Natural Versus Organic Versus Synthetic: And How Dose Vegan Fit In to the Picture?

How do we know whether a Natural, Organic or Synthetic cream is best for our skin? Should we automatically reach for the all natural version versus a synthetic version? And what about organic? With the recent proliferation of messages it is difficult to understand the difference if there is any at all! Okay let’s not throw our hands up in the air just yet.

Here is what one of our insider’s had to say on the matter.

Natural Ingredients

Let’s first tackle the definitions. Natural and Organic are two very different beasts. A natural ingredient is sourced from nature but could be in the form of a synthetic derivative and could include pesticides. For natural ingredients look for the term “naturally sourced”, this means that the ingredient was sourced from nature.

Organic Ingredients

An organic ingredient is free of pesticides but may not necessarily be naturally sourced and could be synthetic. Organic standards vary around the world, look for the following labels:

CAAQ/Canada (at least 70% organic)

Eco Cert (at least 10% organic of total ingredients)

Australian Certified Organic (95-100% organic)

BIO/Germany (at least 95% organic)

QAI (at least 70% organic)

USDA Organic (95-100% organic)

European Union/Agriculture Biologique (at least 95% organic)

The Misunderstood Synthetic Ingredient

And lastly, the misunderstood synthetic ingredients – synthetic ingredients are derived from nature, having said that they are a man-made ingredient that mimic the naturally sourced ingredient – these technically could be organic. Synthetic ingredients go through rigorous testing to ensure that they are safe for the skin.

And Lastly Vegan Ingredients

Can be a combination of the above and do not come from an animal source. This includes honey for the diehard Vegans. And to add to the vegan ingredient story most companies that claim vegan ingredients also like to have their products listed with PETA or a reputable agency that list all products that do not come from animals and where no animals were harmed in any of the processing of the ingredients or end product.

Many of us don’t know that Natural and Organic ingredients can be harmful to the skin (witch hazel is a natural ingredient to avoid if you have sensitive skin).

We cannot say, without a doubt, that a Natural or Organic or Synthetic skin care cream will work better than the other. Each of us have unique and different skin types and what works on my skin won’t necessarily work on your skin for various reasons:

1. Layering- too many products and therefore the last cream you put on may not absorb

2. Environment assaults – pollution, wind, sun can wreak havoc on our skin

3. DNA – yup my skin cells could repair themselves faster than the person next to me.

Whatever your decision there is no right or wrong answer. When basing which skin care cream to choose base your decision on whether the company is socially responsible, if they give back to the community or if the packaging is recyclable – because when it comes to efficacy the lines are blurred on Synthetic vs Natural vs Organic. Lip gloss

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