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Shampoo Bars

Shampoo Bars

Shampoo Bars

Natural shampoo soap bars are just like soap but made with ingredients that are kind to hair. With no synthetic fragrances or ingredients, the shampoo bars on Pure.Company are all made with 100% natural ingredients, with no SLS, SLES or parabens – giving your hair a gentle and balanced clean free of nasties.

Shampoo Bars
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The problem with shampoo

Liquid shampoo, as we know it today, was first produced in 1927 by German pharmacist Hans Schwarzkopf. Before this, hair was washed with soap or a mixture of herbs and plant extracts.

Shampoo then developed to become more widely used after the 1930s when soap was replaced with synthetic surfactants. Then more and more chemicals were added to make shampoos cheaper to produce making them widely used.

Most commercial shampoo formulas contain SLS and SLES as a cleaning and foaming agent. As these chemicals are sometimes too effective at cleaning it can strip our hair and scalp of its natural oils, causing the dandruff, itchy scalp and dry, brittle hair that these very shampoo claim to stop. Commercial shampoos are also chock full of chemicals like plastics (for better consistency), resins, waxes and silicones which promises thicker hair, no dandruff, hair strengthening, smoothing and so on, but ultimately leaving hair dull, listless and unmanageable.

What are shampoo bars?

Natural shampoo soap bars are just like soap but made with ingredients that are kind to hair. With no synthetic fragrances or ingredients, the shampoo bars on pure.company are all made with 100% natural ingredients, with no SLS, SLES or parabens – giving your hair a gentle and balanced clean free of nasties.

There is zero waste in the production of shampoo bars and you can be sure that all the bars sold by us is never tested on animals.

They come either wrapped in paper or in compostable/ biodegradable packaging. It’s a perfect switch to make if you are thinking about lessening your plastic use or want to have a more environmentally friendly solution to your daily cleansing. One bar of shampoo soap equates to three bottles of off-the-shelf shampoo. Think of all that plastic that is not going to end up in landfill!

Their effectiveness in cleaning your hair the right way (read on to find out why and how) and giving you that beautifully healthy, lustrous hair, have won them converts from all corners of the beauty world. Once you’ve found the right shampoo bar you won’t ever want to go back to mass-produced, chemical laden commercial shampoos.

Using a shampoo bar

The most important thing to remember when you first switch to using shampoo bars is – Don’t give up. Every hair is different depending on how much product you have been used to using. Normally, the first week (if you wash your hair everyday) or atleast 5 first washes with a shampoo bar is the adjustment period for your hair and scalp, but there are people for whom it may take a few weeks for their hair to fully adjust.

If you have dry and brittle hair to start with, for example, you probably have been using shampoos with formulas that will coat your hair with silicones. You may notice your hair feeling greasy or heavy after the first washes. So, what the shampoo bar has to do is slowly and gently wash away all those years of artificial gunk from your hair. Your scalp too will be getting used to not being stripped of its natural oils, hence will have to learn to stop over-producing these oils.

Keep at it and eventually your scalp will re-balance and you will be rewarded with healthy, shiny lustrous hair and dandruff-free scalp. You will love how your hair texture feels!

How to use a shampoo bar

  1. Brush/comb dry hair first. This is an important step  especially if you use styling products.
  2. Wet hair thoroughly.
  3. Wet and lather up your shampoo bar in your hands, then apply lather to hair from root to tip. Alternatively, you can rub the bar directly onto hair and lather. Just remember to work the shampoo into the hair with water and lather well. The first wash will not produce much lather as the shampoo will be washing away all the accumulated residue from commercial shampoos, dirt and oils. The second wash and so on will produce more lather.
  4. Rinse well with plenty of water. If you have long hair, pay special attention to the middle back of your hair and make sure you have rinsed out all of the soap.
  5. Finally, rinse with some apple cider vinegar mixed with water. You will find that at first you might need to rinse with apple cider vinegar after every wash but after your hair has adjusted to using a shampoo bar, you only need this rinse once a week.

Why rinse with vinegar?

Time for a little biology lesson. Our skin and scalp have a natural protective layer called the acid mantle which is a very fine film on top of the outer layer (epidermis) of your skin. It is our body’s first line of defence against bacteria, viruses and harmful foreign bodies. It also prevents moisture loss from our skin cells, keeping the skin soft and supple.

The acid mantle is made from a slightly acidic mixture of sebum (the oily secretion produced by your sebaceous glands, those tiny ducts next to your hair follicles) and sweat from your pores. The bad news is that this delicate and important layer is frequently damaged by such things as over cleansing, pollution, central heating, air conditioning, sun, skincare ingredients and shampoos containing SLS, resulting in an inadequate or excessive sebum production.

What does all this mean for your hair? How does our skin acid mantle’s health effect our hair?

