Organic Beauty Week with The Soil Association Part 1

It’s Organic Beauty Week, or should I say #organicbeautyweek !

Following on from the #beautybabble talk on Monday, I thought I would take some time to discuss more in depth the organic certifying bodies and take a look at some of my favourite organic beauty brands! From #beautybabble I could tell there was still some confusion around what is an organic brand, what is a natural brand, and even what is neither natural or organic.

As Organic Beauty3 Week is a Soil Association-affiliated week, I thought I would take a look at their certification body first. The Soil Association was founded in 1946 by a group of farmers, scientists and nutritionists who observed a direct connection between farming practice and plant, animal, human and environmental health.

The Soil Association have two levels of “organic-ness”. Firstly, when a product is over 95% organic, excluding water, then it can use the word ‘organic’ in the product name. Secondly, when a product is 70-95% organic, excluding water, this product can be certified organic. However, the product cannot use the word ‘organic’ in the product name, and must state the percentage of organic ingredients.

Even just one certifying body has two entry levels for organic-ness, so no wonder people are confused! We’ll be looking at the other types of organic and natural certification as the week progresses. But I thought I’d leave you with an introduction and some review links for my favourite Soil Association brands.

Soil Association Beauty Brand #1 – Balm Balm

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Founded in 2005 by husband and wife team Glenda and Haydn Taylor. Glenda is an aromatherapist, perfumer and natural formulation consultant, and Balm Balm was born out of her vision to realise a 100% organic skincare range that was still affordable.

It’s a while since I’ve had any Balm Balm in my life but I can still smell their Rose Geranium Face Balm, and their Super Light Coconut Cleanser is a godsend for stressed out, congested skin, or skin over-laden with product.

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Soil Association Beauty Brand #2 – Botanicals

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Founded in 2004 by Wendy Stirling after one of her daughers suffered a severe reaction to a natural-sounding shampoo. The aim at Botanicals is to provide a range of beauty products as cloe to nature as possible, harnessing the pure power of plants.

I am currently putting the Mandarin and Chamomile Face Polish through its paces, and the Rose Camellia Face Serum, but read my Botanicals Body Oil and Hand & Body Balm review here and my Botanicals Lemongrass and Ginger Body Polish review here.

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Soil Association Beauty Brand #3 – Essential Care

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Essential Care launched in 2003, on a mission to make the purest skincare on earth, and is run by family team Margaret, Colin and daughter Abi. Margaret has been researching natural formulations sinc the 1980s and was motivated by hers and her family’s ver sensitive, eczema-prone skin. Essential Care create products from ingredients each with therapeutic properties and with the minimal processing possible.

This year saw a rebrand of some Essential Care products, to be called Odylique by Essential Care, “Odyl” means the power of nature.

Read about their Odylique by Essential Care Superfruit Concentrate here, Coconut Candy Body Scrub and Gentle Herbal Shampoo here, and my Odylique Odyssey here.

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Soil Association Beauty Brand #4 – Green People

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Charlotte set about creating the Green People brand in 1994 (although she did not quite know it then!), as her daughter was suffering with multiple skin allergies and eczema. It was in 1997 that Green People was born and in 1999 Charlotte sat on the board of the Soil Asociation’s committee that designed the first standards for organic beaut4y.

Read my review of Green People Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner here, and part one of Green People Age Defy+ here and part two here.

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Soil Association Beauty Brand #5 – Herbfarmacy

I have to admit I have only tried one product from the Herbfarmacy range, but I was so impressed I had to include them on this list. It’s the Herbfarmacy Nail & Cuticle Oil with Horsetail and Calendula. Founded by Paul Richards (who looking at his biography probably knows more about plants than anyone in the world ever!) who has a commercially run farm where he grew Comfrey initially, before going on to develop a range of healing ointments using combinations of herbal oils that he grew on his farm. This included Chickweed, Calendula, Marshmallow and Hypericum.\

Herbfarmacy-Nail-and-Cuticle-Oil with horsetail and calendula

 

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1 Comment

  • Petra (@BeHealthyFeelGd)

    Great post Rebecca! I liked your explanation of ‘organic’ and it’s true, it can be confusing. I haven’t tried all the brands you mentioned here yet, but would love to. I’ve used some of Green People’s products which are great and I am currently trying Mandarin&Chamomile Hydrating Mist from Bontanicals which is also great – look forward to trying more of Botanicals’ products though. I think there is just too much choice out there!

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