When visiting the beauty counter or ordering online, have you noticed the increased presence of self-care products that claim to be natural, organic, clean, vegan, cruelty-free, free-from, and plant-based? The consumer push for more eco-friendly options continues to shape both existing and emerging brands in their advocating and promotion of sustainable lifestyles. Most of these terms we have grown familiar with but free-from is a relatively new one that is used in natural and organic-based skin and self-care. Do you know what it means?
What Does It Mean to Be Free-From?
The term free-from is relatively broad and can be used in relation to various product categories such as foods, self-care, and cosmetics to indicate that the product does not contain certain ingredients. The term has become a buzzword in celebrity culture and health and wellness circles.
Generally, free-from should indicate that the product is better for your health, although there are other reasons some may choose to buy free-from. Some added chemicals, in self-care especially, can induce allergic reactions or skin irritation. The question of environment and sustainability also makes free-from products a more appealing choice for consumers, as they tend to use ethically sourced and plant-based ingredients.
Top 10 Toxic Ingredients to Avoid
It would become your full-time job if you wanted to know every cosmetic ingredient’s safety or toxicity profile! Here are The Good Face Project’s Top Ten toxic ingredients to avoid at all costs:
- Parabens like Propylparaben and Iosbutylparaben
- Chemical UV filters Octinoxate and Oxybenzone
- Diethanolamine (DEA)
- Phthalates like Dibutyl phthalate
- Sodium laureth sulfate (SLS)
- Polyethylene (PEGs) like PEG-10 laurate
- Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA)
Scientific research on cosmetic ingredient safety is constantly evolving, and this trustworthy website strives to keep up with the findings.
Who Determines What Is Free-From?
In Canada, we rely on CertClean for verifying and providing the qualifications for safe brands and products. CertClean does not certify those with only some organic ingredients, but only those that are free-from. Instead, they look for hundreds of specific ingredients that pose a risk to the body’s hormonal, reproductive and neurological systems.
Those ingredients include talcum powder, formaldehyde-releasing preservatives, parabens, sulphates, and more. Standards for using these ingredients are less strict in the United States, which is why we have been loving Santa Monica-based brand Beautycounter. Their Never-List contains over 1,800 ingredients that are never used in their formulas!
Why Choose Free-From?
Better for YOU!
Synthetic products can present problems for the skin and body. As well as containing potentially allergy-inducing ingredients, they can often cause skin irritation and unseen internal effects. Anything you put on your skin will eventually seep through and into your bloodstream. If you put harmful ingredients on your skin, they will ultimately be harmful to your health. We believe that beauty moves from the inside out, and the better the ingredients you put in, the better you will look and feel over time!
Better for the PLANET!
As well as being harmful to you, chemical and synthetic ingredients are harmful to plants and animals. If these chemicals are not disposed of properly, they can seep into ground and water supplies, damaging surrounding ecosystems. However, certain sourcing and production methods are also harmful to the environment. Mining and extraction practices negatively impact land and contribute to a larger carbon footprint. Natural products do not require these processes, as they use plant-based ingredients and often prioritize sustainable sourcing practices.
It is BENEFICIAL!
You do not have to take any chances with your health when using free-from products. Instead of using ones with synthetic ingredients, you can use just as effective plant-based alternatives. These products come packed with beneficial ingredients for both the skin and body. Most of these products contain vitamins such as D, C, A, and E, plant-based extracts and oils that enhance and improve your body’s functions.
… and best of all: CRUELTY-FREE!
While many brands have now turned away from animal testing, many still heavily used these practices in the past. Natural self-care and free-from brands ensure that the products they are providing you do not come at the expense of any animal.
Follow EcoLuxLifestyle.co for our weekly beauty stories for brand and product recommendations that will benefit your skin, hair, and overall health!
- As Editor-in-Chief of EcoLuxLifestyle Magazine, Gio showcases and shines spotlights on Canadian brands and women-led businesses that promote sustainable lifestyles through innovative products and offerings. She is also an assistant editor for additional EcoLuxLuv Communications titles including Folio.YVR, Portfolio.YVR, and West Coast Weddings.
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