Category Archives Health
The other day, I was at the grocery store waiting to pick up a prescription. While I was waiting, I decided to browse the healthy and beauty aisles. As I passed the (seed) products, I strolled down a bit and started to look at some other products. My day job as a freelance beauty writer often involves writing ad copy and site content. One of the tasks I have been doing is writing what you see on bottles and jars of facial products. Those few words can make or break the sales of a product. If you don’t capture someone’s attention right off the bat, chances are they will not try the product. As someone who is passionate about natural ingredients, something that really bothered me during my stroll down the body care aisle was the number of brands using the lure of natural to get you to buy.
“With real shea butter”, “with 100% natural ingredients”, “with natural emollients”, and the like are slapped across labels up and down the aisle. This is just not cool. Why? If the claims were accurate, it would be great. To the consumer just starting out with better ingredients, though, it is confusing. If one goes only by the claims on the front of the bottle, you’re tricked into thinking that the product is good for you. Unfortunately, this is not the case with so many products.
Let’s look at some examples:
I found a very popular body lotion with oatmeal and shea butter. In a large font, it says “100% Natural Ingredients”. To the unsuspecting customer, you would think that this is a NATURAL product, perhaps even 100% natural. The reality, though, is that this is NOT a natural product.
The ingredients are– Water, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Mineral Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Urea, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Avena Sativa (Oat) Meal Extract, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Ceteth 10 Phosphate, Dicetyl Phosphate, Carbomer, Cyclohexasiloxane, Cetearyl Glucoside, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance, Yellow 10, Red 40, Blue 1
So, yes, it contains she butter and oatmeal (albeit an extract), but it also contains petrochemicals, urea (from animals), silicones, artificial colors & fragrances and phenoxyethanol. They neglect to mention that while a miniscule portion of the lotion contains natural ingredients, that this is FAR from natural.
Another example of mis-using “natural” is a product with the word Naturals in the title. It claims it can relives stress because of the lavender, ylang-ylang and chamomile in it. Good stuff, right?
Here are the ingredients of this “natural” lotion– Water, Glycerin, Distearyldimonium Chloride, Petrolatum, Isopropyl Palmitate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour (Oat), Sodium Chloride, Benzyl Alcohol, Fragrance
This one was REALLY misleading. If aromatherapy benefits are made, there should be essential oils. There are NO essential oils in this lotion. None. The lavender, ylang-ylang and chamomile are just FRAGRANCE OILS. Synthetics. Nothing therapeutic. There are petrochemicals, silicones, and aside from the water and oat FLOUR, this is just a bottle of synthetic ingredients packaged up as a soothing, natural body care product.
Consumers are being mislead because companies know that the natural health & beauty industry is hot. People want healthier products and the market has grown exponentially. What irks this natural beauty enthusiast is that companies are taking advantage of your interest in natural. They are putting labels on that give a natural vibe — images of leaves, the color green, pictures of honey pots, aloe plants, etc., when in reality the recipes are the same as they always were.
Being an informed consumer is everything. You deserve better. If you are shopping for a natural product and spend your hard earned money on it, you deserve to come home with a NATURAL natural product, not a faux natural.
When we tell you that our Relaxing Lavender product has lavender, it really does contain NATURAL lavender–real lavender, not something dyed to be a lavender color or a lab-created fragrance made to smell like the real deal. And when we tell you our products are natural, you can be confident that all (seed) Body Care products are indeed 100% natural.
Don’t be duped. Read the ingredients listings. Ask questions. Know what you are buying.
Today, I’d like to talk about an ingredient we use in many of our products here at (seed): Coconut Oil.
I’ve been a huge fan of coconut oil ever since it nearly erased a chronic skin condition I have on my upper arms called Keratosis Pilaris. You may know someone who has this condition, or you may suffer from it yourself. It looks across between red a rash and red goosebumps. I once read a few years back to apply it topically to the affected areas and, sure enough, it really helped me. Ever since that point, I have sought out products with this ingredient.
Skin Care Benefits of Coconut Oil:
There are many skin benefits of coconut oil. In fact, you will find Coconut Oil in our hand scrub, hand cream, body cream, body lotion, and body oil. That’s how much we like it!
Coconut oil is rich in something called Lauric Acid. In fact between 40-50% of coconut oil is actually Lauric Acid. This is a very promising natural treatment for acne. Not just for acne, coconut oil works on dry skin and on skin with eczema and flakiness.
Did you know, though, that there are many other uses for coconut oil?
