Organic Natural Paraben free Clean beauty products: a necessity or trend?

Organic Natural Clean beauty skincare industry

Have you become used to these words ? – ‘Natural’ beauty; ‘Clean’ beauty; ‘Organic’ beauty. Well! Why not? Organic/Natural/Clean beauty market has exploded because we are scared of chemicals. Tons of beauty brands label their products as natural, non-toxic, green/clean because they are free from ParabensPhthalatesSulfatesPEG compoundsPetrochemicals & Mineral Oils as well as Synthetic Fragrances & Dyes.

But let me tell you one thing, those terms don’t mean anything because they’re not regulated by the FDA. FDA only has minimal oversight of the beauty industry. For the most part, beauty companies regulate themselves with the help of third party certifications like (USDA, ECOCERT, MadeSafe etc).

Why are people so obsessed with natural & organic products?

The reason is people have become more health conscious and look for eating only healthy stuff while doing yoga’s and exercises. They just think their skincare the same way & fall into the marketing gimmicks of natural & healthy skincare products. My Gawwd!!!!

Whenever I find someone saying – “Don’t put something on your skin which you can’t eat”. I just hold my head & feel like burring it somewhere or isolate myself from such people.

The Truth about Organic/Natural Beauty

The belief that organic and natural ingredients are good for skin, has no factual basis or scientific justification. The sad truth is there are a lot of organic ingredients which are not safe for skin. But there are some really good natural ingredients which are beneficial too.

The only issue is our assumption which make us think that natural is better than synthetic. For ex: Synthetic fragrance oils are bad but natural fragrances of plant based oils are fine in skincare products. The worst reality is even natural fragrances of plant based ingredients can cause you allergic reactions. In short, either natural or synthetic, all fragrances causes issues or skin in a longer run.

The certification agencies like ECOCERT/USDA etc itself says that being organic doesn’t make an ingredient efficient or safer. They just assure that these are produced without use of pesticides, herbicides, synthetic fertilizers or antibiotics. They can’t really claim of its healthy nutrition or safety.

Myths about Organic/Natural Skincare Products

  • Organic products do not cause allergies. Having a younger skin, you might not observe the sensitivity caused by essential oils on skin. But they can seriously trouble your skin in a longer run. I am 31 and I have faced allergic reactions with essential oils.
  • Natural products are environmental friendly. Just because the brand has used environmental friendly packaging & has plant based ingredients doesn’t mean you are doing a bit for the environment. With increase in demand of organic products, there could be a shortage of land. This would lead brands to source their ingredients from heavy use of pesticides & chemical soil preparation.
  • I will get a healthy skin with organic plant based products. Well, slathering plant based concentrated oils daily on your skin just because it is full of anti-oxidants, only going to clog your pores and lead to acne causing bacteria. Instead gulping a fruit daily from the same plant will surely be giving you a healthy skin & body.
  • I use organic clean products as I support cruelty free. This is not an excuse anymore because a lot of other brands with non organic products too are going cruelty free. They test on humans at least to assure the safety of their products. Indian organic brands just don’t test anywhere & assume that it is safe for you.
  • I use natural products because they are free from harmful chemicals. Clean brands normally name them as natural because they are free from paraben, sulphates etc. Parabens are required in water based products to prevent them from fungus & bacteria. There is no scientific proof of them being “endocrine disruptor”. The point is just to eliminate the use of parabens or making a preservative free product, many organic brands are selling cocktails of plant based oils in the form of serums (which doesn’t even penetrate into your skin & provide you any benefit). They just sit on your skin & make it more sensitive towards environment.

The truth about preservatives

Just some random studies published by researchers gave the tag of harmful to commonly used preservatives like paraben, SLS, folmaldehyde etc. The research is done using a high amount of product under testing which obviously shows harmful results. After all we know excess of everything is harmful. Even researchers says there is no conclusive data that these preservatives hurt us. Just because a paraben is found in a breast cancer tissue doesn’t mean it has caused the cancer. No one has tested presence of paraben in a healthy tissue.

A lot depends on the amount of dose brands use in their products. For eg: “the likelihood of formaldehyde causing cancer in humans at the dose that you’re exposed to from washing your hair is essentially zero.” But a doubt has been planted in our hearts & we started believing it. Brands started removing it from their products & marking them as natural/organic.

