one size can never fit all. So, while I use only naturals, I also know that 'natural' is by no means a guarantee of efficacy, compatibility of safety. Not all essential oils are created equal, nor are all essential oils equally useful for our facial skin. In my treatments, I regularly use rose, chamomile, lavender and geranium oils. I love rose's ability to comfort, calm and nourish, and geranium to balance, tone and support.
I've seen over and over again, how quickly sensitised, dry, compromised skin responds to gentle, natural oils - it's instantaneous nourishment, and skin really glows once it's been properly fed. I love naturally balancing jojoba, nurturing rosehip, healing calendula, nourishing baobab and rejuvenating pomegranate seed oil - which is wonderfully high in antioxidants too. That's the other great thing about using natural plant oils, botanicals and extracts - you are also delivering antioxidants, good fats and vitamins to the skin, that you cannot synthesise in a laboratory. Baobab's essential fatty acid-rich profile is also buoyed with skin-perfecting vitamins A, D and E - all of which are often added into synthetic skincare, in synthetic forms (which will be less 'bio-available' to our bodies & skin, once absorbed).
But most importantly of all, be your skin's best advocate. Every shift and sign that your skin shares with you - from red cheeks to jawline blemishes - is valuable information - pointing to what's going on within & beneath. I'd recommend learning more about Facial Mapping (in traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurveda) - it's a great way to open your eyes to skin's natural rhythms and needs, and will empower you to make better choices too.