I’d like to say that I used to be skeptical about some of the other uses. First of all, I used to cringe when I heard people talking about using Coconut Oil for cooking. It goes against so many things you’ve heard about from traditional practitioners because it being a saturated fat. I used to think I’d get clogged arteries or that it’s make me gain more weight or make my blood pressure go up. That is what my internist told me, too.
From my own experience, when I use coconut oil in cooking, it is easier to lose weight. Dr. Oz recently has been talking about the benefits of coconut oil and one of the ones he mentioned is weight loss. He mentioned also how it can treat everything from skin conditions (which we have known), ulcers, and more. In fact, just a couple years ago, Dr. Oz was also skeptical of this oil and then decided to do more research. He now speaks of it regularly on his show.
*It is said that Coconut Oil can help prevent fatty deposits in the liver.
*Coconut Oil is used by many people now to help control diabetes.
*Coconut Oil is used by naturopaths to treat pancreatitis symptoms.
*Many believe Coconut Oil helps your bones absorb magnesium & calcium more effectively.
*Anecdotal evidence shows Coconut Oil can help prevent tooth decay.
More on that last statement– within the last couple weeks, a well-respected Chicago dentist, Dr. Jessica Emery, came out with a statement on the Ayurvedic pratice called Oil Pulling and advocated its use. Oil pulling involves swishing unrefined coconut oil in your mouth for 10-20 minutes per day without swallowing it. After you have swished it around, you spit it out. It is believed that you can remove some of the bacteria and toxins from your mouth that way. Blog posts on the subject have gone viral and almost all of my friends have tried it now and swear by. I am on day 5 of oil pulling. My personal observation– my teeth feel much cleaner. I personally am seeing a bit more whiteness. I drink tea, coffee, and red wine, so this is noticeable to me.
How about you? How do YOU use coconut oil?
Yoga. I cannot get enough.
I have done yoga in the past, but it was through a community ed type of program in a bright school gym. It was neither relaxing nor enjoyable.
Fast forward several years– Vinyasa Flow Yoga. One word: AMAZING.
A few weeks ago, I enrolled in an introductory class at a local yoga studio. The class is in the evening and it is done in a peaceful, beautiful studio. The room is very dim and it is also heated–between 85 and 90 degrees. It is warm and comforting. The heat makes it easier for you to move while you are practicing yoga for 75 minutes.
I have been experiencing many benefits of yoga in these few weeks.
1. Better sleep
I walk out of yoga at 8:45, get home around 9, and then I change shower and change. Yoga gives me healthy cravings, so I have an apple with sunflower seed butter spread on it. I then chat with my husband, check my email one last time (I really am working on unplugging more), and then head off to bed. Normally, I toss and turn. After yoga, though, I fall asleep within minutes of my head hitting the pillow. I sleep through the night and wake up feeling, well, AWAKE. It’s a great feeling.
2. No more achy muscles
I have carpal tunnel and sometimes there is a pain that shoots up my arm–it can be like an invisible cable pulling between by shoulder and wrist. This has improved since I started yoga. My muscles all feel very well stretched and never uncomfortable ad tight. My body feels stronger and more flexible.
3. My skin looks better
With this form of hot yoga, I work up a sweat. Sweating is a form of detox to help shed toxins. Since I have done yoga, my skin looks even healthier.
4. An improvement in emotional health
I am one of those people with a racing mind. I have a hard time sitting still. I am not one of those people who can sit, say “Om”, and be one with my self. HOWEVER, I spend the entire 75 minutes focused on my breathing and fluidity of my movements. Am I worried about the dishes to put away? Homework papers to sign? Work to accomplish? Nope. This 75 minute mental break is a really wonderful thing!
5. I can balance on one foot!
Maybe it’s silly, but I have never been steady on my feet. At my first class, we learned the Tree Pose. This involves standing on one foot while resting the other foot on you thigh. I nearly toppled over! I can do it now for a long period of time. Small steps…but I am proud that I can start something new and really embrace it!
How about you? Have you tried yoga? What benefits have you experienced?
Have you heard of Horst Rechelbacher? You may be unfamiliar with his name, but you no doubt have heard of the company he founded in 1978, Aveda. Mr. Rechelbacher lost his battle with pancreatic cancer last week. He was 72.
Today I’d like to talk about Mr. Rechelbacher’s legacy–and to speak to you about why he has been called the “father of safe cosmetics.” Mr. Rechelbacher’s passion and determination inspired me back when I started questioning ingredients. I did so much reading up on the hows and whys of his passion for safe cosmetics ingredients. In doing so, I considered him (and still do) one of my role models.