But does removing these preservatives actually make the end product harmless? Just because a product is paraben free doesn’t mean it is safe. It must be having any other preservatives (alternatives to paraben) which can also be irritating to your skin. Also, multiple preservatives (like organic acids, EO etc) are required to be added in order to preserve the product from both bacteria & fungi which can also irritate the skin.

Or you are thinking of preservative free products? That’s the most troubled thing for your skin. They tend to oxidize easily causing reactions on skin & you have to finish them in a month or two which is almost impossible.

Are all Organic/Natural Products bad?

Not really. There are a lot of natural ingredients like Honey, Olive, Glycerin, Aloe vera, pomegranate, Chamomile, Propolis, Oats, Soy, Shea butter, Carrier oils like Tamanu oil, Rosehip oil, Hemp seed oil, Jojoba oil, Black seed oil etc which have proven benefits for your skin. They provide positive effects to your skin without showing much negative results. Though they are not the only ones on which you can rely on. There are some really good synthetically derived alternatives of natural like AHA, BHA, Hyaluronic acid, Ceramides etc which works equally well for skin.

In short, neither all synthetic ingredients are bad nor all organic/natural ingredients are good. All you have to do is to choose what is beneficial for your skin without much side-effects in a longer run.

The bad natural ingredients for your sensitive skin

I want you to take through some really irritating natural ingredients which can cause problems for acne prone sensitive skins. Even if you don’t have sensitive skin but you never know if these ingredients on regular use can cause u irreversible sensitization. These ingredients might be beneficial but they could have equally negative impacts on your skin. So its better to avoid them.

  • Citrus ingredients like bergamot, sweet orange or bitter orange, grapefruit, lemon, lime, mandarin may interact with sun exposure leading to rashes and pigmentation.
  • Mints such as peppermint oil, wintergreen, balm mint, pennyroyal, lemon balm etc can cause irritation on skin. They are only good to heal specific body ache.
  • Irritating ingredients like lavendar, Fennel essential oil, Cypress, neroli, Basil, Cinnamon, Lemongrass, Eucalyptus, Sage, Thyme essential oil, Coriander oil, Geranium EO, Witch Hazel, Clove, Ylang Ylang, Rose EO, Rosemary, Cottonseed oil are well known skin sensitizing ingredients with very less benefits. They are more harmful when used in concentrated oil forms.
  • Comedogenic ingredients like Almond extract, Wheat germ oil, Algae extract, carrot seed oil, Fractionated Coconut Oil, Palm kernel oil, Cocoa butter, coconut butter etc can clog skin pores and thus acne prone skin should avoid using them.

Worst Indian organic/natural/Clean skincare products for sensitive/acne prone skin

Based on above apprehensions I have shared with you guys regarding Indian organic/natural skincare products available in beauty industry. I am sharing the list of worst organic Indian products you would ever try for your skin esp. sensitive skins or acne prone skin types. Leave in organic products can cause more harm than wash off ones & that’s why I will be focusing only on most potent harmful organic skincare products.

bad indian organic skincare products

Please note that I have nothing against brands and this list is solely based on my experience with products or the ingredients list mentioned on the label.

Juicy Chemistry Facial Oils

All juicy chemistry facial oils (Helichrysum & Rosehip oil, Saffron & Red Raspberry oil, Kakadu plum & Pomegranate oil, Frankincense & Hemp oil ) claims to penetrate deep into skin & target skin concerns. I don’t know who in the world would believe that thick oils can penetrate deep into skin to address skin issues?

My second concern is the number of essential oils present in them. Each facial oil contains a blend of around 5-7 irritant/photo-sensitive EO like lavendar, neroli, clove, orange, lemon etc along with carrier oils. The frankinsence & hemp one contains a blend of 9 essential oils which can possibly create an irreversible sensitization to skin. I tried helichrysum one from JC in the past. Its such a thick oil & ended up in making my skin look dark & dull.

Vilvah face serums

Vilvah anti-acne serum is a blend of 8 essential oils which includes highly irritating lavendar, rosemary & peppermint essential oil also in a blend of 2 carrier oils (jojoba oil & argan oil). Now, can someone please tell me why this product is named as a serum given that it has 0% qualities of a serum. Even their Moringa beautifying serum is a facial oil with no benefits of addressing skin issues except preventing moisture loss from skin. But you never know what harm these potent blend of essential oils can do to your skin esp. if you are a sensitive or acne prone skin person.

