Aqua (Deionized Water), Decyl Glucoside, Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Vera), Dimethyl Sulfone (MSM), Lavandula Officinalis (Lavender Water), Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Charcoal Powder (Bamboo Charcoal Powder), Organic Olea Europaea (Olive Oil), Organic Rosa Canina (Rose Hip Oil), Borago Officinalis (Borage Oil), Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange Peel Tincture), Origanum Compactum (Oregano Oil), Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree Oil), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit Seed), Organic Calendula Officinalis (Calendula), Origanum Arctium Lappa (Burdock Root), Organic Trifolium Pratense (Red Clover), Organic Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary), Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola Extract), Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant Extract), Pelagonium Gravoleons (Wild Geranium Extract), Organic Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion Extract), Cocamide Mipa, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Disodium Lauryl Sulfosuccinate, Hydroxyethyl Ethylcellulose, Carrageenan, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin.

Decyl Glucoside: Decyl glucoside is a mild non-ionic surfactant used in cosmetic formularies, including baby shampoo and in products for individuals with sensitive skin. Many natural personal care companies use this cleanser because it is plant-derived, biodegradable, and gentle for all skin types.

Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Vera)

Burns: For minor burns, apply aloe vera gel to the affected area up to three times daily. You may also need to protect the area with gauze.

Sunburn: While aloe vera helps soothe sunburn, researchTrusted Source shows that it’s not an effective way to prevent sunburn, so make sure you wear sun protection every day!

Dry skin: Aloe vera gel absorbs easily, making it ideal for oily skin. However, it can help treat dry skin, too. Consider swapping out your regular moisturizer for aloe after bathing to help seal moisture into your skin.

Eczema: The moisturizing effects of aloe can help alleviate dry, itchy skin associated with eczema. Aloe vera gel may also help alleviate seborrheic dermatitis. While this oily form of eczema is most often found in the scalp, it can also affect parts of your face and behind the ears, too.

Psoriasis: As with eczema, aloe vera may help alleviate inflammation and itchiness from psoriasis. For best results, apply aloe vera gel twice daily to the affected area of skin.

Inflammatory acne: Due to the anti-inflammatory effects of aloe vera, the gel may help treat inflammatory forms of acne, such as pustules and nodules. Apply the gel with a cotton swab directly to the pimple three times daily. The insides of an aloe plant’s leaves are the most potent form of aloe vera gel.

Clears acne: Using fresh aloe on your face may help clear up acne. You can also purchase aloe products designed for acne, including cleansers, toners, and creams. These may have the extra benefit of containing other effective ingredients, too.

Acne products made with aloe may be less irritating to the skin than traditional acne treatments.

A small 2014 study found that a cream combining conventional acne medication with aloe vera gel was significantly more effective than acne medication alone or a placebo in treating mild to moderate acne

Dimethyl Sulfone (MSM)

Aging skin. Early research shows that taking MSM might help to reduce wrinkles on the face and make the skin appear smooth.

A skin condition that causes redness on the face (rosacea). Research shows that applying an MSM cream to the skin twice daily for one month can improve redness and other symptoms of rosacea.

People also apply MSM to the skin to try to treat problems such as:

  • Scar tissue or stretch marks
  • Wrinkles
  • Wind or sun burn
  • Wounds, cuts, or abrasions
  • Rosacea

Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a naturally occurring organosulfur compound utilized as a complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) under a variety of names including dimethyl sulfone, methyl sulfone, sulfonylbismethane, organic sulfur, or crystalline dimethyl sulfoxide [1]. Prior to being used as a clinical application, MSM primarily served as a high-temperature, polar, aprotic, commercial solvent, as did its parent compound, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) [2].

Lavandula Officinalis (Lavender Water)

Lavender Flower Water introduces a great care for delicate, irritated and sensitive skin. It is ideal for combination and oily skin, acne prone skin, effectively fights eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis.

Lavender oil can benefit the skin in numerous ways. It has the ability to lessen acne, help lighten skin, and reduce wrinkles. It can even be used to treat other things, like improving hair health and digestion.

Lavender oil for acne

Lavender oil works to kill bacteria, and this can prevent and heal acne breakouts. It unclogs pores and reduces inflammation when you put it on your skin. To use lavender oil for acne, dilute it in coconut oil or another carrier oil and apply it to your skin after washing your face.

You can also use lavender oil as a facial toner by mixing two drops of lavender oil with one teaspoon of witch hazel. Soak a cotton ball in the blend and then gently rub it over your face. For a particularly stubborn pimple. Mix one drop of lavender oil with a drop of argan oil and put it directly onto a pimple twice a day.

Soothes eczema and dry skin

Eczema can show up anywhere on your body. With eczema, your skin gets dry, itchy, and scaly. It can appear mild or chronic and in multiple locations. Since lavender has antifungal properties and reduces inflammation, it can help keep eczema at bay.

Lavender oil can also be used to treat psoriasis. The lavender oil helps cleanse your skin and lessen redness and irritation.

To use this essential oil for eczema, mix two drops with an equal amount of tea tree oil, along with two teaspoons of coconut oil. You can use it daily.

Lavender oil skin lightening

Lavender oil can aid in skin lightening since it reduces inflammation. It can reduce discoloration, including dark spots. Lavender oil helps lessen blotchiness and redness. If you have hyperpigmentation on your skin, lavender oil may be able to help with that as well.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine

Cocamidopropyl betaine (CAPB) is an amphoteric synthetic detergent that has been increasingly used in cosmetics and personal hygiene products (eg, shampoos, contact lens solutions, toothpaste detergents, makeup removers, bath gels, skin care products, cleansers, liquid soaps, antiseptics, and gynecologic and anal hygiene products) because it induces relatively mild skin irritation. Delayed T-cell-mediated type IV hypersensitivity reactions to CAPB have been reported, and contact sensitization prevalence is estimated at between 3.0 and 7.2%. The increasing rates of sensitization led to CAPB's being named Allergen of the Year in 2004. Related impurities rendered during the manufacturing process (such as amidoamine and dimethylaminopropylamine) are thought to play a role in sensitization.

Cocamidopropyl betaine (aka CAPB) is a naturally-derived, sticky yellow liquid with a slightly “fatty” odor. To produce CAPB, raw coconut oil is combined with a colorless liquid called dimethylaminopropylamine to create a “surfactant.” In countless cleaning and personal care products, surfactants break the surface tension in water, attach to dirt, and rinse it away.

Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine

Cocamidopropyl hydroxysultaine (CAHS) is a synthetic amphoteric surfactant from the hydroxysultaine group. It is found in personal care products (soaps, shampoos, lotions etc.).[1] It has uses as a foam booster, viscosity builder, and an antistatic agent.[1]

Charcoal Powder (Bamboo Charcoal Powder)

Activated charcoal is an odorless black powder made from common charcoal that’s been exposed to heat. Heating the charcoal to a high temperature causes little pockets or holes to form, making it highly absorbent.

Research has shown that, due to its absorbent nature, activated charcoal can draw toxins from the body. For this reason, it’s commonly used to absorb toxins in the stomach to treat poisonings and drug overdoses.

Activated charcoal has also become a popular ingredient in beauty and skin care products. There isn’t much research to support the use of activated charcoal for skin health, but anecdotal evidence does seem to point to its effectiveness.

Although there is limited research into the skin benefits of activated charcoal, some skin care experts believe a charcoal mask can help your skin in the following ways:

  • Removes impurities. Because research has shown that activated charcoal can absorb toxins in your body, some beauty experts believe that a charcoal face mask can help draw impurities and dirt from your skin.
  • Reduces acne breakouts. An accumulation of sebum (skin oils) and bacteria can clog your pores, resulting in breakouts. If you’re looking for a natural acne remedy, activated charcoal may help by removing bacteria and other impurities from your pores. Also reducing pore size for a more even skin look.
  • Controls oiliness. By removing dead skin cells and absorbing excess oil, activated charcoal may help give your skin a healthy glow without too much shine.

Organic Olea Europaea (Olive Oil)

The main active constituents of olive oil include oleic acid, phenolic constituents, and squalene. The main phenolic compounds, hydroxytyrosol and oleuropein, give extra-virgin olive oil its bitter, pungent taste. The present review focuses on recent works that have analyzed the relationship between the major phenolic compound oleuropein and its pharmacological activities including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-atherogenic, anti-cancer activities, antimicrobial activity, antiviral activity, hypolipidemic and hypoglycemic effect.

5.1. Antioxidant activity Oleuropein potently and dose-dependently inhibits copper sulphate-induced oxidation of low-density lipoproteins (LDL) [43, 44]. According to De la Puerta et al. [45], oleuropein Oleuropein in Olive and its Pharmacological Effects 141 Sci Pharm. 2010; 78: 133–154. has both the ability to scavenge nitric oxide and to cause an increase in the inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) expression in the cell. A scavenging effect of oleuropein was demonstrated with respect to hypochlorous acid (HOCl) [43]. HOCl is an oxidative substance produced in vivo by neutrophil myeloperoxidase at the site of inflammation and can cause damage to proteins including enzymes. Coni et al. [46] conducted a study with laboratory rabbits fed special diets that contained olive oil and oleuropein. The results indicate that the addition of oleuropein increases the ability of LDL to resist oxidation and at the same time reduces the plasma levels of total, free, and esterified cholesterol. Additionally, the potential protective effects of oleuropein have been investigated in isolated rat hearts by Manna et al. [47]. The organs were subjected to 30 min of no-flow global ischemia and then reperfused. At different intervals, the coronary heart effluent was collected and assayed for creatine kinase activity and reduced and oxidized glutathione. The extent of lipid peroxidation was evaluated by measuring the concentration of thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance in the muscle. According to the authors, the findings of the study strengthen the hypothesis that the health benefits of olive oil are related to the oleuropein derivatives that are present in olive oil. De la Puerta et al. [48] determined the anti-eicosanoid and antioxidant effects in leukocytes of the principal phenolic compounds (oleuropein, tyrosol, hydroxytyrosol and caffeic acid) from the polar fraction of olive oil. Moreover, Visioli et al. [49] demonstrated that the administration of catecholic phenolic from olive oil (oleuropein) dose-dependently decreases the urinary excretion of 8-isoPGF2α, indicating lower in vivo lipid peroxidation in supplemented volunteers. 

5.2. Anti-inflammatory effect Visioli et al. [36] showed that oleuropein increases nitric oxide (NO) production in macrophages challenged with lipopolysaccharide through induction of the inducible form of the enzyme nitric oxide synthase, thus increasing the functional activity of these immunocompetent cells. It is well known that oleuropein elicits anti-inflammatory effects by inhibiting lypoxygenase activity and the production of leukotriene B4 [48]. 

5.5. Antimicrobial effect: Oleuropein has been shown to have strong antimicrobial activity against both Gramnegative and Gram-positive bacteria [57–59] as well as mycoplasma [60]. Phenolic structures similar to oleuropein seem to produce its antibacterial effect by damaging the bacterial membrane and/or disrupting cell peptidoglycans. Different authors have used biophysical assays to study the interaction between oleuropein and membrane lipids [61]; however, the exact mechanism of the antimicrobial activity of oleuropein is still not completely established, although some authors have proposed that it is due to the presence of the ortho-diphenolic system (catechol) [57]. In 2001, Saija and Uccella [62] proposed that the glycoside group modifies the ability to penetrate the cell membrane and get to the target site. Effective interference with the production procedures of certain amino acids necessary for the growth of specific microorganisms has also been suggested. Another mechanism proposed is the direct stimulation of phagocytosis as a response of the immune system to microbes of all types. Oleuropein and hydrolysis products are able to inhibit the development and production of enterotoxin B by Staphylococcus aureus, the development of Salmonella enteritidis and the germination and consequent development of spores of Bacillus cereus [57–67]. Oleuropein and other phenolic compounds (p-hydroxybenzoic, vanillic and p-coumaric acids) completely inhibit the development of Klebsiella pneumoniae, Escherichia coli and B. cereus [58]. Oleuropein in Olive and its Pharmacological Effects 143 Sci Pharm. 2010; 78: 133–154. Recently, Sudjana et al. [68] showed the antimicrobial activity of commercial Olea europaea (olive) leaf extracts (abundantly oleuropein) against Campylobacter jejuni, Helicobacter pylori and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The authors also demonstrated these extracts play a role in regulating the composition of the gastric flora by selectively reducing levels of H. pylori and C. jejuni.

5.8 Anti-aging: Normal human fibroblasts undergo replicative senescence due to both genetic and environmental factors. The proteasome, a multicatalytic nonlysosomal protease, has impaired function during aging, while its increased expression delays senescence in human fibroblasts. Katsiki et al. [77] demonstrated that oleuropein enhances proteasome activities in vitro more effectively than other known chemical activators, possibly through conformational changes of the proteasome. Moreover, continuous treatment of early passage human embryonic fibroblasts with oleuropein decreases the intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), reduces the amount of oxidized proteins through increased proteasome-mediated degradation rates and retains proteasome function during replicative senescence. Importantly, oleuropein-treated cultures exhibit a delay in the appearance of senescence morphology, and their life span is extended by approximately 15% [77]. 144 S. H. Omar: Sci Pharm. 2010; 78: 133–154. Oleuropein Free ion Leukotrine B4 ROS, Oxidative stress APP LDL-oxidation iNOS Aβ Aβ sestabilisation Neuroprotection Fig. 5. Diagrammatic representation of the neuroprotective role of oleuropein 

Organic Rosa Canina (RoseHip Oil)

Rosehip oil is also known as rosehip seed oil. It’s derived from the rosa canina rose bush, which is grown mostly in Chile.

Unlike rose oil, which is extracted from rose petals, rosehip oil is pressed from the fruit and seeds of the rose plant.

Prized since ancient times for its valuable healing benefits, rosehip oil is loaded with skin-nourishing vitamins and essential fatty acids. It also contains phenols that have been shown to have antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Rosehip oil is often used as a carrier oil for essential oils which are too intense to put on your skin directly.

Hydration: Hydration is essential for soft, supple skin. Lack of hydration can be a problem during extreme weather, or as skin ages.

Rosehip oil contains a wealth of essential fatty acids, including linoleic and linolenic acid. Fatty acids help to keep cell walls strong so that they don’t lose water.

The many fatty acids in rosehip oil make it an excellent option for hydrating dry, itchy skin. The skin also easily absorbs the oil, allowing its antioxidants to travel deep into the skin’s layers.

Moisturizes: Moisturizing helps lock in your skin’s natural hydration and any added oils.

A 2015 study using rosehip powder suggests that rosehips offer several anti-aging properties, including the ability to keep skin moisturized. Researchers found that participants who took rosehip powder orally experienced noticeable improvements in the overall moisture of their skin.

You may also receive these benefits by applying rosehip oil topically. Rosehip oil is a dry, or non greasy, oil. This makes it a great natural moisturizer for all skin types.

Exfoliate and help brightens skin: Natural exfoliation with rosehip oil can help reduce dullness and leave you with glowing, vibrant skin.

That’s because rosehip oil is high in vitamins A and C. Vitamin A, or retinol, encourages skin cell turnover. Vitamin C also aids in cell regeneration, boosting overall radiance.

Boost collagen formation: Collagen is the building block of skin. It’s essential for skin elasticity and firmness. Your body naturally makes less collagen as you age.

Rosehip oil is rich in vitamins A and C, which are both necessary for the production of collagen. Rosehip has also been shownTrusted Source to inhibit the creation of MMP-1, an enzyme that breaks down collagen in the body.

Research supports these benefits, too. In one 2015 studyTrusted Source, researchers found that participants who took rosehip powder orally experienced a noticeable increase in skin elasticity.

Reduces inflammation

Rosehip is rich in both polyphenols and anthocyanin, which may help reduce inflammation. It also contains vitamin E, an antioxidant known for its anti-inflammatory effects.

With this in mind, rosehip oil may help calm irritation resulting from:

  • rosacea
  • psoriasis
  • eczema
  • dermatitis

Protects against sun damage

Cumulative damage from a lifetime of exposure to the sun plays a major role in premature aging. UV exposure can also interfere with the body’s ability to produce collagen.

Rosehip oil contains antioxidants like vitamins A, C, and E. These vitamins have been shown to synergistically combat visible sun damage. They may also help prevent photoaging.

With this in mind, rosehip oil may be used to help reduce the negative effects of UV exposure. But it shouldn’t be used in place of sunscreen. Talk to your doctor or dermatologist about how you can safely use both in your skincare routine.

Reduces hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation occurs when excess melanin forms dark spots or patches on the skin. This can result from a number of factors, including:

  • sun exposure
  • hormonal changes, such as with pregnancy or menopause
  • certain medications, including birth control pills and chemotherapy drugs

Rosehip oil is rich in vitamin A. Vitamin A is made up of several nutritional compounds, including retinoids. Retinoids are known for their ability to reduce hyperpigmentation and other visible signs of aging with regular use.

Rosehip oil also contains both lycopene and beta carotene. These ingredients are said to haveTrusted Source skin-lightening properties, making them staple ingredients in many skin-lightening products.

Animal studies indicate that rosehip extract does contain melanin-reducing propertiesTrusted Source, and may warrant further study for its use on humans.

Reduce scars and fine lines

Rosehip oil is rich in essential fatty acids and antioxidants, which are integral for tissue and cell regeneration in the skin. It’s no wonder that the oil has long been used as a folk remedy for wound healing, as well as the reduction of scars and fine lines.

One 2015 studyTrusted Source on rosehip powder showed a significant reduction in the appearance of fine lines around the eyes, also known as crow’s feet, after eight weeks of treatment. Participants in this study consumed the powder orally.

In a separate 2015 study, participants with post-surgical scars treated their incision site twice per day with topical rosehip oil. After 12 weeks of use, the group using rosehip oil experienced significant improvements in scar color and inflammation when compared to the group who received no topical treatment.

Boosts Immunity

Rosehip oil is rich in antioxidants and polyunsaturated fatty acids, like linoleic acid, which are imperative for preventing the breakdown of cell membranes in the skin. Strong, healthy cells act as a barrier to prevent bacteria from invading the skin, which can lead to outbreaks and infections.

In both animal and human studies, rosehip powder has been shownTrusted Source to bolster the strength and longevity of the skin’s cells. Rosehip powder was also shownTrusted Source to reduce the production of MMP-1, an enzyme that breaks down cell structures like collagen.

How to use rosehip oil

Rosehip oil is a dry oil that easily absorbs into the skin.

Although it’s generally safe for all skin types, you should perform a patch test before your first use. This will ensure that you aren’t allergic to the oil.

To do this:

  1. apply a small amount of rosehip oil to your forearm or wrist
  2. cover the treated area with a band aid or gauze
  3. after 24 hours, check the area for signs of irritation
  4. if the skin is itchy or inflamed, you shouldn’t use rosehip oil (see your doctor if the irritation persists)
  5. if the skin doesn’t show any signs of irritation, it should be safe to use elsewhere

Once you’ve done a patch test, you can apply rosehip oil up to twice per day. The oil can be used on its own, or you can add a few drops to another carrier oil or your favorite moisturizer.

Rosehip oil can go rancid quickly. To help extend its shelf life, store the oil in a cool, dark place. You can also store it in your refrigerator.

Though it’s slightly more expensive, cold-pressed, organic rosehip oil is recommended for purity and best results.

Borago Officinalis (Borage Oil)

What is borage oil?

Borage oil is an extract made from the seeds of the Borago officinalis plant.

Borage oil is prized for its high gamma linoleic acid (GLA) content. It’s thought that this fatty acid can help reduce inflammation tied to many diseases.

Read on to learn more about the oil’s potential benefits, as well as drawbacks and limitations. Discuss these with your doctor before using it to treat any condition.

Borage oil uses

Borage oil has shown promise in clinical research for the following uses:

  • inflammation
  • acne
  • breast pain
  • cardiovascular disease
  • eczema
  • menopause
  • rosacea

Skin barrier

Research on borage oil’s effects on eczema are mixed.

A review of studies using borage oil topically, and other GLA-containing plant oils, found borage oil has both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that can be beneficial for people with atopic dermatitis.

In a separate 2013 review of the effect of borage oil taken by mouth, researchers concluded that borage oil showed no more benefits for people with eczema than placebos, based on an analysis of 19 related studies.

Thus, clinical research is showing more promise with topical borage oil for skin diseases compared with oral versions.

How to use borage oil for skin and hair

Topical borage oil must be diluted with a carrier oil before applying to your skin.

