By: Jenna Catherine
We eat organic kale, drink natural coconut water and insist on cold-pressed oils on our salads. We ban GMO and non-organic products from our diets and refuse to put a morsel in our mouths if it contains anything we can’t pronounce. So why aren’t we just as meticulous about what we put on our skin?
Over the past few years, there’s been an increasing awareness that what we consume affects our health, and the state of the planet, too. ‘Farm to table’ restaurants are growing in popularity as we realise the importance of eating fresh, local produce, as well as reducing the carbon footprint of what we eat. But the same should go for beauty products.
Makeup and skincare products are rife with synthetic compounds that have been linked to adverse side effects ranging from skin irritation to premature aging and cancer. According to the Environmental Working Group, some of the worst offenders are parabens, which are used in creams, shampoos, soaps, deodorants and even baby lotion; SLS or sodium laureth sulphate, which gives soaps, toothpaste, shaving cream, shampoo and bubble bath its lather, but is a powerful irritant; parfum, which can contain any number of harmful chemicals (the companies who make the products are under no obligation to reveal which toxins are in their ‘parfums’) and there are many more.
Forget fancy marketing: whether it’s food, skincare or makeup, using all-natural ingredients for products that we can feel confident are healthy for our bodies is what true luxury is all about. For centuries women have been lining their eyes with natural kohl and moisturizing their bodies with nut oils. How did we stray so far from what comes so naturally to us?
I really want to put the spotlight on a few select organic ‘farm to face’ makeup and skincare brands that either operate their own farms or source their ingredients from local organic farms; brands that have dedicated lines created utilizing the purest of ingredients to ensure that you are getting only the best, luxurious, small batch products. There are no synthetic ingredients, and no toxic preservatives. They don’t test on animals, and don’t rely on a chemical lab to test their effectiveness. Everything from these farm to face beauty brands comes directly from nature. What’s not to love?
Everything that goes into these gorgeously luxurious organic products is not only well-researched for efficiency, but all ingredients are harvested and processed naturally from farms in Italy and upstate New York. You won’t find a single preservative, emulsifier, artificial fragrance, colour or synthetic of any kind in this farm-to-face label.
Just listen to how one of their products – sounds: it’s rich in cucumber and horse chestnut revitalize eye contours and generate a radiant glow. Farm fresh rosemary enhances skin elasticity, whilst arnica brightens the skin and wild carrots are added for their antioxidants and vitamins. Good enough to eat, right?
The founder of Farmaesthetics, Brenda Brock, is the daughter of a 7th generation farming family from Texas. Her first batch of herbal skincare preparations were launched in 1999 at an organic farm stand in rural Rhode Island, and today her line of 100% natural luxury skincare products are offered in the finest spas and retailers in the world.
Brenda has successfully translated traditional herbal recipes from “kitchen chemistry” to modern cosmetic manufacturing, resulting in highly effective herbal skincare products that retain their 100% natural status. No wonder Farmaesthetics was recognized by WWD: it made their “It List” of “The Green Brands Defining Organic Skincare”.
This well loved German brand is helping combat the opium trade in Afghanistan by offering heroin suppliers alternative and better paid jobs. Dr. Hauschka manufacturer WALA Heilmittel is supporting initiatives in developing parts of the world to encourage organic farming and economic self-sufficiency. For example, with 80 percent of the world’s heroin supply coming from Afghanistan, WALA is now offering former opium poppy farmers a better wage to grow roses for Dr Hauschka products. But the brand doesn’t stop there: Dr Hauschka prides itself on not only farm-fresh ingredients, but plants that are biodynamic, organic or responsibly wild harvested, using a special Dr.Hauschka rhythmic processing method. And of course, Dr.Hauschka never, ever uses synthetic chemical products in its products, making them almost good enough to eat!
