Welcome To Beauty 101!

Confused by the myriad of terms and buzzwords surrounding some of your favorite products and brands? You're not alone! We've created a helpful guide through some of the more commonly used terms you might find on products that we represent below.

First, a little insight into Natural & Organic as a Category

How Big is the Category? 13 billion dollars in 2018. Estimated to grow 8-10% per year putting the Natural Category at 22bn by 2024.
*Skincare growth in NPD for 2018 was led not by newness but by existing natural brands

  • Consumers look for natural and organic personal care products to support their wellness goals and healthy aspirations
    • Helps customers feel better about how they care for themselves
  • Conventional to organic switch usually happens due to a life-changing event (i.e. pregnancy, serious illness, etc.)
  • Millennials (18 – 34) are most likely to be influenced by increasing education and awareness about natural skincare, without a life-changing event prompting them
  • Customers making the switch from conventional to natural want:
    • Easy to understand and use (One Love Organics for example uses icons on their packaging)
    • Effective
    • Offers a pleasurable experience
  • Natural category is projected to grow at an 8.4% increase by 2022, whereas conventional is only expected to be growing at 4%

What does natural, organic, clean, really mean??

“Natural” and “Organic” have no legal definition.
Keep in mind non-synthetic ingredients that are found in nature, can be Harmful. ie. Lead

  • Natural – Primarily ingredients found in nature.* 
  • Organic – ingredients that are plant derived with other natural ingredients. Ingredients are grown without pesticides, herbicides, or synthetic fertilizers. 
  • Clean – Free of parabens, phthalates, sulfates, & petrochemicals.

“Off-Limit” Ingredients

  • GMOs
  • Parabens - Preservative used in cosmetics and pharmaceuticals
  • Sulfates - Cleaning agent. (derived from sulfuric acid)
  • Phthalates - Solvent. (derived from phthalic acid) 
  • Petrochemicals - Moisturize the skin, adds a smooth texture to the product, Extends shelf life. (derived from petroleum or natural gas) ie. Mineral Oil, Paraffin Wax, PEG (polyethylene glycol), *any ingredient ending in “eth”.
  • Phenoxyethanol (preservative)
  • Nanoparticles
  • Silicones
  • PEGs
  • Synthetic Perfumes & Dyes
  • Animal-Derived Ingredients (unless naturally produced by them: milk, honey, beeswax, etc.)
  • Non-Recyclable/Biodegradable Packaging


Certified Vegan - Just because a product has a certified cruelty-free logo printed on its label doesn’t mean it’s vegan. For a vegan skin care or beauty product you can trust, look for the Vegan Action or Vegan Awareness Foundation logo. Both of these logos certify that a product is formulated with vegan ingredients.

USDA Organic - For products formulated with organic ingredients, look for the certified organic or USDA organic symbol on the product label. That said, don’t be fooled by marketing. If you see the word “organic” and no certification on a label, it might not be organic. In order for a product to be considered ‘certified organic,’ the item must be 95% or higher free of synthetic additives like pesticides, chemical fertilizers and dyes.

Ecocert - Ecocert. If a product has an ecocert logo, it means it has been inspected by one of the highest respected organizations that determine if a product is organic. Ecocert is an organic certification organization based in Europe, but conducts inspections in over 80 countries. “It is one of the largest organic certification organizations in the world.

Cruelty Free International - Leaping Bunny logo, means that it’s globally recognized as cruelty-free and has gone through a variety of rigorous testing (which includes independent audits by Cruelty Free International). According to the organization, this is to ensure transparency between the brand and consumer, as brands often include cruelty-free jargon (and can go as far as to include a variation of a bunny logo) on the packaging without certification, causing confusion. To be sure your so-called “cruelty-free” product is legit, check the label for the specific Leaping Bunny logo associated with Cruelty Free International.

Skin 101

Cell Overview:

Squamous Cells - Thin, flat cells found on the surface of the skin.

Keratinocyte - Cells that product Keratin. They make up the majority of the epidermis and are responsible for Keeping Langerhancells (immunity cells) and lymphocytes (white blood cells used to fight infection) of the dermis in place.

Basal Cell - Basal cells continually divide and create new cells that fill the epidermis. *Sometimes called Basal Keratinocyte cells

Melanocyte - Cell responsible for creating pigment in the skin. The pigment -Melanin serves to protect the skin from UV light.

Macrophage - Type of white blood cell that seeks out and digests cellular debris, foreign substances, microbes, cancer cells and anything that does not contain proteins specific to healthy cells.

Mast Cell - Contains histamine and heparin –creates an immune response and is tied to wound healing as well as Defense against pathogens.

Dermal Dendritic Cell - Antigen-presenting cell. Main function is to processes antigen material and present it on the cell surface to the T cells ( T cells are lymphocyte cells produced by the Thymus gland) of the immune system. Essentially they are messengers, and aid in the immunity and overall health of the skin.

Fibroblast - Produces Collagen & elastin that creates the structural framework of the skin. Critical in wound healing.

Adipocyte - Fat storage cells.

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