Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Nature vs. Science

As a bonafide cosmetics junkie, I own hoard a plethora of products and there is a clear division within that stash of organic versus chemical.  It has to be one of the major issues that divides the beauty world.  Are you addicted to scientifically sourced wonder creams or do you prefer to go eco with plant-based formulas? Well, I would love to say that I have a distinct loyalty to just one of them but the truth is that I struggle on a weekly basis to make up my mind which team I want to be on.

Let's take a look at some of my favourite not-so-natural brands:

Estee Lauder
Bobbi Brown

And the brands I love that fly the flag for natural ingredients:

Liz Earle

Obviously natural remedies and solutions to beauty related problems have been used since records began.  However the whole organic trend has peaked in the noughties (ughhh...I hate that term) and shows no sign of dying down any time soon.  There is a valid reason for this.  We like to feel that the products we put on our skin are as natural and pure as they possibly can be.  Surely slapping on truck-loads of sulphates, mineral oils and other parabens can't be the secret to flawless beauty?   Why suffocate your skin in simulated ingredients? 

Well the answer to this has to be that scientifically based products often give swifter results and initially appear to make a considerable difference.  I have often been wowed by silicon based hair products that, in the short term, make my hair look amazingly shiny and feel silky soft.  However, if you consistently use a product containing silicon, it actually has a negative effect on your hair.  It can build up and make your tresses dull, lank and lifeless.  So 9 times out of 10, these types of products give short term fixes to a problem that is probably related to diet and lifestyle.  Will I stop using them?...probably not.  Sometimes I'm a quick-fix kinda gal!

Now I would love to renounce all the nasty chemical-based products that fill my cupboards BUT I love my vibrant lipsticks, my shampoos that foam to a gorgeously lush lather and wonder creams and masks that clearly refine my pores and leave my skin feeling better than ever.

That said, some of the most effective products I own are clearly members of team natural.  I adore my Korres Lip Butters, Origins is by far my favourite skincare brand and has been for the last year.  I also swear by Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser which I have used for around 5 or 6 years now.  There IS something to be said for holding out for results that are garnered by nature.  The fact that a girl was shocked when I told her I was 29 last weekend made my day month! On asking how old she though I was, she said "Well, I assumed you were about 21 or 22! I never realised you were THAT old".  Hmmm, now I have written that down, I'm so sure I can take that as a compliment! ha ha.

The products that require those nasty chemicals to make them incredible are bright lipsticks, fake tan and foundation.  I am yet to find an organic version of each product that works as well as my favourite non-organic ones.  It's clear to me that sometimes you need chemicals to give products that extra oomph in colour or super staying power. Until I discover amazing natural alternatives to these beauty wonders, I will have to keep slathering on the chemicals.

But tell me, when you consider your whole make-up and skincare collections, which team holds more HG products for you...Natural ones or Synthetic ones? 
Do you ever feel like you should be investigating more natural ways to look your best?


  1. A mix of organic and natural here and OMG Would NEVER have put you at 29 I would say 23/24. I got asked for ID in M&S the other day buying a bottle of wine, the lady gave me a right ticking off and I had to pull out my passport, I was soooo chuffed haha! Have a llok at my profile pic on my blog and tell me what you think, or am I just deluding myself lol....

  2. Its true nature has given us so many wonderful things, that have been enhanced by scientists to give us even better results! Also, Liz Earle products, as lovely are they are, do contain quite a few synthetic ingredients and always gets wrongly labelled as organic (partly also due to their false advertising); regardless they are still lovely LOVELY products :)

  3. I think the main thing is for a product to really work, be a joy to use and of course be 100% safe. If you can achieve all that by using mostly natural ingredients that's really great but don't confuse 'synthetic' with 'bad for you' – some synthetics are completely safe and also beneficial. Some brands use the words “organic” and “natural” as a marketing selling point but what should really sell their products is how good they are and how effective.

  4. Love this! I've been looking for a new cleanser, and been meaning to try origins. I'll definitely look into it! Very fun read :) xo


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