  • You can mix up to 12 drops per one ounce of almond, jojoba, or olive oil before use.
  • Apply the oil to the affected area in a thin layer twice a day.
  • Another option is to coat or spot-dob an undershirt with the oil and wear the shirt close to your skin. This can be useful for areas on the back.

Based on clinical research, it may take several weeks or months for the oil to take full effect, so be patient and apply the product consistently for desired results.

Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange Peel Tincture)

Citrus aurantium dulcis peel oil is also called orange peel oil. As you may expect, this oil is derived from the Citrus aurantium dulcis plant – the sweet orange. This is the same type of orange you may find for sale in your local grocery store.

High in AHAs

One of the biggest Citrus aurantium dulcis peel oil skin benefits is its ability to help the exfoliate skin. It’s high in AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids), which allow it to work as an exfoliator and also minimize the effects of photodamage (sun damage) on skin.

AHAs also function as water-binding agents (humectants) in cosmetics and help preserve the moisture of your skin and prevent it from drying out.

Whilst there does not appear to be a lot of scientific research into direct benefits of Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract on our skin, Hesperidin is the major flavonoid contained in sweet oranges and lemons1. It has demonstrated antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, skin lightening, and anti-microbial properties and can be beneficial in skin care formulations. Hesperidin has also been shown to offer skin protection against UVA-induced damage of fibroblasts and collagen.

Oranges and lemons are also a rich source of Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid), the major water-soluble antioxidant for protecting our skin.

  • Antimicrobial

Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Fruit Extract has been shown to have antimicrobial activity2.

Promotes Strong, Healthy Skin

Citrus aurantium dulcis peel oil also helps strengthen and thicken the outer layer of the skin, smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles, and minimizing dryness and flakiness of the skin. It also helps boost protein regeneration, as well as collagen and elastin synthesis.

Origanum Compactum (Oregano Oil)

The essential oil of oregano is attributed with being antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory.* The fresh leaves of the oregano plant are steamed to extract the essential oils for medicinal uses. For example, oregano oil can be used to help loosen build up in the respiratory system as needed.

When applied to a skin fungus, oregano oil works well to stop and protect against fungus as well as colds and other immunity systems defenses.* This oil can be used topically on the skin for its anti-inflammatory properties.

Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree Oil)

Tea tree oil, also known as melaleuca oil, is an essential oil that comes from steaming the leaves of the Australian tea tree.

When used topically, tea tree oil is believed to be antibacterial. Tea tree oil is commonly used to treat acne, redness, and dryness.

Research on tea tree oil use for specific conditions shows:

Research suggests that a treatment gel containing tea tree oil might be effective at relieving acne.

When used topically, tea tree oil is generally safe and might be helpful in treating acne and other superficial skin infections.

Safety and side effects

Most people can use tea tree oil topically with no problems. However, tea tree oil can cause:

  • Skin irritation
  • Allergic skin rash (dermatitis)
  • Itching
  • Redness
  • Dryness

Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit Seed)

The extract, which is 60% grapefruit seed extract and 40% USP vegetable glycerin, possesses strong antiseptic, germicidal, antibacterial, fungicidal and anti-viral properties and also acts as an antioxidant. Its antibacterial property protects against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria including Escherichia coli and Staphylo-coccus Aureus. Its fungicidal property protects against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus niger. In addition to the above properties, the extract can also be used to help disinfect laboratory utensils and manufacturing equipment.

The extract is non-toxic and non-irritating when used at dilutions of up to 2%. It is biodegradable, non-corrosive and considered environmentally safe. The heavy viscous liquid is lemon yellow in color and has a mild citrus aroma. It can be formulated into: moisturizers, serums, balms, facial toners, mud packs, exfoliants, personal fragrance products, liquid soaps and hair care products. It is soluble in water, glycol, alcohol and organic solvents.

The extract is compatible with nonionic agents, citric acid, ascorbic acid, acetic acid, sodium acetate, potassium hydroxide, borax, sodium sulfate, sodium carbonate and isopropanol alcohol. It is not compatible with anionic wetting agents.

Grapefruit seed extract is processed from grapefruit seeds and pulp obtained as a byproduct from grapefruit juice production. Vegetable glycerin is added to the final product to reduce acidity and bitterness.

Grapefruit seed extract is applied to the skin as a facial cleanser, first-aid treatment, remedy for mild skin irritations

Organic Calendula Officinalis (Calendula)

Calendula oil is a natural oil extracted from marigold flowers (Calendula officinalis). It’s often used as a complementary or alternative treatment.

Calendula oil has antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties that might make it useful in healing wounds, soothing eczema, and relieving diaper rash. It’s also used as an antiseptic.

Read on to find out more about the potential benefits of calendula oil for your skin and where to find calendula products.

Calendula products

Calendula oil is made by infusing marigold flowers in a carrier oil. This oil can be used on its own or to make ointments, creams, or salves. Calendula can also be processed into a tincture, tea, and capsules.

Calendula oil benefits for skin

Calendula oil may be an alternative remedy to treat various skin conditions as well as improve the quality and appearance of the skin. Here are seven ways calendula oil may be used for the skin.

Calendula cream as sunscreen

Calendula oil might be an option for sun protection. A 2012 laboratory study found that calendula oil had SPF properties as a cream mixture. However, more evidence is needed to support calendula cream as a possible sunscreen.

In the meantime, stick to a sunscreen proven to work to reduce the chances of skin cancer for you and your family.

Find sunscreens infused with calendula extract online.

In the study, women who used either aloe vera or calendula ointment every eight hours for five days showed improvement in symptoms such as redness, swelling, and bruising. Adding aloe or calendula ointment to standard care was found to be more effective than using standard care alone.

Calendula oil for acne

Some people use calendula oil to treat acne. One laboratory study found that calendula extract may be useful in treating and preventing acne vulgaris, but more research, especially studies on humans, is needed to support these findings.

You can try washing your face using a calendula cleanser. You can apply calendula cream, oil, or spot treatment to your whole face or use it to target acne-prone areas. You may even wish to try a face mask treatment once per week.

Calendula oil for eczema

Although there’s no research to support it, some people use calendula oil to treat eczema. However, one study found it can help relieve pain from dermatitis in people receiving radiation for breast cancer.

Here are eight natural remedies to reduce eczema symptoms.

Calendula oil for diaper rash

Calendula oil might help soothe diaper rash. A small study in 2012 found that while an aloe vera cream was effective in treating diaper rash, a calendula ointment was significantly more beneficial. However, this research is preliminary.

To relieve diaper rash, you can try applying a small amount of calendula oil on its own or mixed with aloe vera on the affected area a few times per day.

For more options, read our roundup of the 11 best diaper rash creams.

Calendula oil for psoriasis

Calendula oil’s wound-healing properties might make it a good choice in treating psoriasis, but there isn’t any research on this yet. You can try applying calendula oil or balm on the affected area a few times each day.