In 1978, he dared to try something different. No other companies in the US were talking about herbs and plant extracts. Mr. Rechelbacher’s mother was an herbalist in Austria and he became fascinated by nature and our planet. While he never finished school–in fact, he didn’t go beyond fourth grade–he had passion and a true belief in causes he championed. At the age of 14, he was working as an apprentice at a hair salon and later went on to become a stylist in Rome.
He later settled in Wisconsin and would be injured in a car accident. After the accident, he became interested in Ayurvedic medicine. That is when he renewed his passion for herbs. He began experimenting with ingredients and started crafting hair care products in his kitchen sink. He continued to utilitze nature’s gifts of food, plants, and herbs in his creations which eventually catapulted into Aveda– which began as a two employee company and ultimately sold to Estee Lauder in 1997 for $300 million.
Mr. Rechelbacher was very concerned about the ingredients being put in our personal care products and he set out to raise awareness. When he was formulating his own products, he would actually drink a small amount in front of people so they would see that that were safe enough to put in your body.
In 2004, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics was born and Mr. Rechelbacher helped to finance it. Janet Nudleman, director of program and policy at the Breast Cancer Fund says, “Horst was in many ways the father of safe cosmetics. He took action to address the problem long before most of us knew there was anything to even worry about.”
I think that anyone who has a passion for healthy ingredients and safe cosmetics really owes much of this widespread awareness to the efforts of Mr. Rechelbacher. Here at (seed), we talk about the concept of “looking for better” when it comes to ingredients in body care products. I can’t help but to think Mr. Rechelbacher was looking for better years ago–and that he truly has inspired company owners and natural products enthusiasts across the globe to demand better.
We have four fabulous body oils in the (seed) Body Care line-up and we are so sure you will love them that we are giving 2 (seed) fans a chance to win Body Oil of your choice.
Head over to our Facebook page to enter our giveaway!
1. Most body oils on the market contain fillers, artificial preservatives and lots of chemicals. What you will find on our ingredients listing? Grape seed oil is the first ingredient, followed by coconut, sunflower, jojoba, apricot kernel, olive, and vitamin E. Nothing more, unless you choose one of our blends and then those oils will contain essential oils as well to help you relax, soothe, and decongest. When we say we are committed to giving you the best in natural body care, we mean it!
2. No petrochemicals! Our oil does not contain mineral oil. This is a petrochemical, meaning it is derived from crude oil. You won’t find synthetic oils like that in (seed) Body Oil!
3. Have you ever tried a body oil only to have it leaving your skin with a slippery and greasy feel? While our oils are very nourishing, they do not leave behind a residue. Our natural oils absorb into your skin, leaving it soft and silky.
4. I don’t know about you, but I have accidentally knocked over body oil bottles by my tub before, leaving a drippy mess (and potentially dangerous, too)! What is unique about (seed), is that our oils spritz on to your skin with a handy spray top. You won’t pour too much out either — just spray it right on!
5. The #1 reason to choose our body oil — it will make your skin feel AMAZING! Our deeply moisturizing formula pampers you skin, treats it with natural antioxidants and essential fatty acids & makes a lovely gift!
You deserve a better body oil! Head over to our Facebook page to enter to win yours for Valentine’s Day!
You may have noticed our new Facebook and website graphics. This is not just something catchy–it’s something that I am quite sure means a great deal to our founders, Rebecca and Benjamin.
You see, they are hardworking people. And they appreciate that you are, too.
Aren’t you tired of gimmicks? Are you bothered by ingredients listings 50 hard to pronounce ingredients long? Are you tired of spending money on the latest product only to realize that it was all about packaging or slick ads and not quality?
Are you tired of being swayed into believing product names with “Natural” or “Organic” only to look at the labels and see they contain a plethora of toxins and artificial ingredients?
Have you been duped by catchy wording and buzzwords and have just had enough of spending you hard-earned money on things that are too good to be true?
You are not alone in your frustration. Looking for better?
I am here to tell you that you deserve better.
We believe in transparency. We do not have fancy packaging or advertising. We don’t produce chemical-laden products and promote them as natural. What you see is what you get — (seed) products are TRULY all-natural, wholesome, good for your skin body care products that work.
I’ve been thinking about this subject a great deal lately due to personal experience. I have two facial products I bought in December. They are from a company which makes all-natural facial care items. I have been using the eye cream and the face cream. One day, I grabbed the wrong tube. I mistakenly rubbed the eye cream all over my face. When I noticed my mistake, I was hoping there was nothing to clog my pores since I slathered it on. Truth be told, I didn’t even know that the product was different at first until I saw the tube since it felt the same going on.