The acid mantle keeps our hair cuticle layer (outermost layer of hair) tight and compact, which is in its strongest state. When the skin’s natural acid barrier is disrupted or damaged by strongly alkaline shampoos, it causes the hair to swell and stretches out the cuticle layer. This in turn makes our hair lose its strength, elasticity and lustre – causing all those tangles and dull matted hair a.k.a bad hair day hair!

So, all in all, happy balanced skin acid mantle = happy, balanced, healthy hair.

And here’s where rinsing with Raw Apple Cider vinegar comes into the equation. Because, apple cider vinegar has a pH of around 3 (acidic), it helps to restore the natural the pH of the skin which in turn, hardens and flattens the hair cuticle, giving you shiny, flowy and strong hair. All without a fake chemical in sight. As an added bonus, apple cider vinegar is also rich in vitamins B and C which are good for your hair and scalp.

How to use apple cider vinegar as a rinse:

  1. Mix 3 to 5 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to 1 cup (about 200ml) of water. Experiment with the dilution that works best for your hair type, with dry hair use less apple cider vinegar and more with oily hair.
  2. Pour mixture over hair, working it into scalp.
  3. Leave for a minute.
  4. Rinse thoroughly. Don’t worry about the vinegar smell, it goes away quickly when hair dries.,skin 

Have you got any tips on how you use shampoo bars? Has your transition to them been smooth? Leave a review of what you think about using shampoo bars or share your tips for a successful transition.

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Skincare Routine by Skin Type

Skin Care Routine by skin type

Your Daily Skincare Routine by Skin Type

A skincare routine tailored to your skin type is essential for a healthy, blemish free and glowing complexion. Forget elaborate chemical concoctions that strips away at your skin which you then need more chemicals to replace, replenish and rebalance your natural skin.

Skin Care Routine by skin type
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Although your skin type is down to your genes, there are steps to take to calm skin problems by looking at the whole picture. Rather than reaching out for products that promise a quick-fix miracle, assess your everyday self.

Stress causes hormonal imbalances which can affect your skin’s health.  Put aside some time every day for relaxing and some me-time. Let go of the stresses and frustrations of the day with exercise, some light stretches or a good walk.

Have you been taking care of yourself and what you eat? Sleep well, drink plenty and eat simple should be your mantra as there is nothing better for your skin’s health than these three things. Get some good quality sleep – no constant Netflix bingeing till 3 in the morning! Drink plenty of water – a hydrated body = hydrated skin. Cut down on highly processed and sugary foods and instead eat a diet high in antioxidants and low in animal products. A more plant-based diet has been shown to reduce inflammation and sebum production of the skin as well as balancing hormones and providing the essential nutrients you need for that glowing skin.

Sunscreen

An essential step in your skincare routine for any skin type would be sunscreen. Sun exposure without protection can lead to skin damage leading to visible aging signs like wrinkles, fine lines and dark spots. Keep in mind that you can even get burnt on cloudy days. Applying a broad spectrum sunscreen should always be the last step in your skin care routine.

Shade™ All Natural SPF25 Sunscreen has only 4 natural ingredients and uses uncoated non-nano Zinc Oxide which is widely acknowledged as offering the safest, broadest-spectrum sun protection possible. Free from parabens and all harmful chemicals that are usually found in off-the-shelf sunscreens, it is non-toxic and safe for all skin types.

Sunscreen should always be applied generously half an hour before going outside. If you are spending your day out in the sun just remember that

  1. Sunscreen should be reapplied atleast every two hours (or more often if you are in and out of water)
  2. Sunscreen does not extend the amount of time you can stay in the sun, if you feel you are beginning to burn that’s your body telling you you need to move out of the sun altogether and get some shade. Limit the amount of time you spend in the sun at its peak between 11 am and 3 pm.

So now we’ve covered the importance of sunscreen read on for our skincare routines matching your skin type.

Oily / Acne-Prone Skin Routine

Skin greasier then the grill pan at an all-day breakfast joint? It’s tempting to exfoliate and cleanse the life out of your oily skin every chance you get but that would only exacerbate the problem as over-washing and harsh scrubbing can encourage your skin’s natural oil production.

Keeping the skin cells lightly hydrated is important with Oily/Acne prone skin types as hydration and moisture loss is key to rebalancing and ‘normalising’ your skin.

1. Cleanse

In the case of oily skin, oil breeds bacteria and bacteria leads to breakouts and blemishes. Keep your skin clean with sulphate-free and detergent-free (SLS free) cleansers – the key is to use a product that will cut the oil but not dry out your skin.

Go for a cleanser containing Tea Tree Oil as it can help clarify your skin by lifting oil and dirt out of clogged skin pores. The strong antibacterial properties of Tea Tree Oil also helps to reduce the causes of swelling and irritation of the skin so is particularly effective in treating acne.

