Why choose truly natural haircare?

April 12, 2017

Natural Curly Hair Products

In the beauty market, there is no legal definition of ‘Natural’ and manufacturers can market their products as natural regardless of the ingredients they use. We also think there is a lot of scare mongering views on what is good and bad for both the consumer and the environment being fed to us from different quarters. 

We believe in transparency, and we want our customers to understand their ingredients. At Flora & Curl, to guide our customers, we stay clear from blanket descriptions that provide little information such as 'chemical free'. This is because chemicals are natural constituents of all biological life and are present in natural ingredients. Safety remains at the heart of our ethos. All of our ingredients meet the criteria set out in the European Union Directive for Cosmetic Safety. 

In contrast, the mainstream cosmetic industry has one goal in mind, that is to keep their costs as low as possible in order to gain the highest possible profit margin, this is what drives them to synthetics.  Consider that a natural ingredient might cost $500 per kilo while its synthetic counterpart might cost as little as $50 per kilo.  This shouldn’t come as a surprise because natural ingredients need to be harvested, pressed, extracted, heated, processed, etc. and all of this takes time and effort, while lab synthesis can be far more cost effective.  Most commercial haircare manufacturers also keep their costs low by using cheap ingredients such as water, which generally make up the bulk of the product, i.e. many shampoos contain 70%-90% water.  Other forms of cheap ingredients are known irritants on the scalp and hair shaft when used in high enough quantities, such as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. 

While many products claim to be made with the presence of natural ingredients, the reality is that the overwhelming majority of haircare products are loaded with the opposite, and are promoted alongside 'free from' claims. Mainstream haircare products contain long lists of ingredients, touting the presence of 'natural' ingredients. In addition, there is no legal definition for the word 'natural'. Studies reveal that textured haircare products contain more hazardous ingredients and substances compared to their counterparts, with less safer options being available for textured haired women:
A report by the Environmental Working Group notes that ''although “natural” hair products presumably have fewer toxic ingredients than traditional, many of these products still contain harmful ingredients.''

As natural haircare formulators, we incorporate gentle, effective botanical extracts that work together to create harmonious beautiful products that work in synergy with the natural chemistry of the scalp. Ingredients are the driving force behind products with real therapeutic benefits. This is the kind of relationship we believe in, simple natural formulations handmade with honest intentions to produce safe products. 

Mineral oil is a good example of an ingredient that offers virtually nothing in terms of therapeutic benefits and is widely used by the mainstream industry.  It contains no active compounds, works as a cheap moisturizing and effective scalp occlusive agent with high stability against oxygen, water and microbial degradation.   

Much like our skin, our scalp absorbs much of what we put into it, which is why it is important to look at the labels of the products you use to see for yourself how widely they are used.  

The love for using botanicals to create formulations that are not driven by cost or outdated views on what a haircare product should look and feel like, is what sets artisan haircare makers apart.

Naturally yours,

Team Flora & Curl 

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