Why we choose the ingredients we do...
"How do you choose what ingredients to put into your product?" This is a question I've been asked many times by friends, family and strangers alike. It's an important question that deserves some attention to the answer as it is central to the foundation of my business, however the simple answer is, research.
I started making my own products for myself and my family to save money, and it started me down an important road to discovering how many potentially harmful chemicals are found in our homes. Hidden in seemingly harmless products like cleaning supplies, lotions, shampoos and toothpastes are dozens of chemicals that have been found to have harmful effects on the body- parabens, phthalates, synthetic colors and fragrances, preservatives and many others that have been linked to cancer, hormone disruption, weakening the immune system, allergic reactions and possibly chronic diseases. There are many wonderful books and websites that delve further into this subject than we will here, but introducing the topic is important to creating awareness, which is important in instigating change in the industry.
Instead of focusing on the toxins, we prefer to focus on natural ingredients that can help people live healthier. Nature provides many natural oils, butters, herbs and minerals that naturally nourish our hair, skin and teeth and can help our bodies start repairing years, sometimes decades of chemical damage. We choose as many raw, unrefined, cold pressed and organic ingredients as we can since they retain more vitamins and fatty acids than their refined, heat treated counterparts. The best way to provide the best products, is to start with the best ingredients! Many of the herbs used are locally grown, and we support local honey bee farms by using locally sourced raw honey from Puyallup, WA and Lakewood, WA. Listed below are the main ingredients in our products and a few highlights of their benefits. (By no means is this a comprehensive description of any particular ingredient, and information is sourced from several reputable books and websites.)
Sweet Almond Oil- a fine, emollient, non-drying fixed oil comes from the kernel of the sweet almond. This ordorless oil is used for softening and conditioning the skin and is great for dry, itchy skin.
Avocado oil- a thick, heavy green oil is semi-drying and comes from the flesh of the avocado. This rich oil is high in nutrients including vitamin E, fatty acids and potassium, which are said to contribute to the oils healing and regenerative properties. Avocado oil is reputed to be beneficial in healing scars, reducing age spots and moisturizing the upper layers of the skin-some studies have shown avocado oil increases the water soluble collagen content in the dermis, affecting the age of the skin.
Borage oil- has the highest known content of essential unsaturated fatty acids, including gamma linoleic acid (GLA) which is reputed to rejuvinate the skin. Unsaturated fatty acids are great skin conditioners as they regulate the hydration of the skin and act as humectants (reduces moisture loss)
Coconut oil- a semi-solid, saturated fat pressed from the meat of the coconut, this oil is a wonderful lubricant and moisturizer, especially for delicate eye, throat and decollatage areas.
Evening Primrose Oil- expressed from the seeds of the evening primrose herb, this oil contains gamma linoleic acid and many other vitamins and minerals which gives it nourishing, emollient, soothing and healing properties. Has been known to aid in healing acne, dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis and other inflammatory conditions.
Jojoba Oil- not a true oil, this yellow wax is pressed from the bean of a desert plant and is the most similar to the skin's own sebum. Containing a substance similar to collagen allows jojoba oil to penetrate deeply, which increases softness and can reduce lines and wrinkles for hours after use.
Meadowfoam Seed Oil- pressed from the seed of the Limnanthes alba, this non-greasy oil absorbs easily into the skin and moisturizes the skin in unique ways.
Peach Kernel Oil- a light, rich oil especially beneficial for dry, mature or sensitive skins. This non-greasy oil is emollient and conditioning due to the high content of vitamins and minerals.
Rice Bran Oil- pressed from the bran of rice kernels, this oil is a rich source of vitamin E complex, squalene (hydrating, soothing, non-irritating and non-comedogenic) and the unique antioxidant gamma-oryzanol- considered effective in absorbing ultraviolet light. This very emollient oil penetrates the skin very quickly and is excellent for dry, mature and sensitive skins.
Rosehip Oil- pressed from the seed and flesh of the wild or dog rose, this oil is a rich source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, and is high in GLA and vitamin C. This oil is reputed to renew skin cells and lessen scarring, is richly moisturizing and is used for stretch marks, burns, scars and mature, dry skin.
Natural Vitamin E Oil- a very impressive natural fat-soluble antioxidant, it is excellent for helping to fade scars. Is frequently used to stabilize and prevent oxidation in other oils (natural preservative).
Wheatgerm oil- expressed from the golden inner germ of wheat, the oil is richly nourishing, fine and healing, partly due to its high vitamin E content. This oil is very emollient and is helpful for dry, prematurely aged skin and for skin troubles such as eczema and psoriasis.
Shea Butter- an edible, moisturizing butter that is high in fatty acids (oleic, stearic, palmitic and lnolenic) that are essential for collagen production, this butter reduces skin inflammation and has anti-aging and anti-free radical properties. Has been known to restore eleasticity, reduce irritation, bumps, and stretch marks, boost circulation and providing relief from itchy, peeling skin.
Mango Butter- high in essential fatty acids and antioxidants, this butter is rich and nourishing, especially for mature skins. Naturally emollient and a mild lubricant.
Kokum Butter- rich in vitamins and nutrients including vitamin E, omega fatty acids 3 and 6 and polyunsaturated fats, this emollient and penetrative butter is anti bacterial, anti inflammatory and helps to enhance the skins natural barrier. Kokum butter is non-comodegenic and has anti oxidant properties that help heal damaged skin and is gentle on sensitive skin.
Argan Oil- rich in vatamin E, omega 6 and 9 fatty acids, COQ10, melatonin and plant sterols this oil has antioxidant and anti inflammatory properties. This oil has been used to increase skin elasticity and hydration and promote wound healing, reduce stretch marks and help with acne.
Raw Honey- a good source of anti oxidants, antibacterial and antifungal properties , aids in tissue regeneration and acts as a humectant.
Beeswax- secreted by bees and used to make the cell walls of honeycombs, is an emulsifier and binder.
Benzoin- has antiseptic, astringent, antifungal and protective properties, is also used as a preservative.
Arrowroot- a powdered starch available from the root of several plants, it is soothing to the skin, reduces odours, moisturizes the skin and helps to eliminate toxins.
Bentonite clay- a fine powder formed from volcanic ash, used in detoxification of skin and body. Bentonite clay contains natural minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron, which are all vital to health and many body functions.
Activated Charcoal- charcoal is activated by processing it at very high temperatures, changing its internal structure, reducing the size of its pores and increasing its surface area. Activated charcoal's negatively charged, porous texture helps trap toxins, preventing your body from absorbing them.