Updated: Apr 1, 2020
If you want more out of your skincare ingredients, head toward the intersection of science and nature.
Do you want to achieve your best skin in 2020? Maybe it’s time to take a fresh approach to the way you view skincare ingredients. If you’re like many consumers, you’ve been paying closer attention in recent years to the ingredients used in your products and whether they are natural or synthetic. And while there’s no doubt that being more aware of what you put on your skin and in your body is a good thing, it can be hard to separate fact from myth, especially in the age of social media and online message boards.
If you’re serious about getting more from your skincare routine this year, leave the synthetic versus natural ingredient debate in the past where it belongs. Head into the new year free of the skincare misconceptions and clichés that all too often get mistaken as fact. We spoke with members of Forever Living’s Scientific Advisory Board to provide you with the facts about what really makes skincare products effective and to dispel all the myths that could be keeping you from your best results.
Next time you find yourself shopping form skincare products, don't automatically assume that the all-natural options on the shelf are safer.
Why natural doesn’t always mean better
There’s been a trend recently of consumers wanting more natural and organic skincare options. When the word natural appears on a label, it’s often accompanied by imagery of leaves moist with dew or the vibrant colors of freshly bloomed flowers – things we consider beautiful and wholesome. And while a demand for more natural and organic products has led to important advancements in skincare, it has also helped fuel a very common misconception: natural is always better.
The answer is not quite so simple, but there’s no shortage of people who seem to be convinced that natural is always better. In fact, a recent study shows that around half of women buying skincare products actively seek out products with natural or organic ingredients. But the presence of science-based ingredients shouldn’t send anyone running for the hills, especially when you consider that those ingredients probably make the product more effective, safe and stable. In fact, you’ll find you often need to give something up in exchange for an all-natural product like efficacy, performance or the product experience.
“In the realm of skincare, public perception may often be that natural ingredients are more pure and kinder than something developed in a lab,” says Dr. Wallace Hayes, a toxicologist and member of Forever Living’s Scientific Advisory Board. “Nothing could be farther from the truth.
” While there’s no doubt that nature provides many powerful and beneficial ingredients like vitamins, minerals and botanicals, it also gives us things like mold and bacteria. So, it’s no surprise that all-natural and organic products are more susceptible to spoilage and have a far shorter shelf life than products made with a combination of natural and synthetic ingredients.
Next time you find yourself shopping for skincare products, don’t automatically assume that the all-natural options on the shelf are safer. Shop for the benefits and consider how the ingredients are going to help you get the results you want, rather than worrying about which ingredients may or may not be considered all natural. If the overall effectiveness and stability of a product is improved by synthetic ingredients, that’s a good thing.
Modern myth: synthetic ingredients are bad
With more emphasis on natural ingredients, there’s a misconception that synthetic or unnatural ingredients must somehow be bad.
“Unfortunately, consumers often consider synthetic ingredients as being unhealthy or not safe,” says Dr. Roger Clemens, a nutritionist and member of Forever Living’s Scientific Advisory Board. “Many consumers also have the misconception that human-made ingredients contribute to diseases such as cancer, diabetes and even obesity.”
These rumors can easily spiral out of control online and give synthetic ingredients a bad reputation.
Dr. Clemens points out that many natural ingredients can cause skin sensitivities that intensify over time. In fact, he says, people are far more likely to have an allergic reaction to unprocessed natural ingredients. Processed natural ingredients or synthetic versions of the same ingredients can be created with all the benefits, but none of the allergens.
The truth is that there are natural and synthetic ingredients that are healthy and those that could be considered unhealthy. That’s why it’s important to purchase skincare products from a company that evaluates every ingredient to not only ensure it provides the best possible results but is safe to use as well.
The intersection of nature and science
Natural and synthetic ingredients tend to get demonized online by people who feel strongly about one being better than the other. But the truth is, both natural and synthetic ingredients can be incredibly powerful and beneficial.
If you’ve asked yourself which is better, the answer is neither. In fact, the idea that someone should only use all-natural or all synthetic ingredients isn’t only outdated, but counterproductive. If there’s one thing that can make even the best natural ingredients better, it’s science. This is not only true for skincare. Nutritional supplements have been made more effective and powerful thanks to the combination of nature and science.
When advanced equipment and technology are implemented, natural ingredients can be enhanced to bring out more of the beneficial qualities of an ingredient. These processes help reduce allergens and protect the final product against bacterial contamination, improving the effectiveness.
Unfortunately, consumers often consider synthetic ingredients as being unhealthy or not safe...
Combining science and nature also makes skincare products more consistent. Truly organic ingredients that don’t undergo any type of processing can be very volatile and vary in potency. This could mean that two batches of the same product could provide a very different experience. Even the color and consistency of a product can change, along with the results.
Thanks to technology, natural ingredients can be stabilized, enhanced, or replicated synthetically to harness all the benefits consistently so you know the products in your routine will always deliver the same results.
When the latest technology is used to make natural ingredients even better, the consumer wins. When you are reading the label, don’t be afraid of science-based ingredients – seek them out! You’ll see better results when you embrace the powerful benefits you’ll experience when science is used to boost and preserve the benefits of nature.