LET’S TALK INGREDIENTS
A FEW TIPS AND TRICKS TO BEING A CONSCIOUS SHOPPER
Companies that are genuinely doing their best to do right by the customer have nothing to hide. There is no need for smoke and mirrors. It may sound harsh, but the best way to be a conscious shopper is always to assume one is being manipulated. This way of thinking will put you in the mindset to question and research something before you commit to buying it and putting it all over your body.
If you see a certification on an ingredient or product, look into it! Oftentimes, products will showcase their star ingredients that are sustainable or organic while distracting you from the harmful additives they hope you won’t see.
At Live Naturally Co. we put it all out there. So, let’s get into some of the ingredients that you may not recognize in our products along with some key info that you may find eye-opening.
➺ If you missed us exposing the truth about the term “natural,” then make sure to check out the home page before you go!
FRAGRANCE…WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
Good question! “Fragrance” is the one thing on the cosmetics label that does not have to be defined. This means it could be a concoction of chemical additives, irritants, and sensitizers that are all summarized under the term “fragrance.”
“Fragrance” is the one secret ingredient that businesses have to keep other companies from being able to replicate their product, AKA “Trade secret.” If you are a formulator, you can look at a list of ingredients and figure out a rough idea of how to replicate it. But if you don’t know what made it smell the way it does, you are out of luck!
We do currently use fragrance oils in a small number of our products. We do this because not every plant has the ability to be an essential oil. Therefore, the only way to obtain the fragrance in the product is by using a fragrance oil or purchasing an expensive alternative (which would hike the price up for the customer).
We purchase our oils from a supplier who is located in and manufactures in the USA. We also make a point to label any product that uses a fragrance oil with a statement so the consumer can decide whether or not they want to buy the product.
We use very minimal amounts and are currently researching possible alternatives to get away from using fragrance oils altogether! Otherwise, we focus on the implementation of essential oils from reputable distributors.
BTMS 25 & 50- NOT A SULFATE!”Behentrimonium Methosulfate is a cationic surfactant found in conditioners that provides some slip. The blend of Behentrimonium Methosulfate & Cetearyl alcohol (or BTMS) is considered the mildest conditioning hair-detangling ingredient available. Although this substance may sound like an industrial chemical, it is a safe and vegetable-based ingredient derived from rapeseed oil.” (source)
CETYL ALCOHOL- “It is common for Cetyl Alcohol to be wrongly understood as the type of alcohol that has drying effects on the skin, such as rubbing alcohol; however, on the contrary, Cetyl Alcohol is skin-friendly with hydrating, conditioning, and softening properties that benefit both skin and hair. It is an alcohol that is derived from a fat, such as a vegetable oil like Coconut Oil or Palm Oil; hence it is also called Palmityl Alcohol.”
CETEARYL ALCOHOL- “Cetearyl Alcohol is a favorite fatty alcohol of many formulators due to its versatility, dry but emollient feel, and the luxurious thickness it imparts.
Cetearyl Alcohol is a combination of two other fatty alcohols, namely cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol (or Stearic acid)—thus the name Cetearyl. Both are vegetable-derived and very unlike the simple alcohols familiar at the bar in cocktails. Instead, fatty alcohols are light, non-greasy emollients and create a dry, powdery finish with a fluffy texture. They help stabilize emulsions and this results in a slightly thicker product.
STEARIC ACID- “A fatty acid that occurs naturally in plant fats (typically coconut or palm oil), stearic acid is white, solid, often crystalline, and with a mild odor. It’s a major component of cocoa and shea butter.
Stearic acid is an emulsifier, emollient, and lubricant that can soften skin and help to keep products from separating.”
BROAD SPECTRUM PRESERVATIVE- Broad-spectrum preservatives cover a ‘broad spectrum’ of microbes including bacteria, mold, and yeast and offer the best, most effective protection against microbial contamination for the longest period of time.
SODIUM COCOYL ISETHIONATE – “A cleansing agent that’s claimed to be so gentle on the skin that it hardly impacts the skin barrier. It also gives a rich, creamy foam, it’s based on vegetable fatty acids and is readily biodegradable.
It’s an especially important and popular ingredient in “syndet bars” (or soapless soaps). Dr. Leslie Baumann says in her great Cosmetic Dermatology book that thanks to the unique molecular characteristic of Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, it “has defined a new dimension in the mildness of cleansing bars”.”
COCO GLUCOSIDE- “When Glucose – sugar and starch from wheat or corn – reacts chemically with the fatty alcohols derived from Coconut Oil, the result is Coco Glucoside: a natural, gentle, and environmentally-friendly cleansing agent and surfactant (a title that is the shortened version of the term “Surface Active Agent”). Coco Glucoside may also result from the combination of Glucose and Palm Oil derivatives.”
COCAMIDOPROPYL BETAINE- Cocamidopropyl betaine is an organic compound derived from coconut oil that you can find in many of your “natural” or “organic” skincare and hair care products. CAPB is created by mixing raw coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine, creating what is known as an amphoteric surfactant. This compound can act as an acid or a base depending on its surroundings. When used in shampoos and soaps, it creates a thick lather.
PALM OIL- Research is showing that boycotting Palm oil is not the way to go. Palm oil is one of the most efficient crops across the world. Replacing it with less efficient crops that require more space and water to yield the same results would only lead to different disasters and downfalls. However, we can’t ignore the impact unregulated palm oil production has on the orangutan species and other beautiful wildlife and habitats.
So, what is the right move? First, we can stop supporting companies and businesses that are not following RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) guidelines for palm oil. Then we can shift our focus to supporting those companies who are doing their part and proving they implement sustainable practices into their palm oil crops, harvesting, and production.
Next time you are grocery shopping, take a look at your margarine spread and other products. Do they have the RSPO sustainable palm oil certification logo? No? Please put the item back and buy one that does.
We are trying to find a balance of using other ingredients in place of palm for some formulas and purchasing from palm oil businesses that have proven responsible and hold the RSPO certifications.
As consumers, we hold the reigns and drive what companies survive and fail. We should use our voice and tell companies why we don’t buy their products and what they could do to get us on board as a consumer. Outside of that, what we can do is consume less overall. Less consumption is the most aggressive way we will make a difference.
⭐Check out the WWF (world wildlife foundation) to learn more about Palm Oil click here