Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and it plays an important role in your health. Did you know that you have about 300 million skin cells that completely renew themselves approximately every 28 days? Your skin is like your raincoat, acting as a waterproof barrier. The most important thing to know is that your skin has the ability to absorb! We see just how effective this is when we look at how drugs are delivered through skin patches. Yes, ‘transdermal absorption’ is not something a lot of people consider when they lather on their cosmetics.
The multi-billion dollar cosmetic industry can be quite a deceptive one. Since there is no main regulatory body for this industry it is very loosely monitored. With action only taking place if there is a public complaint.
This is where we need to understand the ‘accumulation effect syndrome’. We expose ourselves to over 200 chemicals a day through our personal products alone, without taking into account our household cleaners, air fresheners, pollution, or the toxins in our food. Over time these small quantities of chemicals and toxins build up in our bodies. For those who are sensitive it doesn’t take long before symptoms of toxic build-up begin to show in ways such as headaches, chronic fatigue, skin problems and mood swings, yet for others, it can take years before their immune system may be compromised. However, because the accumulation can be slow and subtle, many people are reluctant to change from their favourite product when they see no immediate reaction. What we need to remember is that we have a natural affinity and synergy with nature.
Plants have been used in beauty for thousands of years, and for good reason. The proven healing and restorative qualities in the plant kingdom are not only the best things for your skin, but promote overall health and balance. Fortunately as people are becoming more aware of ingredients in skincare and marketing ploys, the public is starting to demand safer and more natural products. You just need be savvy out there in the big wilderness of cosmetics as everyone is cashing in on the claim to be natural. In fact the words ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ have considerable market value nowadays and when you only need to have 5% of natural ingredients in your product to call it natural or use the chemistry definition of organic as a compound that contains a carbon atom. No wonder people get misled.
When it comes to skincare products it is important to look for ingredients you can read, things you could have in our own kitchen. If you see words like paraben, SLS, TEA, PEG or DEA or even the word fragrance you can safely put it back on the shelf knowing it is not natural. Science is unable to replicate many of the bio-active trace elements found in natural plant-based ingredients.
So go simple. Even if you started with an organic Rosehip Oil and Lavender essential oil you have an amazing skincare product on its own. No only is it just two ingredients but these two ingredients together are rich in essential fatty acids, vitamin A, C and E and lashings of antioxidants.
Let’s face it, with our busy lifestyles we need quick, simple and effective skincare methods that give us results. For some people results can be achieved quite quickly, especially if the skin has been out of balance. But we need to remember that skin cells take on average 28 days to renew therefore you need to give your skin at least that amount of time to reap the benefits of a good skincare routine. It doesn’t have to be complicated or too involved, or mean spending a whole heap of money on various creams and potions for all the different areas of the face. It is more important to focus on eliminating harmful ingredients, quality products, good techniques and a belief that you are worth every precious moment.