Calendula oil for better skin

Calendula oil might improve the overall appearance of your skin. One study found that a cream containing calendula extract may promote skin hydration and firmness, but more research is needed.

It’s also speculated that calendula might help treat contact dermatitis, which includes reactions to poison ivy.

You can try applying calendula oil or cream on your skin twice per day.

Origanum Arctium  Lappa (Burdock Root)

Burdock root

Burdock root is a vegetable native to Northern Asia and Europe, though it now grows in the United States. The burdock plant’s deep roots are very long and vary in color from beige to brown and nearly black on the outside.

Burdock root has been used for centuries in holistic medicine to treat a variety of different conditions. Traditionally, it’s been most commonly used as a diuretic and a digestive aid (1).

Now, researchers have discovered numerous potential uses and health benefits for burdock root. These benefits may be extensive enough to warrant using burdock root as a complementary treatment for certain conditions.

Burdock root benefits

  1. It’s a powerhouse of antioxidants

Burdock root has been shown to contain multiple types of powerful antioxidants, including quercetin, luteolin, and phenolic acids (2).

Antioxidants protect cells in the body from damage due to free radicals. They can help treat and prevent a number of different health conditions.

Antioxidants can also help to reduce inflammation. One study found that burdock root reduced inflammatory markers in the blood of patients with osteoarthritis ( Source).

  1. It can help treat skin issues

Burdock root has also long been used to treat skin conditions like acne and eczema. The root’s anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties can help resolve skin issues when applied topically to the skin (7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).

There’s also evidence that burdock root may help treat topical burns (9Trusted Source).

Organic Trifolium Pratense (Red Clover)

Red clover (Trifolium pratense) is a wild flowering plant belonging to the same family as peas and beans.

It’s widely used in traditional medicine as a remedy for menopause symptoms, asthma, whooping cough, arthritis, and even cancer.

Skin and hair health

Red clover extract has been used in traditional medicine to promote skin and hair health.

In a randomized study in 109 postmenopausal women, participants reported significant improvements in hair and skin texture, appearance, and overall quality after taking 80 mg of red clover extract for 90 days (25Trusted Source).

Another study in 30 men showed a 13% increase in the hair growth cycle (anagen) and a 29% decrease in the hair loss cycle (telogen) when a 5% red clover extract was applied to the scalp for 4 months, compared with the placebo group (26Trusted Source).

Though promising, more research is needed.

Organic Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary):

Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil

Rosemary is from the family of Lamiaceae and is native to the Mediterranean region, but is also cultivated in Central Asia, India, South Africa and the USA. It can improve circulation and is slightly antibacterial, promotes skin metabolism and also contains powerful antioxidants. It provides effective care for mature skin, cellulite and poor circulation because of its circulation-promoting effect. Blemished skin can be brought back to balance by rosemary.

Cosmetic properties:

  • slightly antibacterial, promotes skin metabolism, balancing for impure or oily skin
  • powerful antioxidant, optimal for skin care
  • could improve blood circulation and cellulite

see. Heike Käser 2010 "Natural Cosmetic Raw Materials", Linz, Freya Verlag, 3rd Edition 2012



MAIN BENEFITS: A potent antioxidant, rosemary leaf extract protects the skin and prevents signs of premature aging. Rosmarinic acid (the main component in rosemary leaf extract) is powerfully calming for skin conditions like eczema and acne.

WHO SHOULD USE IT: In general, anyone with acne, eczema or anyone interested in anti-aging skincare.

HOW OFTEN CAN YOU USE IT: It’s safe for daily use.

WORKS WELL WITH: Rosemary leaf extract plays nice with most skincare ingredients. Having said that, it's always worth looking to expertly-blended formulas from reputable brands and patch testing if you are prone to sensitivity.

DON'T USE WITH: Rosemary leaf extract is safe to use in conjunction with most, if not all, ingredients.

Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola Extract)

Pegged as the “herb of longevity,” gotu kola is a staple in traditional Chinese, Indonesian, and Ayurvedic medicine. Practitioners claim the medicinal plant has the power to boost brainpower, heal skin issues, and promote liver and kidney health — and some studies seem to agree.

  1. It may improve circulation and reduce swelling

Research from 2001Trusted Source found that gotu kola can reduce problems with fluid retention, ankle swelling, and circulation tied to taking flights that last longer than three hours.

Participants who experienced mild-to-moderate superficial venous disease with varicose veins were asked to take gotu kola for two days before their flight, the day of their flight, and the day after their flight.

Researchers found that participants who took the supplement experienced significantly less fluid retention and ankle swelling than those who didn’t.

Older research has also shown that gotu kola can be useful in treating varicose veins. This may be because gotu kola has a positive metabolic effect on the connective tissue of the vascular wall.

How to use: Take 60 to 100 mg of gotu kola extract 3 times per day for a week, before and after any flights. You can also massage the affected area with a topical cream containing 1 percent gotu kola extract.

How to do a skin patch test: It’s important to do a patch test before using any topical medication. To do this, rub a dime-sized amount onto the inside of your forearm. If you don’t experience any irritation or inflammation within 24 hours, it should be safe to use elsewhere.

  1. It may help reduce appearance of stretch marks

According to a 2013 review, gotu kola can reduce the appearance of stretch marks. It’s thought that the terpenoids found in gotu kola increase collagen production in the body. This may help prevent new stretch marks from forming, as well as help heal any existing marks.

How to use: Apply a topical cream containing 1 percent gotu kola extract to the affected area several times per day.

How to do a skin patch test: It’s important to do a patch test before using any topical medication. To do this, rub a dime-sized amount onto the inside of your forearm. If you don’t experience any irritation or inflammation within 24 hours, it should be safe to use elsewhere.

  1. It may promote wound healing and minimize scarring

Researchers in a 2015 study on rats found that wound dressing containing gotu kola had healing effects on multiple types of wounds. This includes clean cuts by sharp objects, irregular tears caused by blunt-force trauma, and infected tissue.

Although promising, further research is needed to confirm these findings.

How to use: Apply an ointment containing 1 percent gotu kola extract to the affected area several times per day. If your wound is deep or otherwise severe, see your doctor before use.

How to do a skin patch test: It’s important to do a patch test before using any topical medication. To do this, rub a dime-sized amount onto the inside of your forearm. If you don’t experience any irritation or inflammation within 24 hours, it should be safe to use elsewhere.

 Centella asiatica known as Gotu Kola is a medicinal plant that has been used in folk medicine for hundreds of years as well as in scientifically oriented medicine. The active compounds include pentacyclic triterpenes, mainly asiaticoside, madecassoside, asiatic and madecassic acids. Centella asiatica is effective in improving treatment of small wounds, hypertrophic wounds as well as burns, psoriasis and scleroderma. The mechanism of action involves promoting fibroblast proliferation and increasing the synthesis of collagen and intracellular fibronectin content and also improvement of the tensile strength of newly formed skin as well as inhibiting the inflammatory phase of hypertrophic scars and keloids. Research results indicate that it can be used in the treatment of photoaging skin, cellulite and striae.