If you are still confused about using essential oils in skincare is good or bad. Please refer this article from a renowned brand.

Suganda face serums

A brand which will forever remain in my heart not because I loved it but because the damage it did to my skin barrier. The brand claims that it’s products are suitable for sensitive skins but I just can’t agree to it. Its exfoliating serums are the worst products I have tried in my life. They just damaged my skin barrier & made my skin look so dark & dull. Their antioxidant serum becomes ineffective after 1 month of use & makes skin look dark.

After having a bad experience with their serums, I explored more products on their website. Every product contains irritant essential oils & that’s why they never impressed me.

Soulflower AHA Repair Serum

I just can’t believe that an essential oil can be used as a base in a facial product untill I saw the ingredient list of Soulflower AHA 30% Repair Serum which contains tea tree oil as the first ingredient. Apart from that there are around 8-9 citrus based fruit extracts; any of which can cause sensitivities to not so tolerant skin or allergic to any one particular fruit. I would never opt for such concentrated organic formulation for my acne prone skin.

Ethiko face serums

Ethiko is another brand which mimics juicy chemistry by only creating products full of carrier oils and essential oils. Again, another brand which calls a facial oil as serum and fool the audience. If you check the ingredient list of their face serums, almost all of them contain same 4 carrier oils having a blend of around different 6-9 EO in each product. By just adding a few different EO in same blend of carrier oils, they name their products as Age defying serum, Oil control serum, brightening serum blah blahh.. & what not?

No creative formulations!!! Only an organic brand with full of organic oils claiming to improve & address different skin concerns. Now, such brands get a preservative free tag & audience just fall into it. Why the hell they will be needing any preservatives as there is only oils in their so called organic products.

Bubble farm Cleansing balm & Face oil

Whenever I see a non-beneficial ingredient among first 3 ingredients on the list, I just feel like slathering the entire product on brand owner herself. Bubble farm different cleansing balms contain EO as the 2nd ingredient in the list. For eg: Jasmine EO is the 2nd ingredient in their gotu kola jasmine cleansing balm which will only perform cleansing activity. Jasmine EO doesn’t have any proven benefits for skin & its a major irritant for sensitive skins.

Bubble farm face glow oil contains a blend of all possible Essential oils one would ever think of applying on his skin. It contains around 13 EO out of which rose, jasmine, fennnel, lavendar etc are the top irritants. So, if you ask for more glow, indian organic brands gonna add the more EO to their products. 😀 Its other face oils (anti-acne, oil control & intense hydration) have a little less but still they too made it to my worst organic products list. Someone please tell them oils won’t help in keeping skin hydrated.

Sapphire Botanics Glow Night Elixir

Does adding lot of oils to a single product guarantee brightness on the skin? Well, I am not the one who believe in this shit because oil just can’t penetrate deeply into skin to show their effects. This night elixir oil from Sapphire is a blend of 9 carrier oils ( Rosehip, Baobab, Argan, Walnut, Tamanu, Blackseed, Apricot, Hemp, Flaxseed) and 5 EO ( Tea Tree, Bitter Orange, Lime, Lavender & Rose). If somehow you got an allergy from the product, how would you able to identify the culprit from such a big list of oils? Better to not risk your skin for this oil.

Qurez Bakuchiol – Revitalizing Facial Oil

Though I really appreciate the brand mentioning the % of oils used in their facial oil which most of the brands never care to reveal. But I will still ask sensitive skin people to stay away from using this bakuchiol facial oil which claims to give benefits of a retinol. The reason is product contains 4% blend of essential oils (Vetiver, Sweet lime, Lavendar, Peppermint & Turmeric) which can irritate the acne prone skins as their tolerance level is very low. The product contains highly irritating oils like lime, lavendar & peppermint.

Other Indian brands Face Serums/Moisturizers

I have recently came across St botanica through Amazon which have wide range of natural skincare. Its really disheartening that brand doesn’t mention the complete ingredient list used in their products. They make a good range of VitC, retinol and Hyaluronic acid based products but none of the products contain the information about the ingredient derivatives & the % of active concentration used in them.