Out of curiosity, I turned both products over only to discover that the ingredients were EXACTLY the same. Exactly. When I squeezed them out onto a hard surface, they looked exactly the same. Same consitency, texture, and look when applied side by side. I had been duped. I have been writing about skin care ingredients and consumer issues for years. I would consider myself VERY savvy about ingredients. And I was completely duped. These products marketed as having different uses, called different names, sold at different prizes with one being much more per ounce than the other are one in the same. And I fell for it.
This is not an isolated practice. I have found many items on store shelves that are identical from the same brands. For example, there is a brand out there selling a small bottle of hand cream that is EXACTLY the same as the company’s body cream. The body cream is in a larger tube, while the hand cream contains about 60% less product. Same fragrance. Same exact ingredients. They count on customers to buy both, though–one for the body and another for the hands.
You deserve better. Better practices, better philosophies, better concern for you!
I suppose it is easier for companies to make one giant vat of product and pour it into different containers and label it with different product names. It’s not uncommon. But you deserve better.
If you’ve ever taken a look at the ingredients listings for (seed) Body Care products, you will see that while we use many of the same seed-based ingredients (afterall, it’s all about seedology®!), each product has a different purpose. Therefore, ingredients and formulas are adjusted to make a product do what it should.
For example, our body cream contains different ingredients than the lotion because the lotion is lighter weight and the cream is thick and rich. They both do their jobs, but they are different.
It really is a simple way of looking at it. You work hard. You deserve to have your hard earned money spent on something that does what it says it will do. You deserve to know that the company you are supporting appreciates you and values you.
It’s not just about a better way of relating to our customers — it is about providing you with better ingredients. Anyone can fill a bottle or jar with petrochemicals, fillers, and synthethics. They are more easily accessible and they are cheap. You deserve better, though.
You deserve safe products– products formulated with natural butters and oils. We believe in providing you with gentle, effective products that are vegan, dairy free, soy free, and gluten free.
At the end of the day, you–our customers–are what matters. We want you to have the best and to be able to afford it.
Looking for better? Find the best in (seed) Body Care.
We’ve talked about the questions surrounding artificial fragrance before here on the (seed) blog. I’ve also shared my own thoughts on fragrance and how the chemicals in artificial fragrance have affected my allergies and contributed to my own headaches.
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics just came out with an article today concerning the hazards of artificial fragrance, as well as what you can do as a consumer to help change things and demand changes. There is so much fragrance confusion out there. Let’s clear it up.
First, take a look at that article from the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics.
Why does this matter so much? Like other harmful and potentially harmful ingredients such as formaldehyde releasers, parabens, and harsh cleansing agents, fragrance oils have very questionable ingredients. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be as much awareness or concern for the effects of fragrance.
We all like pretty aromas. I for one love to smell freshly baked apple pies and chocolate chip cookies. I think we all do. These smell comforting and do not cause us to sneeze, weeze, or feel lightheaded. Why? Because these are natural scents.
The problem arises when we attempt to recreate some of the scents in a lab with synthetic chemicals.
Here at (seed), we offer products scents ONLY with natural essential oils (not artificial fragrance) and truly fragrance free products. You will never find artificial fragrance in any products we offer. Since this is a topic with lots of buzz and one we have talked about before, I have compiled our posts on this matter so you can learn more:
Reminder– we recently launched our Fragrance Free Body Cream. Right now it is ONLY available in the (seed) Market. You can purchase it on its own or as part of our Loving Fragrance Free Variety Pack, which is just $28!
What makes your hand scrubs “scrubby” to begin with? The scrubby feeling can come from many things — sugar, salt, jojoba bead, even plastic.
Plastic in your skin care? Yes, unfortunately. I don’t know about you, but when I am slathering on products that have a good chance of being absorbed into my bloodstream, plastic isn’t something I want sinking in. Take a look at some of your scrubbing body products that you may have on hand. Look for “Polyethylene” on the ingredients label. It may say Polyethylene (PE), Polypropylene (PP), Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), or Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA). Packaging often will just say “Microbeads” on the front. This is just another name for polyethylene.
Polyethylene is found in several very popular brands of antibacterial hand soaps, foot scrubs, hand scrubs, body scrubs, and facial scrubs.
This ingredient can be irritating to the skin. And it may just be damaging not just your skin, but the eco-system as well. Studies show that these little microbeads may, in fact, be contaminating our waterways.
They are so tiny that the water filtration systems cannot skim them out, so they end up in the water. Please read more about this study by clicking HERE.
Can you get that scrubbing sensation without plastics? YES!
I have an aquaintance who is an independent consultant for a skin care line. She looooves the company’s hand scrub and no matter what, there is no convincing her that another product could be more effective, healthier, and more affordably priced.