Centella asiatica (L.) Urban., synonym: Hydrocotyle asiatica L. (Eng. Indian Pennywort, Fr. Hydrocotyle asiatique, Ger. Asiatischer Wassernabel), also known by common names as: Gotu kola or Tiger Grass, belongs to the Apiaceae family. It grows in Asia, mainly in India, Pakistan, Madagascar, equatorial Africa, central America and in the tropical region of Oceania [1]. The C. asiatica herb was already used as a “panacea” three thousand years ago in China, India, Africa, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Madagascar. In the 19th century, C. asiatica and C. asiatica extract were included in the Indian Pharmacopoeia. Due to the medicinal properties of the plant it was gradually incorporated into other Pharmacopoeias: British Herbal Pharmacopoeia, Chinese Pharmacopoeia, Dutch Pharmacopoeia, German Pharmacopoeia, Homöopathisches Arzneibuch, Martindale European Pharmacopoeia, Pharmacopee française, La Farmacopea Italiana X, European Pharmacopoeia VI and into Polish Pharmacopoeia IX edition [1–3]. According to European and Polish Pharmacopoeias, Centella (Centellae asiaticae herba) consists of dried, fragmented aerial parts of Centella asiatica (L. Urban.), contains not less than 6.0 per cent of total triterpenoid derivatives expressed as asiaticoside [2, 3].

In traditional Asian medicine, the herb of C. asiatica has been used for hundreds of years, especially in dermatological conditions, to improve small wounds, scratches, burns, hypertrophic wounds healing, and as an anti-inflammatory agent, particularly in eczema. It is also recommended as an antipyretic, diuretic, rheumatic, antibacterial, antiviral drug, in the treatment of vein insufficiency and for improving cognition, relieving anxiety and as an anti-cancer agent [1, 4, 5]. Formerly, C. asiatica was also used in epilepsy, hysteria, leprosy, and in minor itching and insect bites [5].

This review presents the results of activity of C. asiatica in facilitating the healing of wounds, compounds responsible for activity and mechanism of action, also contraindications and potential side effects. So far studies in the use of this plant as an ingredient in cosmetic preparations applied on photoaging skin, in cellulite and striae have also been presented.

Go to:

Chemical composition

The most important constituents isolated from C. asiatica were triterpenoid saponins known as centelloids. Saponins may account for 1% to 8% of all C. asiatica constituents [6]. The variable quantity mainly depends on the origin of the plant and can be established using the HPLC-UV method [7].

Centellosides are primarily ursane- and oleanane-type pentacyclic triterpenoid saponins. The most important compounds, due to their pharmacological activity, are asiaticoside, madecassoside, asiatic acid and madecassic acid. Other centellosides occurring in C. asiatica include triterpenic acids, for example: brahmic acid, madasiatic acid, terminolic acid, centellic acid as well as their glycosides: brahminoside, madasiaticoside and centelloside [6]. Centella also contains other components, including volatile oils (0.1%), flavonoids, tannins, phytosterols, amino acids and sugars [1, 8].

Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant Extract) 

Field or common horsetail (Equisetum arvense) is a perennial fern that belongs to the genus Equisetaceae (2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source).

It grows wildly in Northern Europe and America, as well as in other moist places with temperate climates. It has a long, green, and densely branched stem that grows from spring to fall (1Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source).

The plant contains numerous beneficial compounds that confer it multiple health-promoting effects. Of these, antioxidants and silica stand out (1Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source).

Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals in your body to prevent cell damage. Meanwhile, silica is a compound comprised of silicon and oxygen. It’s believed to be responsible for horsetail’s potential benefits for skin, nails, hair, and bones (2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source).

Horsetail is known for providing many other potential benefits, including:

  • Anti-inflammatory activity. Test-tube studies show that horsetail extract may inhibit lymphocytes, the main type of defense cells involved in inflammatory immune diseases (20Trusted Source, 21Trusted Source).
  • Antimicrobial activity. Horsetail essential oil seems to have potent activity against bacteria and fungi, including Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Aspergillus niger, and Candida albicans (3Trusted Source, 22Trusted Source).
  • Antioxidant activity. Research shows that horsetail is rich in phenolic compounds, a group of powerful antioxidants that inhibit oxidative damage to cellular membranes (3Trusted Source, 23Trusted Source, 24Trusted Source).
  • Antidiabetic effect. Animal and test-tube studies suggest that horsetail extract may help lower blood sugar levels and regenerate damaged pancreatic tissue (25Trusted Source, 26Trusted Source).

Pelagonium Gravoleons (Wild Geranium Extract)

Geranium essential oil is derived by steam distillation of the leaves of Pelargonium graveolens, a plant species native to South Africa. According to folklore, it was used for a wide range of health conditions.

Geranium oil is grown in many regions, including Europe and Asia. There are many varieties and strains of the pink flower with a fresh, floral fragrance. Each variety differs in scent, but is near-identical in terms of composition, benefits, and uses.

Geranium oil is widely used as an ingredient in perfumes and cosmetics. The essential oil is also used in aromatherapy to treat a number of health conditions. In aromatherapy, essential oils are inhaled using a diffuser, or diluted with carrier oils and applied to the skin for soothing benefits.

Researchers have examined the benefits of geranium essential oil in several human and animal studies. There’s also anecdotal evidence about its benefits. It’s thought to have antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and astringent properties.

Geranium essential oil benefits

Geranium essential oil has been well researched for some conditions, but is less researched for others. Make sure to check with a doctor before using it, and don’t substitute geranium essential oil for a prescribed medication or treatment.

Geranium oil may be beneficial for the following conditions:

Acne, dermatitis, and inflammatory skin conditions

A 2017 review of studiesTrusted Source on geranium essential oil indicated that its antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antiseptic properties make it beneficial for reducing acne breakouts, skin irritation, and skin infections when applied topically.

Geranium essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties also make it beneficial for a number of inflammatory conditions, including those affecting skin.

One studyTrusted Source found that geranium essential oil shows promise as a potential anti-inflammatory medication with few side effects.


An animal studyTrusted Source indicated that geranium essential oil’s anti-inflammatory qualities may make it beneficial for leg and foot swelling caused by edema.

Anecdotal evidence indicates that adding geranium essential oil to bath water may be a good way to treat this condition. More research is needed to investigate the effects of geranium essential oil on edema.

Nasal vestibulitis

Nasal vestibulitis is an uncomfortable condition associated with cancer drug treatment.

A small observational study and anecdotal evidence suggests geranium essential oil may ease nasal symptoms caused by this condition, such as bleeding, scabbing, pain, dryness, and sores.

For the study, geranium essential oil was mixed with sesame oil and used as a nasal spray in women undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer.


Multiple studies suggest geranium essential oil may fight off bacterial infections. Geranium essential oil has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, making it effective against multiple bacterial strains.

One studyTrusted Source found that geranium essential oil was about as effective as amoxicillin at fighting bacterial strains, such as Staphylococcus aureus. The same study found that it was not effective at fighting Listeria monocytogenes, a different bacterial strain.

Neurodegenerative disease

Certain neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are associated with varying degrees of neuroinflammation.

A study found that high concentrations of citronellol, a component of geranium essential oil, inhibited nitric oxide production, reducing inflammation and cell death in the brain.

According to researchers, geranium essential oil might have benefits for people with neurodegenerative diseases that include neuroinflammation.

Menopause and perimenopause

A studyTrusted Source found that aromatherapy with geranium essential oil was beneficial at stimulating secretion of salivary estrogen.

Researchers theorized that geranium essential oil might be of value for women experiencing reduced estrogen and health-related symptoms caused by menopause and perimenopause.

Stress, anxiety, and depression

Aromatherapy is becoming more and more mainstream, even in hospital settings. A randomized, clinical trialTrusted Source of women in labor for the first time found that inhaled geranium essential oil had a calming effect and was able to reduce the anxiety associated with first-stage labor.

Anecdotal evidence also suggests geranium essential oil may promote relaxation and alleviate depressive mood. One animal studyTrusted Source on mice analyzed the calming, antidepressive effects of the Reunion geranium (Pelargonium roseum willd) essential oil strain, and found it to be effective for reducing stress.

Shingles pain

Shingles often result in postherpetic neuralgia, a very painful condition affecting the nerve fibers and skin that run along a nerve.

One study found that topical application of geranium oil significantly reduced postherpetic neuralgia pain within minutes of application. These effects were temporary, and required reapplication as needed.


According to one preliminary studyTrusted Source, geranium essential oil’s citronellol content makes it potentially effective for reducing allergic reactions. However, more study is needed.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that topical use may reduce itching caused by allergic reactions. This is because of the anti-inflammatory action of this essential oil.

Wound care

Anecdotal evidence suggests that geranium essential oil may be beneficial for stopping minor wounds from bleeding. It may do this by speeding up coagulation, and by causing blood vessels to contract. It’s antibacterial and antiseptic properties are also beneficial for healing.


Geranium essential oil has long been used in Tunisia as a folk remedy treatment to reduce hyperglycemia.

An animal studyTrusted Source found that daily, oral administration significantly reduced glucose levels in rats. Researchers suggested that geranium essential oil may be beneficial for alleviating high blood sugar in people with diabetes, but also indicated that further study is needed.

Humans should not consume geranium essential oil. Research in humans is still needed, but aromatherapy added to a diffuser or applied topically might have the same effect.

Organic Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion Extract)

Skin Damage

In folk medicine, dried dandelion root is often ground into a paste and mixed with water to create a soothing medicine for skin disorders like:

  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
  • Rashes
  • Boils

There's not much evidence that dandelion can treat these conditions better or faster than leaving the skin alone. But it does seem to have mild anti-inflammatory and antipruritic (anti-itching) properties. Research also suggests that it may help prevent sun damage.6

A 2015 study from Canada reported that dandelion extracts are able to block harmful ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation when applied to the skin, protecting it from sun damage while lowering the risk of skin cancer.6

Dandelion is also known to cause contact dermatitis in some people, especially children.7 This is a type of skin reaction caused by a foreign substance. Be careful when applying any dandelion remedy to the skin.

Cocamide Mipa


Cocamide MIPA is a mixture of isopropanolamides of coconut acid. Also known as cocamide monoisopropanolamine. It functions as a surfactant, viscosity increasing agent, emulsifier and stabilizer. 

It is a foaming agent.

Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate:

What Is Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate?

Disodium laureth sulfosuccinate or DLS is a cleansing ingredient that is used to help improve the cleansing abilities of skincare products. It is generally considered to be less harsh than other cleansing ingredients such as sulfates. 

DLS is a common ingredient in shampoos, cleansers, and body washes. This is mainly due to its ability to lift oils and dirt from the skin, allowing them to be easily rinsed away. DLS also helps to improve the foaming of the product and helps to stabilize the product. 

DLS is not considered a sulfate, while the name may seem similar to sulfates such as sodium lauryl sulfate, it is considered to be far gentler on the skin and non-irritating. 

THE GOOD: DLS is a surfactant, meaning that it helps to cleanse the skin, remove dirt and lift oils so that they can be washed away.

Disodium Lauryl Sulfosuccinate

Disodium lauryl sulfosuccinate (DLS) is a gentle surfactant that foams with water and cleanses the skin and hair.

Surfactants are partly water-soluble and partly oil-soluble, which allows the oil and water-based ingredients of a formula to blend well, but also to be rinsed well.

DLS is often used in cosmetics as a milder alternative to sulfates, although one doesn’t systematically replace the other as they are not the same material and will not behave in the same way with other ingredients. It is derived from palm oil, which is why Lush try not to overuse it and find other options when possible.

Hydroxyethyl Ethylcellulose

Hydroxyethylcellulose is an ingredient that you may not have heard of before. This is because hydroxyethylcellulose doesn’t convey any benefit to the skin but instead improves the texture and sensory feel of skincare formulations. Hydroxyethylcellulose is a cellulose-derived polymer that is used in cosmetics and skincare products as a thickening agent that also works as a rheology modifier.

Hydroxyethylcellulose is a water-soluble polymer derived from cellulose. Cellulose is a natural sugar that is found in the cell wall of plants. In fact, cellulose is the most abundant organic sugar on Earth. While cellulose is naturally derived, hydroethylcellulose is synthetically made by reacting ethylene oxide with alkali-cellulose. Modified cellulose products such as hydroxyethylcellulose are widely used in skincare and cosmetic formulations and also find use in cleaning and household products. Additionally, hydroxyethylcellulose is commonly used in capsules for carrying medicines into the body and improving the drugs’ dissolution in the stomach. 


What Is Carrageenan?

Carrageenan is a natural ingredient that comes from a species of red seaweed (Chondrus crispus) called Irish Moss. It is extracted from the moss and then used as a food additive in products such as yogurt, nut milks, salad dressings and ice cream. It is often used as a vegan-friendly substitute for gelatin and helps to give food a smooth, creamy texture. It’s also a good stabilizer which keeps ingredients from separating from each other. If carrageenan is used as a food additive, what is it doing in your skincare products?

Carrageenan and Its Role in Cosmetics and Skin Care

As a plant-based gelatin-like substance, carrageenan is also used in skin care products as an effective emulsifier to create a smooth, creamy texture. It keeps skin hydrated with its water-binding ability, keeping the moisture where it belongs - in your skin.

As you can see, it’s not just food that benefits from carrageenan. It’s also praised for its role as a thickener, an emulsifier as well as a moisturizer. It can be found in products such as toothpaste, shampoos, conditioners, lotions and moisturizers. Because of its ability to give a product a smooth and luxurious texture, it’s very useful in creating a cream or lotion that is easy and pleasant to apply on your skin. As an emulsifier, it prevents oil-based and water-based ingredients from separating. While carrageenan makes a great emulsifier and thickener, it is also a good moisturizer, helping to lock-in your skin’s own moisture.¹ On top of that, it is 100% plant based which is another appealing feature in today’s skin care market.

