If I had a dollar for every time I was asked this question! There just isn’t a simple answer to this seemingly open-ended question.
Do you mean what percentage of the formula is natural? And do you want clarification on ingredients that are “natural” or “naturally derived”?
I was recently asked this question and when I delved further into the topic the client wanted something that was, in particular, aluminium free. So my thought, naturally (pun intended), was “Isn’t aluminium natural?”
So, the thing about natural products is that we need to ask – what makes a product natural?
If we were to use ingredients that were 100% natural, then effective preservatives can’t be added to the formula which ultimately means the products have little to no shelf life. Or in other words, they would expire within a few months of being manufactured. The problem here lies in the fact that products are stored by the manufacturer for a certain amount of time and then they are stored on the shelf in the hairdresser for a bit longer as well so by the time it makes it to you, the end consumer, you might have a few weeks before it expires. I know I want my shampoo to last longer than a few weeks (and so do all the major manufacturers)! So, in terms of most professional products that are available for purchase through retail outlets they aren’t going to be 100% natural, no matter what their marketing says!
ME&MY products contain natural extracts and naturally derived ingredients but we also put in a few other things to help the product do its job as well! And we won’t lie to you and tell you otherwise.
It is important to remember that natural isn’t always better. There are many natural plants and extracts that are harmful to humans, as well as chemical ingredients. As an example lavender is an amazing natural plant with many benefits – in small doses! If you over-use lavender it can have some unusual side effects and should not be used in early stages of pregnancy. The important thing to ensure is that the formulation is well balanced and contains high quality ingredients from well-known suppliers. It’s also vital that ingredients have been researched and tested by a chemist that knows what they’re doing and the effects those ingredients can have in relation to how the product will be used – whether it’s natural or not!
We live in an oddly contradictory world because we all want “natural” but we want effective! So, I guess it depends on what is most important to you. Personal care products have evolved over many years in order to provide products that do what they say they’ll do whilst still being cost effective.
Cosmetics and hair care are heading towards some great inventions and innovations in the natural field; however, we aren’t quite there. And, when we do get there they are likely to be expensive. As with everything new until there is a high demand for it the costs will remain high. ME&MY is working closely with chemists to create leading edge products to satisfy everyone. In the meantime, we believe we have a happy balance with key ingredients such as Native Australian Orchid Extract, Guarana, Caffeine, Cacao, Coconut Oil and Light Illuminators that are all naturally derived. As well as those there are a few ingredients that are not all natural but they do mean you are buying a stable formulation with a decent shelf life that achieves the claims we make about the product.
It is currently extremely easy for cosmetics to be labelled “natural” as the Australian regulations are yet to catch up with this latest trend. Be aware of what you are buying and ask lots of questions about the ingredients in any product with claims of being all natural.
ME&MY has a high ethical code that means we will only ever tell you the absolute TRUTH! If you have any questions or would like further information please contact us.
P.S. Organic claims are another discussion again and is categorised differently to ‘natural’. Blog for that topic to come soon!