Not only this brand, there are other famous Indian organic/natural/ayuvedic brands like Mamaearth, forest essentials, Dot& key, Organic harvest, Glamaroma, Indulgeo essentials, Deyga organics, Mcaffeine, Biotique, Roop mantra etc who doesn’t reveal the complete ingredients list used in their products on their websites. This makes me really skeptic about using their leave in products like serums/moisturizers.

Conclusion

The above mentioned worst organic skincare products list might have worked well for some of you but there are very high chances of these products not suiting you if you have a sensitive acne prone skin.

All I want to say that just the 2-3 famous tags like ayurvedic, organic, natural, clean etc etc doesn’t decide if a product is good enough for your skin. There is nothing like chemical free products & almost all brands contain preservatives in one or the other form which they don’t care to mention on their labels. That’s why its important to check complete ingredient list on every product available online/offline before buying such products.

Preservatives free organic brands does nothing but prepare a water free concentrated formula full of oils which can cause your skin serious allergies.

I would highly suggest you to avoid such potent blend of too many oils in a single product because you will end up harming it more (Tried and tested as per my experience). Also, if you won’t store those preservative free products carefully, they tend to oxidize more easily causing your skin more harm. I still appreciate these brands for mentioning complete ingredients list on their websites.

I too agree that every skin is different and what may not work for me might work for you. This post is all about creating awareness among people regarding organic, natural and clean beauty. It should be chosen intelligently by seeing the ingredient list and not just few eye satisfying labels like paraben free, natural botanics, non toxic, ayurvedic blah blah blah….

Leave a comment if you want me to do analysis on any organic/natural product which you feel is not worthy enough to put on your skin. I will add it to the worst skincare products list if it qualifies the ingredient list.

Follow me on IG @thespokenreviewer for crisp blunt reviews.

23 thoughts on “Organic Natural Paraben free Clean beauty products: a necessity or trend?

  1. Great work. I am one of these who have used these facial oils. But I absolutely no objection to ur view points. Keep sharing Great work.
    Now plzz share the best of organic too.😃😅.
    Thnks
    Bliss_n_blessings

    1. Thank you so much. Sharing best of organics would be a little tough for me. But yeah I will definitely share best of skincare products which acne prone sensitive skins can use without much fear of side effects. 😛 😛 Hope you understood what I mean. 🙂

  2. The blog post is extremely detailed, and I can really see the efforts and research that goes behind making this one. Let me share a few things now-
    1. Eating and skincare are completely different. In fact, I believe eating almonds to be more beneficial than applying them on face. Primarily because our body consumes every part of it which topical application on skin can not. Also, packets of chips, jams, juices, all these have preservatives. And, sugars for scrubs is a big ‘NO’ for face, which a lot of brands use.
    2. Preservative free is an entirely wrong concept, and even if your products are preservative-free, this should not be the marketing point. Broad spectrum preservatives are must.
    3. . I prefer to avoid EOs in my skincare, and I don’t understand the point of them being present. EOs are not preservatives either. I used a serum once, with 11 EOs (2%) but I never felt confident using it, so it went into diffuser for some fragrance.
    4. I had this thing for people/brand calling facial oils as serums. On one hand, they suggest rosehip oil as last step (as facial oil) and on another hand, they suggest rosehip oil before moisturiser (as serum).
    5. Its not always the brands that do this. People come as ask brands ‘is it preservative free’ and upon explaining them how it should NOT be a question, they respond ‘Ohh! but is it preservative free?’. At this point, even brands have to respond the the customer in the words they want to hear. Similarly, someone once asked me about open pores and after writing 40-50 words response on how pores size can’t be reduced, I received a response saying, ‘Please suggest me products for closing pores’.

    I can write much more, but then, it’ll become another post. 😛

    1. Thanks for sharing your view points. I absolutely agree with you here. And yes its not the brands fault standalone, increase in demand of organic natural from people have given this clean beauty a big attention. Some genuine brands even feel helpless when people don’t understand that the facts and just look for preservatives free products. Some things are good for your stomach and its a bummer when u waste them on your skin where you hardly gets any benefit from them on applying topically. while some are good for applying topically and may not be good for eating. Let’s not just generalize the concept of clean beauty. Thanks 🙂

  3. The suganda bha exfoliator harmed my skin barrier a lot that even after completing a bottle,I believed and got another bottle… that’s when I read your post on it and immediately stopped and applied only Aloe gel to repair my skin barrier …THEY ARE NOT SENSITIVE SKIN SAFE…and coming to EOs,a very big thanks to u for saving my skin…iam not going near a product even if it has one EO…keep going ma’am …you are doing awesome ❤️

    1. Suganda bha serum , I couldn’t finish their 1st bottle and just threw it because it got oxidized really easily even when I kept it in a dark area away from sunlight. I am so happy that you find it useful. Also, aloe gel is not sufficient enough to repair skin barrier. You also need good emollients and occlusives in order to repair your skin. Do research about them on google.