What Is Carrageenan?

Carrageenan is an extract from a red seaweed commonly known as Irish Moss. This edible seaweed is native to the British Isles, where it's been used in traditional cooking for hundreds of years. It's also widely used in the food industry, mostly as a thickener and gelling agent. You'll find it in ice cream, cottage cheese, non-dairy milks, jelly, pudding, and infant formula. Unlike gelatin, which is made from animal products, carageenan is appropriate for vegans. 

Who would have thought that this ancient, natural, plant-based ingredient would become center of a swirling controversy? But it certainly has. Some scientists have presented evidence that carrageenan is highly inflammatory and toxic to the digestive tract, and claim that it may be reponsible for colitis, IBS, rheumatoid arthritis, and even colon cancer. Equally respected scientists have detailed the reasons that this evidence is flawed and misleading, concluding that there is no valid reason to ban its use. 

Plant-based Goodness for Your Skin

When you look at natural skin care products like Skin MD Natural, you will see that they contain carrageenan because it is safe, non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores), it’s plant based but most of all, it is beneficial for the skin. It is good to be aware of the research that is done on ingredients that you are using on your skin and to be aware of the accurate facts. When it comes to carrageenan in skin care, there are no risks. There is only smoothing, moisturizing, plant-based goodness to be found.

Potassium Sorbate

What Is Potassium Sorbate? 

Potassium sorbate is a mild preservative that is used in skincare, cosmetics, and body care formulations. It is used to extend the shelf-life of your products by preventing the growth of bacteria, fungi, and molds. It is also used as an alternative to parabens. 

Potassium sorbate is the potassium salt of sorbic acid. Sorbic acid is a natural compound found in berries of the mountain ash tree or Sorbus aucuparia. While natural sources of this ingredient exist, nearly all of the world’s production of sorbic acid is manufactured synthetically. Synthetic production of ingredients and chemicals is often looked upon as a bad thing, particularly in the green or natural beauty industry. However, synthetic manufacturing is actually more sustainable for the environment as it doesn’t deplete natural resources. 

Potassium sorbate is produced industrially by neutralizing sorbic acid with another ingredient, potassium hydroxide. This synthetic version is a nature-identical compound. Nature identical means that the chemical that has been produced synthetically has the same function and structure of the molecule found in nature. Due to patents, some synthetic chemicals have to be altered slightly in order to avoid impinging on another company’s patent. This slight change usually has no effect on the function; however, in some cases, these changes can have unintended side effects. In the case of potassium sorbate, it is nature-identical, eliminating this risk. 

Potassium sorbate occurs as a white crystalline powder, white granules, or pellets. It readily dissolves in the water where it converts to sorbic acid, its active form. 

Sorbic acid is very pH-dependent. In chemistry, pH stands for ‘potential hydrogen’ and it refers to the level of acidity or alkalinity in a given solution. The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14. A pH of 7 is neutral, while a pH less than 7 is acidic and a pH greater than 7 is basic. Sorbic acid demonstrates some activity up to pH 6 (about 6%), but it is most active at pH 4.4 (70%). Keeping in mind that the skin’s natural pH is between 4.7-5.75.

Sodium Benzoate

What Is Sodium Benzoate?

Sodium benzoate is a preservative used in cosmetic and skincare products. Preservatives are an important part of formulating cosmetic, skincare and hair care products. Preservatives help to prevent the growth of bacteria and molds that may be present in the product through exposure to the environment or through user contamination. 

Sodium benzoate is the sodium salt of benzoic acid. Both benzoic acid and sodium benzoate occur naturally in many foods. As Healthline discussed in their article sodium benzoate can be found in fruits and vegetables can be rich sources, particularly cranberries, prunes, plums, cinnamon, ripe cloves, and apples. Other sources include seafood and dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt. While the two components of sodium benzoate are present in naturally occurring sources, it is almost always synthetically produced. 

Sodium benzoate is a white, crystalline solid that dissolves in water, forming a transparent, colorless solution. This ingredient is primarily used as a preservative in food and cosmetic products. In fact, sodium benzoate was the first preservative allowed by the FDA for use in food products.


Phenoxyethanol might not be the most well-known preservative in skincare, but it's slowly becoming one of them. You've likely noticed the growing popularity of "paraben-free" products in recent years and if you've spent enough time looking at product labels, you might have even noticed an ingredient called phenoxyethanol included instead. And since parabens are such a highly debated topic on the internet and a questionable skincare ingredient for some, it would be understandable for you to wonder about the safety of this lesser-known preservative that's suddenly showing up in many of your products.



MAIN BENEFITS: Prevents the growth of bacteria, enhances shelf life, and stabilizes products.

WHO SHOULD USE IT: In general, anyone without an allergy. Phenoxyethanol is not recommended for those with sensitive skin or eczema.


WORKS WELL WITH: Other preservatives.

DON'T USE WITH: Phenoxyethanol works well with most, if not all, ingredients.


  1. What is ethylhexylglycerin used for? Ethylhexylglycerin is a multifunctional cosmetic ingredient used as an active component in deodorants, as an emollient and humectant in skin care, and boosting the anti-microbial performance of other ingredients to protect products from spoilage.

What Is Ethylhexylglycerin?

Ethylhexylglycerin is an ingredient that is found in many skincare and cosmetic formulations. Ethylhexylglycerin is utilized in these products for its natural preservative action and its use as a skin conditioner. It is thought that ethylhexylglycerin’s preservative characteristics come from its ability to also act as a surfactant. Surfactants are ingredients that reduce the surface tension, in the case of Ethylhexylglycerin, the disruption in surface tension and potentially damages the cell membranes of bacteria, preventing their growth. Due to ethylhexylglycerin’s antimicrobial action, it also makes a great deodorizing ingredient. 

Ethylhexylglycerin is derived from glycerine, obtained mainly from plant-based sources such as soybean or palm. Ethylhexylglycerin was first introduced to the cosmetic market in 1992 as a skincare additive and deodorant active called Sensiva SC50. Ethylhexylglycerin is used in a wide variety of skincare, body, and cosmetic products. It can be found in bath products, body and hand products, cleansing products, deodorants, eye makeup, foundations, hair care products, and suntan products.


THE GOOD: Ethylhexylglycerin is a skin conditioning agent, helping to improve the appearance of the skin but also has beneficial anti-microbial, deodorizing and preservative effects.

THE NOT SO GOOD: It can cause some minor irritation to the skin and eyes. This usually occurs in high concentrations. Skincare and cosmetic products typically contain low concentrations of ethylhexylglycerin.

WHO IS IT FOR? All skin types except those that have an identified allergy to it.

SYNERGETIC INGREDIENTS: Works well with most ingredients.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Sensitive skin types should be mindful that ethylhexylglycerin has been linked to some irritation, particularly those who experience contact dermatitis.