A new generation of skincare is changing the way we think about our skin and the planet.
Organics have come a long way since the late 60’s brought on the ‘natural beauty’ trend. But this movement is no longer confined to the hippies of society, and is seeping into the mainstream as more beauty boffins are becoming health conscious.
Just ask The Beauty Chef.
Author of Feeding Your Skin feeding-your-skin and editor of Wellbeing Beauty Book, Carla Oates, stands at the forefront of the organic cosmetics movement as well as creating her own brand of natural beauty products; Carla Oates Beauty. Carla’s last 10 years of research combines her passion for creating skincare formulations with her love of natural science. All formulas in the range are based on her own unique recipes. Carla describes the secret to naturally beautiful skin as something that “has become very apparent to me over the last couple of years… women who anoint themselves with the purest of oils and botanical concoctions have the most radiant, succulent skin” (Feeding Your Skin).
So, why choose organic skincare? Carla notes that modern women of today are too quick to entrust their health with big companies: “Most of our favourite cosmetics are made with chemical solvents and synthetic additives – questionable substances that are directly absorbed into the body through the skin and overtime may compromise our well being. Even the pots of goo that trade under the ‘green’ banner are often full of undesirable ingredients.” Carla emphasizes that women who exude a natural beauty usually have a “holistic approach to beauty; they eat well, exercise and engage in activities that give them joy. After all, joy is a woman’s best cosmetic!”
How do you know what’s certified and what’s not?
Say hello to your new best friend – the Australian Certified Organic Logo.
To put it simply, a product with a certified label contains more than 95% certified organic ingredients. The left-over percentage (maximum 5%) of non-organic ingredients are required to be naturally produced plant products and/or natural, non toxic preservatives/additives.
But watch out for the sneaky slackers.
Despite the do-gooders of the beauty world trying to set things right, there will always be the sneaky few trying to make an extra buck. There are a number of organic certifier’s world-wide and each one certifies cosmetic products to a different set of standards.
While some demand a high level of up to 95%, others allow just 10% organic ingredients. Different amounts of organic ingredients are allowed under different standards, so be careful.
For those on a budget, look out for products which are ‘made with certified organic ingredients’. Though they cannot be certified organic under Australian Certified Organic standards, they contain a minimum of 70% certified organic ingredients and the remaining ingredients are also derived from natural sources.
Beauty from the inside out Carla Oates Beauty is still in its infancy, but there are already two products available for purchase for those natural beauties that want to stock up.
The Inner Beauty Powder ($59.95/150g) encapsulates Oates’ message of working from the inside out: “food fermentation… has a powerful, biologically enhancing effect on ingredients that increases their nutrient value, produces good bacteria, which is vital for a healthy gut, and I am a big believer that beautiful skin starts in the gut.”
“Applied to skincare, the art of fermentation creates supernatural ingredients with increased bio-availability that can be absorbed into the deeper layers of the skin. So you receive super charged ingredients by using a completely natural bio-system without the use of synthetic ingredients, while keeping in tune with the biorhythms of our bodies and nature.”
The fermentation process used for Carla’s ingredients is backed by twenty years of research: “A host of good bacteria are introduced to my ingredients and they are left to ferment for weeks before being dried into a powder. Each batch is safety tested for bacteria levels to ensure the absence of bad bacteria and the presence of billions of good bacteria. Each 150g container of Inner Beauty Powder contains billions of good bacteria to help improve gut health, and therefore your skin.”
You can also try out the Coco Balm ($24.95). The natural minerals and Vitamin C from Oates’s Coco Balm is amazingly successful in ‘smoothing, hydrating and rejuvenating the skin’. All products in the range are Bio-Active; free of toxic chemicals; full of natural, organic, local and fair-trade ingredients; and have recyclable packaging.