If you are new to natural skin care and looking to change to more skin friendly products you probably have many questions and whereas we are more than happy to answer any queries you may have, here you will find the answers to the most commonly asked questions.
What do Natural Creams Look Like?
If you have only been using highstreet cosmetics, you may find our natural creams a little richer. Start with a tiny amount to see how much your skin requires and if necessary apply some more. If you find the creams on the heavy side, don't be put off. Next time you put some on make sure your skin is slightly damp (from face washing or apply a face toner) and use a little less. There is nothing in our products to clog your pores, just wonderful oils to soothe and nourish your skin.
Some of our creams have the consistency of a standard 'white' cream, others are a lot richer and have the look of a butter, balm or ointment. To be sure you understand what product you are ordering, simply check the ingredients list. If the product contains purified water or flower water (hydrolat), it will be of similar texture to a conventional white cream. If the product contains only oils and butters or waxes, then it will look like a butter.
What Do Natural Shampoo & Shower Gel Look Like?
Our Shampoo & Shower Gels, based on the mild sugar derived detergent Coco Glucoside, look very similar to standard shampoo and shower gel, just a little bit cloudy and runny jelly like. They are very gentle and will not strip your skin from natural moisture. Because they are mild, you may find they don't foam as much as commercial products, but rest assured they cleanse just as effectively and will not damage your skin or hair. For best results when using a sulfate free shampoo, wet your hair thoroughly, apply the shampoo and wait a minute or so before rinsing.
How Do I Use Natural Creams?
It is best to use a clean spatula or even a cotton bud to remove the creams from their jars as opposed to fingers, which may harbour bacteria and contaminate the creams. If you do decide to use your fingers, please make sure they are really clean. All our face creams and lotions are packaged in airless dispensers so there would be no contamination from fingers, simply apply like any other product.
If you are using a natural cream for the first time, it is advisable to do a patch test first, just to make sure you are not sensitive to any of the ingredients. We do sell our creams and butters in Travel sizes 15 ml, which are perfect for trialing a product over a period of a couple of weeks.
How Do I Store Natural Creams?
Due to the non-reliance on chemical preservatives, true natural creams will detiriorate faster than highstreet skin care products.
The creams are best stored away from direct sunlight and below 25C. Most creams have a shelf life of about 12 months unopened and 3-4 months once you start using them.
During warm weather, it is normal for the butters and creams to become a little runnier and slight separation of oils to occur. Do not worry, this is entirely normal, simply stir or shake the product to emulsify the ingredients. This does not affect the quality of the cream.
How natural is natural ?
Some people believe that 100% natural skin care should be made purely from vegetable oils, a thickening wax (beeswax, carnauba wax etc) and nothing else. All of our body butters are just that - a pure blend of cold pressed oils & butters! However, since these products do not contain water, they can be a little bit greasy and should be used straight after a shower (on the body) or in combination with a flower water (for facial use), their application requires more time to allow the product to soak into the skin, and this alternative way to moisturise your skin doesn't suit everyone, especially those that have a busy lifestyle.
Most people know that oil and water don't mix together, unless you want to shake everything vigorously prior to each application, something we did try a while back and didn't enjoy much. To make a light cream or lotion, which will not separate after a week or so after being made, an emulsifying wax should be added to the formulation to keep everything together. There is a lot of controversy about the emulsifiers used in skincare today, as many contain sls, pegs and other synthetic ingredients.
However, after extensive research we were able to source our emulsifying wax, which is extracted purely from plant oils and the process involved to produce it, does not employ the use of any chemicals or solvents. As a result we have been able to formulate a number of skin care products part of our range, which are light in texture, soak easily into the skin and are a joy to use.
And they are still 100% natural!
Soap or Soap Free?
You can use natural handmade soap not only for your body, but for your hair too, and if you would like to go the completely natural route, soap is perhaps the most natural product to use. However, soap doesn't suit everybody. If you have a long hair or would like to achieve a sleek appearance, washing it with soap, full of natural glycerine, simply can't achieve the result you want or expect. Of course, you can add an acidic rinse to your hair care regime, to counteract the coating effect soap has on the hair, but this may not suit everyone.
The other choice you have is to use a soap free wash/shampoo. These products are made with a foaming ingredient and the source, production method & chemical formula of these is what is most important. SLS (whether derived from petroleum oil or coconut oil) is extremely drying for the skin and irritating to the airways & eyes. The truth is that all sulfates (even ALS - ammonium laureth sulfate, as used by a popular 'natural' UK brand) are almost as harsh as SLS itself and changing to another sulfate based product may not improve anything, especially if there is a skin complaint involved. Throwing a few herbal extracts to such a product, will not make it any more natural or gentle compared to all the conventional washes that are full of chemicals.
Sulfates aside, there is another group of foaming ingredients - the glucosides (decyl, coco & lauryl) which are the mildest soap free foaming ingredients available. The glucosides are derived from either coconut, corn or palm oil, and because they are produced without chemicals, they have been approved by EcoCert as a green alternative to the widely available SLS.
All our face washes, shampoos, shower gels and hand washes are based on coco glucoside and offer a mild, natural and skin friendly alternative to SLS based foaming products.