What is Clean Beauty?

With so much discussion on ‘Clean Beauty’, this month I have been focused upon defining what clean beauty means to and what you should expect from clean beauty products. 

My own beauty brand, Sakrid we have made a very clear definition:

Sakrid Clean Beauty products are made with 100% naturally derived ingredients and include zero synthetic, questionable or harmful ingredients.  They must also be high performing and an absolute pleasure to use.

Sakrid was born due to the realisation that there are potentially harmful ingredients within many of the brands and products that we have all grown-up with.  Nick, myself and our team believe that Clean Beauty is the future of self-care and cosmetics.  If we can produce products that are 100% clean and natural and they work, why would you risk anything else?! 

One of the Sakrid key brand values is education.  In order to help consumers to make informed decisions about the products they choose to use, we want to provide as much ‘debunked’ information as possible.

The term Clean Beauty remains a hazy subject within the beauty and self-care industry: 

Is 97% natural enough?  Is it okay if the product is packaged within 100% virgin plastics? Do the current regulations properly consider the performance of a natural product and the changing perceptions of how products should behave?

I believe this lack of clarity currently exists due to a number of key dilemmas that the industry is facing in light of changing demands from consumers:

1. Products need to be safe and remain safe after opening: Most products are created by using these key ingredient types – Liquid Base or Emollient, Preservatives, Performance Enhancers (to increase ability to foam or produce bubbles for example), and Emulsifiers (stabilisers that bind the ingredients together and keep them mixed). 

There are any number of options that can be used when creating product formulas.  Historically, most of the decisions at corporate level have come down to price and getting through current regulations.  With a growing number of consumers now becoming more conscious of ingredients, this is placing a new pressure on brands to consider both the quality of their ingredients, their supply chain and the questionability of the ingredient.  Most brands that produce natural products argue that the current regulation is outdated, as our understanding of ingredients and their affect on the human body has evolved. 

2. Products (most especially liquids) need to be contained and packaged:  There is a lot of debate around which packaging material is the most environmentally friendly and safe to use.  Aluminium, cardboard, foil, recycled plastics (PIR and PCR), virgin plastics, glass – the list of options all hold positives and negatives.  To us, Clean Beauty means choosing a packaging material that is safe (no leeching of harmful substances into the product from the packaging itself), and environmentally friendly (will not contribute to environmental damage).  I have written a number of posts and articles on our decision to use PCR and PIR as our key packaging material and whilst this is far from a perfect solution, we continue to review all of the alternatives to ensure that we always make the best choices.

3. Products need to perform: Who is satisfied with spending hard earned money on a product that makes gigantic claims but fails to deliver?!  Not me!  And hopefully not you!  Before creating Sakrid, I had a bathroom full of half used natural products.  The issue I found was that although I was satisfied with how safe they were, they didn’t always work effectively.  For example, a natural deodorant that didn’t stop bad odour, or a foaming face wash that didn’t foam.  I knew the hearts of these brands were in the right place, they too believed whole heartedly that natural is always better.  But in order to gain loyalty, brands need to create products that are outstanding!  Many brands that are attempting to switch to more naturally derived ingredients for their formulas are fearful of a drop in product performance and synthetically derived ingredients are designed to perform, so this can be the simplest option.  But it is entirely possible to create products that are natural and perform.  It’s just different to what they have been used to creating.  It’s challenging to find the right mix that covers all the bases.  We like challenge.

To keep things simple for you, in the very least try to avoid the following when you are choosing your beauty and self-care products:

  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) / Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)
  • Parabens
  • Phthalates
  • Propylene Glycol
  • Triclosan
  • Formaldehyde
  • Toluene
  • Sunscreen Chemicals
  • Parfum / Synthetic Fragrances
  • Synthetic Colours

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *