Words: Joshua Greenwood
It’s one of the first things you do in the morning and the last thing you do before bed: your skincare routine. In a mission to encourage a healthy and glowing complexion, lotions, moisturisers, creams and masks are applied to key areas of the skin, however, do you know what ingredients you are putting on your face and where they come from? We have listed some of the best ethical and natural ingredients to look out for when buying new products to add to your skincare regimen.
The increasingly popular organic ingredient, Shea Butter, is extracted from the nuts of the correspondingly named Shea tree. This rich ingredient is highly moisturising, aiding in giving the skin a youthful, vibrant glow. It is also an excellent palliative for dry skin, simulating the production of collagen while healing the skins surface to retain moisture. This has made it a beloved ingredient for skin conditions of all types. When combined with exfoliants, Shea Butter soothes the skin of irritation and redness, offering healing properties that can combat infection. It is often utilised for aid in a variety of skin troubles, including acne and eczema. Be sure, however, to only use unrefined Shea Butter as refined alternatives can lose their ability to soothe and calm.
The Shea Butter range from L’Occitane have teamed up with The Women of Burkina Faso who have been using Shea Butter for centuries to nourish and protect their hair and skin. Thus that have created a sustainable, fair trade supply chain that delivers supreme quality Shea Butter to your beauty routine.
The richest Manuka Honey is sourced exclusively from New Zealand and Australia. This specific type of honey is desired for its super moisturising effects, as well as its ability to treat acne. This is due to it containing very strong antioxidants and holding antibacterial properties, which unlike other honey, are extremely long-lasting.
ApiNourish Firm Skin Facial Moisturiser by Manuka Doctor contains the Manuka Honey from New Zealand, combined with the previously mentioned product Shea Butter. This combination instantly boosts moisturisation and elastin, firming, smoothing and lifting all in one.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is a classic and immensely popular natural skincare product that should be included in everyone’s skincare routine. Tea Tree as an essential oil that boasts anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, calming inflammation and irritation. It’s particularly effective as an acne treatment, whether used in its natural state, or added to other products. Its organic elements work to improve skin concerns such as breakouts and thus is extremely popular amongst spot treatments.
The Body Shop Tea Tree range is specifically designed as a targeting treatment, treating problem areas such as acne. All of the products in the range are cruelty free and 100% vegan. One of their most popular tea tree product is the Tea Tree night lotion which is enriched with Community Trade tea tree oil from the foothills of Mount Kenya and reduces blemishes overnight while hydrating oily skin, reducing excess oils.
Perfect for any skin type due to its abilities to attract and hold moisture, Hyaluronic Acid is one of the very best ingredients when it comes to skincare. The natural substance helps to keep your skin looking youthful and radiant, encouraging hydration. Due to this, Hyaluronic Acid is often found in moisturisers as it targets the surface of the skin to smooth and soften, diminishing the appearance of wrinkles.
The Ordinary have a lightweight, easily absorbed serum called Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5. This ultra-pure serum combines 3 types of hyaluronic acid which offers lasting hydration and visible plumping of the skin.
For centuries Green Tea has been praised for its health benefits, being used in a wide array of skincare and health products for good reason. Also known as green tea leaf extract, it contains antimicrobial and skin conditioning properties; calming irritation, diminishing the appearance of wrinkles and reducing redness. Whether it is used topically, or ingested, green tea can provide surprising benefits for the body and skin. From anti-aging properties to fighting cancer-causing free radicals, these are just a few of the benefits from adding green tea to your skin care routine.
The Facial Spray with Aloe, Cucumber and Green Tea by Mario Badescu is the perfect product to give your skin a refreshing glow. As it contains the Green Tea extract, it contains beneficial antioxidants infused with nutrient-rich botanicals that gives your skin a rejuvenating boost with each use.
Bearberry is one of nature’s most powerful skin brighteners. In addition to antioxidants, bearberry extract contains arbutin, which acts a lot like hydroquinone, another ingredient that is effective at skin brightening, and one of the most effective ingredients for fading dark spots. Jordan Herschthal, dermatologist stated that both the aforementioned ingredients “inhabit the tyrosinase enzyme involved in pigment production”
John Masters Oily Skin Bearberry Balancing & Toning Mist is an ultra-astringent product that balances pH, tightens pores and leaves the skin glowing and refreshed.
Well known in the beauty industry for its anti-inflammatory abilities, Eucalyptus Oil is used in a wide array of products as an effective antiseptic, helping with congestion. Because of this, eucalyptus oil can be very effective in healing wounds, burns, cuts, and acne, as well efficiently easing itch related problems such as those caused by insects (bites and stings).
The energising Body Oil by Espa combines a mixture of natural oils with Eucalyptus to enliven and energise, nourishing for beautifully soft, supple skin.
Clay is often found in a lot of skin treatments and masks, something that is extremely beneficial due to its calming and exfoliating properties. Clay, with consistent use in conjunction within an appropriate skin regimen, can ease irritation, helping to soothe the skin and leave it feeling refreshed by encouraging skin cell turnover. It can also work to extract and reduce the appearance of pores to reveal a healthy complexion, exfoliating the skin without the abrasive texture of other natural exfoliant ingredients. There are, however, several different types of clay used in products, some that are more appropriate for dry-normal skin, while others cater more for oily skin. This is something that needs to be tried and tested to find the best clay products for your skin type.
While the benefits of clay can be quite remarkable, using Clay products each day can be quite drying and tightening for the skin and should only be used once or twice a week.
The Deep Cleansing Mask by Omorovicza uses white clay to detoxify and brighten congested/oily skin. It contains their unique Healing Concentrate that leaves skin firmer, more supple and younger-looking as it delivers minerals deep into the skin. This mask is also Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten free and Phthalate free.