Of Fear Mongering and Money: Making Sense of Safe Cosmetic Ingredients

Let’s be honest: information is overwhelming. The internet offers us the world at our finger tips, but it can also be a daunting place filled with polarized opinions- “Never/Always give your child vaccines”. “GMO’s are/aren’t safe.”

When it comes to cosmetics, the argument over ingredients is full of fear mongering from both sides. That time comes though when you’re standing in the aisle at the grocery store and you have to take ONE of those shampoo bottles home (because, regardless of the ingredients, you still want clean hair!). How do you choose?

Fresh flowers in test tubes, closeup

On one end of the argument as the pro-organics and naturalists who take an avoidance approach (often not based on science and sometimes even used as a fear tactic to sell organic products) and on the other are the cosmetic companies protecting their names and ingredients for the sake of sales. Eventually, you have to make a decision.

Here’s what you need to know (from a balanced, scientific perspective) and how to simplify your decision making.


Is this odd, natural ingredient worth the hype?

Black particles charcoal

This ingredient is more often associated with backyard barbeques than cosmetics, but it’s garnered a lot of attention in recent years. It’s not foreign to us though- it’s been used as a poison remedy for years! In Asia, especially Japan, China, Korea, and Taiwan, bamboo charcoal has been a popular filtration medium for centuries. Recently though, especially since 2014, it’s been on the rise in the cosmetic and skin care world. The claims by activated charcoal range from being an exfoliator to acne treatment, but, does it live up to the hype?

In short: it depends.


The secret alternative to Botox starts with a…. Cone Snail?

Basket full of Cone Shells on sale

Plastic surgeons performed nearly 7 million Botox© procedures in 2015 alone. If that doesn’t blow you away…consider that is a 759% increase from year 2000!*

At $350-500 for EACH injection site AND results only lasting three months, there’s got to be a better way. Frozen Face Syndrome take a back seat. It’s time to look for alternatives…

Spotlight, please, on the cone snail.

The best kept secret remedies often start with nature: in this case, a small colorful snail living off the coast of Australia. (more…)