If this iconic French brand is famous for one thing, it’s grapes. This fruit forms the foundation of their products, which include serums, eye creams, skin creams, skin oils, body creams and much more. In particular, Caudalie use grape seed oil, which is high in polyphenols that protect the skin, and viniferine from the insides of grape vines, which has a strong anti-ageing effect. Free of parabens, SLS, mineral oils, paraffin and other harmful ingredients as well as animal products, the components of all of Caudalie’s creams, serums, lip balms and masks and more are all grown at the brand’s vineyards in France, where you can also enjoy incredible spa treatments using their range.
How gorgeous is this all natural skincare brand’s stuff? The company is located in Florida, USA, where they operate a 600 acre plantation style farm. It includes a 40 acre tree farm, 20 acres of citrus, a greenhouse and 200 acres of grazing cattle. Their products are made with farm fresh ingredients that they harvest right from their very own homestead. Their line consists of skincare for the body, face, hair and even an organic lavender and bamboo shampoo for your furry friend. The straight off the farm style of packaging really gives a special touch, and what’s inside is even better. Take their Impulsive Body Oil for example, it contains rosehips, baobab, sea buckthorn, cocoa, geranium absolutes, and several essential oils that really entice healing. Doesn’t that sound like so much more than skincare?
Brenda Brock from Farmaesthetics is the daughter of a family that’s been in farming for eight generations. She started paving the way for her farm to face range in 1999 when she sold her first herbal skincare products at an organic farmstand in rural Rhode Island, and her line certainly has expanded since then. She now carries a full line of 100% natural skincare products for the face and body and they are now sold at the finest spas in the world, and has received worldwide recognition for her pure handmade products, not to mention countless awards. Some of their bestsellers include Complexion Conserve Remedy Reserve Serum, Hot Toddy for the Body, and their Nourishing Lavender Milk. With their all-natural ingredients and personalised, rustic, hand-written labels, no wonder the brand is such a hit with women, especially moms-to-be and new moms, who use this stuff on their babes, too.
In order to create the purest, most potent skincare products, AEOS works in perfect harmony with nature, starting with their farms. They care for the soil in which they grow their plants and herbs in a way that maximises each ingredient’s powerful potential – harvesting them at the peak of their mineral and nutrient life-force without the use of nasty man-made pesticides, chemicals and fertilisers. Their natural plant-based ingredients are then blended with the purest water enhanced by crystal energies, maximising their synergistic powers to nourish your skin naturally. All the brand’s products, be they cleansers, toners, serums or skin creams, are made in this meticulous manner, then packaged in gorgeous recyclable bottles and tubes.
Launched in 2013, Farm to Girl was founded by female scientists and nurses who wanted to empower women and create skincare and baby care that’s crafted from 100% farm fresh, fairly traded ingredients made in villages by women farmers. Deeply concerned by the ever-growing amounts of harmful chemicals added to commercial skincare, Farm to Girl ensure all that goes into their products is completely nature derived, and they can trace the origins of all ingredients back to the farms they work with. With every product sold, Farm to Girl gives back 20% of all profits to benefit women’s health and education in places like the Solomon Islands.
Like Caudalie, Napa Organics have realised the important health and skin benefits that come from grapes and grapevines. They produce natural and organic skincare with local California agricultural products. Made in small batches, their products, which include cleansers, creams, body oils and toners, are gentle enough for the most sensitive skin. In addition to grape seed oil, organic olive oil, California plum kernel oil, Napa organic lavender and organic rose geranium oil is used in this wonderful smelling range.
Forget the brand ‘Moroccan Oil’ – did you know that despite claiming to be an argan oil for the hair, it only contains a teeny percentage of this precious elixir? Arganix, on the other hand, actually sells 100% pure, farm-to-face argan oil. Just a few little drops on the ends of your hair is enough to restore some lustre, but don’t stop there: argan oil is also great for the skin, thanks to its remarkable cosmetic, anti-ageing and skin restructuring properties. With its high levels of naturally occurring Vitamin E, minerals, essential fatty acids and antioxidant properties, no wonder it’s commonly referred to as ‘liquid gold’, ‘miracle oil’ and ‘Moroccan oil’.
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