When I looked at the back of the tube for the hand scrub, here are some of the most troubling ingredients I saw: Polyethylene, Triethanolamine, Fragrance, and DMDM Hydantoin.
The Polyethylene is right near the top of the ingredients list. This is the name of on the label that refers to those scrubbing “beads” or particles we mentioned earlier. There is NO need for this junk in your skin care.
Let’s take a look at the ingredients in (seed) Therapeutic Hand Scrub. No petrochemicals, no “iffy” ingredients in terms of health & safety, and no ingredients to hurt fish or contaminate our rivers, lakes, and oceans:
Aqua (Water), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Coconut Oil), Glycerin, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Seed Powder, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Stearic Acid, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Glucoside, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Powder, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice (Organic), Sorbitol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Citrus Paradisi (Pink Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Xanthan Gum, Pectin, Ascorbic Acid, Tocopherol, Gluconolactone, Sodium Benzoate
We are able to give you the “scrubby” effect that helps soften your hands and eliminate dead skin cells by using apricot seed powder & grape seed powder. These are much healthier alternatives to plastics!
A very Happy New Year to all of you from your friends at (seed) Body Care!
We have big news to share with you, and that is the launch of our Grape Seed Enriched Body Cream in Fragrance Free. This helps to round out our wonderful assortment of Fragrance Free products, which also includes our Body Oil, Hand Cream, and Body Lotion.
I am so excited about this launch because I really, really am passionate about having a fragrance free option. Of course (seed) does not use artificial fragrances in any of our products. We use only natural essential oils to provide our lavender and citrus scents because that is the healthiest option.
Why I am selfishly excited about the Fragrance Free Body Cream–
*My husband will use it. He has dry skin and after year, I got him hooked on our Healthy Hand Cream in the fragrance free option. It took time, but he uses it daily now. I am hoping he will use it on his arms and legs. I cannot get him to use the lotion since it’s “the kids’ lotion”, but I am hoping to maybe convince him the cream is just right for him!
*My children use the Fragrance Free Body Lotion. Their skin is SO dry in the winter and Nick (10) has eczema, so the cream will really be great for those patches on his knees.
*I like to wear a natural vanilla-based fragrance and the fragrance free will not compete with that.
There are more pressing healthy living reasons for me to be so excited! There are so few fragrance free body creams on the market and none are like ours. For example, I found a boutique brand body cream that promotes itself as being fragrance free. It is, but the other ingredients are terrible:
Aqua (Water), Propylene Glycol, Petrolatum, Mineral Oil, Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Gluconolactone, Stearyl Alcohol, Cera Alba (Beeswax), PEG-40 Stearate, Sorbitan Stearate, Arginine, Ammonium Hydroxide, Maltobionic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Bisulfite, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, CI 19140 (Yellow 5), CI17200 (Red 33)
Number 2 on the ingredients list is harmful propylene glycol. There are two petrochemicals following that. We also have PEG ingredients, ammonium hydroxide (AKA Ammonia water), silicone, aluminum, 2 types of parabens, and artificial dyes.
Aside from the horrible ingredients, this product sells for $40 for a 3.4 ounce jar!
What is in our 8 ounce jar of Fragrance Free Grape Seed Enriched Body Cream?
Why does “Fragrance Free” matter?
In addition to the health benefits of going fragrance free, I’d love to tell you about the skin benefits of our Grape Seed Enriched Body Cream:
Fragrance free lotions surely all must be the same, right? Since they don’t contain fragrance, a lotion is “just” a lotion. Not so fast! I would like to take a look at three fragrance free body lotions and give you an eye-opening look at how different body lotions can truly be.
Our first lotion to look at is a very popular drugstore body lotion. Many years ago before I knew any better about harmful toxins in skin care, my dermatologist told me about this one for my sensitive skin. I am so happy to know what I do about ingredients now. I don’t know about you, but it is hard to get excited about applying Hydrogentated Polyisobutene to my arms and legs!
Now, I am sharing a department store body moisturizer. It is fragrance free and is promoted as hypoallergenic, which as we talked about before, is nothing more than a buzz word.
This brand has a particular image of lab coats and purity. The ingredients, however, show otherwise. Take a look at the artificial colorants, dozens of chemicals, fillers, and artificial preservatives present in this lotion.
Now let’s take a look at what is in our body lotion, (seed) Fragrance Free Body Lotion. Our product is all-natural and safe for your entire family. It contains wholesome ingredients to truly nourish your skin.
Before you see “fragrance free” on a label and assume the rest of the ingredients are healthy and beneficial, read the whole label! What you find may surprise you.
Our fragrance free lotion contains just what your skin needs and leaves out what it doesn’t!