  4. This was such an helpful post 😁 i 1st scrolled down to read the worst organic products and then went back to read the whole article.

  5. Hi Avni thanks a lot for the detailed post. Was looking forward to it since you mentioned on instagram. I’m relatively new to the concept of facial oils and ybp plant remedy was my first purchase. All was good for 2-3 weeks pf regular night time use after which I started breaking out on the chin area. That’s when I came across you earlier posts on facial oils so wanted to skip using it and it did stop my breakouts. Next I tried kalyashastras tejo gritha and the same saga repeated. I contacted the brand as I really liked how the oil helped a few dry patches on other areas of my face and wanted it to work somehow. They have suggested diluting it with coconut oil and using. I’m yet to do that. Do you by any chance have any inputs to share? Thanks a lot

    1. YBP plant remedy I would never apply on my skin because I have oily acne prone sensitive skin. Though I am no body to comment on the product but I don’t think its a worthy product to be used on oily/acne prone skin types. It might serve the purpose for dry non acne prone skin types. Also I would suggest you to not use coconut oil on face as it is a heavy comedogenic oil and might aggravate your pimples. I would suggest you to stop using the oil if you are facing sensitivities with it because it has irritating EO like geranium EO. Blue tansy is a good ingredient and has anti inflammatory propeties but I would say its extract is much better than using EO directly. I will add geranium EO to the list of irritating ingredients.
      Thanks.

  6. This is indeed true! I really don’t follow organic, clean, cruelty free concepts! I buy products which i think or read it will work! I tried a famous brand which are hand made, i really regretted buying it and I returned it!

    1. Yeah I absolutely agree with you. Sometimes a lot of hype and marketing gimmicks make people to buy such products. I have observed that a lot of non-genuine brands spend more on marketing and PR while a lot of genuine brands focus on their formulations and less PR because they have trust on their products. Though its totally exceptional and I don’t want to generalize things.

  7. This was such an eye opener and I can’t thank you enough for this post as some of them were on my wishlist and i heard people raving about it. This was such a careful analysis and detailed post about the facts which many are unaware of

  8. Ahmaaaazing!!!! Girl, I’m so happy that someone finally was able to speak up and slam these brands which are fooling us! I’m so proud of you Avni! ❤️❤️😍
    (P.S. I was hoping YBP would also fall in the list with all their “this potent plant elixir is all that you need and is originated directly from the plant source with love. If you may not see results, be patient and heal yourself from within” shit lines🤣🤣)

    ***I seriously loved this article. Sharing this asap!***

    1. Thank you dear. The reason YBP is not there because there are many more such brands exist today with all plant based oils. I have prepared the list of worst products after seeing the long list of oils present in them. Though there are more such products like mask, cleansers, moisturizers who are not good enough to put on skin but who am I to call them worst without trying them out. Also, I am not the one who would ever give a try to ybp oil but since there ingredient list is short and too many oils are not there in that, I skipped it from my worst products list.
      I hope you got my point. 🙂

  9. Thankyou for this knowledge ❤️🌈Applying almond/ olive/ rosehip or coconut oil as last skincare step is wrong?
    & Rosehip oil doesnt help with axne scars?

    1. Rosehip oil is not an essential oil dear. Its a good oil to lighten acne scars but yes it always depend on the formulation you use.

    2. Not all oils suit every skin type. Like coconut oil should not be applied to oily acne prone skin. while hemp seed oil is good for acne prone skin. So u have to choose oils as per your skin type. Soem skins just cant stand oils at all.

  10. I am completely new to skincare routine and was exploring and googling all the terminology. Your post helped me in eliminating few options and brands.
    Very good post, keep up the good work. Such post helps people like me who want to begin skin care routine

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