On any trip to a salon or beauty store you’ll find scores of products with ads and labels suggesting they’ll make you look young, healthy, ravishingly beautiful, and wildly happy as well. A growing number of these products claim to be natural and good for the planet as well as good for your skin. How do you know what to believe?
Sheryl Lynn Gibbs of Philadelphia has been an aesthetician for over 20 years, and is the creator of the Sevani line of skin care products made from all natural ingredients. As an expert in healthy skin she knows skin care and skin care products inside and out. While most people don’t look closely at labels, she knows exactly what goes into these products, where these come from, how they are made, and how well they actually work.
Skin Care Product Claims Are Most Often Only Skin-Deep
“Many skincare products are not what they seem,” said Sheryl. “It’s unfortunate, but sometimes you just can’t tell from looking at a product and its label what the true story is, even with more expensive products.”
One of the biggest questions people have is whether these products really work. Many of the claims about fighting the effects of aging, for example, sound too good to be true and often they probably are. Studies have shown that many products make exaggerated claims about their ability to fight wrinkles or produce younger looking skin, for example.
The range of prices for skin care products varies enormously, some of them costing hundreds of dollars, and people often believe that the most expensive products must work the best but cost alone does not guarantee results. “Price is irrelevant from the point of view of whether it works or not,” Dr. Charles Zugerman, associate clinical professor of dermatology at Northwestern University Medical School said at Newsweek.com.
Greenwashing in Beauty Products
The ingredients used in beauty products can also widely in purity and quality. Some products even contain potentially toxic ingredients like diethanolamine or triethanolamine that may cause more harm than good. Often the companies selling beauty and skin care products do not make products themselves or even maintain close control over the process. Companies should ideally have a close relationship with the lab that makes their product, but this is not always the case, and sometimes they would probably rather not know all the details.
What About the Health and Beauty of the Planet?
The ingredients used in products are crucial not just for healthy skin but also for a healthy planet. If you look at the label and see a long list of synthetic chemical ingredients, the impact on your skin, your health, and the environment may be quite different than products made from natural sources like plants, nuts, vegetables, and berries.
Sevani Products are Different
Knowing beauty and skin care products so well, Sheryl decided it was time to build on her experience by rolling up her sleeves and creating her Sevani line of all natural skin care products. Part of her motivation came when she often found herself unable to use many products because of her own sensitivity to the synthetic fragrances and petrochemicals they contain.
The ingredients that Sheryl uses in Sevani products are all natural and botanical, from plants and other natural sources. “It really, really is all natural; it has nothing nasty, nothing at all… it is so non-nasty that it’s preservative is made from radish root,” said Marta at TruthinAging.com, talking about the Sevani Rapid Renewal skin moisturizer and brightener.
Sevani ingredients are also EcoCert certified organic as much as possible, and her skin care products have been certified as cruelty-free by Leaping Bunny, avoiding any animal testing, reflecting Sheryl’s commitment to doing her part for a healthier and happier planet.
“Congratulations to Sevani Botanica for being an Innovator in the field of safe cosmetics and beauty products, and for demonstrating that it’s possible to make personal care products that far exceed current safety standards in the United States. A growing number of consumers are seeking personal care products that do not contain hazardous chemicals, and our report shows that making safer products is not only possible, but is also part of a successful business model,” said Mia Davis, organizing director of The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and coordinator of the new Safe Cosmetics Business Network.
Sevani seems like an example of the best that can be achieved with natural beauty products that are good for people as well as the planet. For all of the gimmicks and marketing in skin care and beauty products, I’ve got a feeling that all people really want are products with integrity. They want products that are honest and natural, that tell you exactly what they are made of and what they do, and are available for a reasonable price to get the job done. When you get right down to it, it’s not too much to ask.
Glenn Croston is the author of “75 Green Businesses” and “Starting Green”, helping businesses to start green and grow greener for us all. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.