Wash your face using warm water to open the pores and let the cleanser do its job. We would recommend Bloomtown’s Black Clay & Tea Tree Oil soap or Pure Lakes Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Cleanser, both are made with only 100% natural ingredients and SLS free. Finish by splashing some cold water on to your face and pat dry.

Bloomtown Black Clay and Tea Tree Soap
Bloomtown Black Clay & Tea Tree Soap,100g , £7.50
Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Cleanser
Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Cleanser, 250ml, £22

2. Tone

An alcohol-free toner is best for oily skin so as not to aggravate your skin too much.  The antiseptic and skin soothing geranium in Pure Lakes’ Neroli & Geranium Flower Water Toner will gently calm inflamed skin and improve and brighten skin complexion. Neroli, with its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, is ideal for oily and blemished skin, helping to maintain moisture levels and balance oily skin.

Pure Lakes Neroli & Geranium Flower Water Toner
Pure Lakes Neroli & Geranium Flower Water Toner, 100ml, £9

3. Moisturise

Don’t fall into that trap of thinking that your oily skin doesn’t need any moisturising. Keeping the skin cells lightly hydrated is important as hydration and moisture loss is key to rebalancing and ‘normalising’ your skin.

Opt for oil-free moisturisers such as Pure Lakes’ Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Gel which is a light and easily absorbed gel that will gently hydrate and soften skin. It is enriched with Vitamin E, Hyaluronic Acid, Aloe Vera, Avocado and Rosehip Oil to help maintain moisture, and balance problem skin.

Pure Lakes Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Gel
Pure Lakes Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Gel, 50ml, £15
Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Facial Moisturising Gel
Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Facial Moisturising Gel, 100ml, £14

Extras

Exfoliation – Twice a week at night is good idea to help with blocked pores. Again, just as with the cleanser, choose a detergent-free scrub and of course nothing with any environmentally-damaging microbeads. Pure Lakes’ Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Exfoliator is infused with antibacterial Tea Tree oil, calming Aloe Vera and natural Jojoba beads to gently buff away dead skin cells and other pollutants.

Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Exfoliator
Pure Lakes Aloe Vera, Tea Tree & Frankincense Foaming Facial Exfoliator, 250ml, £26

Mask – Indulge in a gentle clay mask once a week. We’re loving this one from Bloomtown which contains black clay and six acne-fighting essential oils, including Tea Tree Oil. Just remember this mask doesn’t dry out since it has a glycerine (plant-derived) base that help deliver the acne-fighting essential oils directly to pores.

 

Bloomtown Black Clay Face Mask Tea Tree
Bloomtown Black Clay Face Mask with Tea Tree, 60ml, £12

Dry Skin Routine

You may have dry skin if your face feels ‘tight’ or itchy or even hurts when you smile for example. Scaly, peeling and ashy skin is not really a look to go for. Thankfully dry skin can generally be treated by tweaking your skincare routine and following some simple rules – don’t wash with hot water, don’t use harsh soaps and cleaners, moisturise and moisturise!

1. Cleanse

For dry skin types, choose alcohol and fragrance-free cleansers. Keep it simple and gentle.

Start by removing makeup with a balm like Living Naturally’s Chamomile & Rose Beauty Balm. Simply warm a little (around a 10p coin’s worth, depending on how much makeup you wear) on your fingertips, massage into your face, adding a little water if you like, and remove with a warm flannel.

Follow up with a soap free cleanser such as Pure Lakes’ Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser which gently cleanses the face without stripping your skin of its natural defences. Living Naturally’s Unscented Castile Olive Oil Soapnut Soap and their Oat Milk & Calendula Soapnut Soap are both beautifully mild, soothing and nourishing soaps that are suitable for very dry and sensitive skin (and can both be used on babies). Always wash your skin with warm water bordering on cool, never hot water as that can strip your face of the natural oils. Gently pat dry your face

Living Naturally Chamomile & Rose Beauty Balm
Living Naturally Chamomile & Rose Beauty Balm, 50ml, £10
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser, 250ml, £22
Living Naturally Unscented Castile Olive Oil Soapnut Soap
Living Naturally Unscented Castile Olive Oil Soapnut Soap, 90g, £4

2. Moisturise

It goes without saying that moisturising is very important for those with dry skin. Apply your moisturiser just after patting your face dry, so while skin is slightly damp, to lock in the moisture.

Pure Lakes’ Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Cream is a Pure Company team favourite! It is rich and moisturising without being oily and kept our skin perfectly peachy during the harsh winter. The cream is great as a day and night cream but for that extra moisture boost, try Pure Lakes’ Rosehip, Camellia & Kiwi Seed Facial Oil. A nutrient and omega rich face oil, with the nourishing combination of Kiwi Seed Oil, Raspberry Seed oil, Rosehip oil and Camellia oil, this easily absorbed Face Oil will replenish moisture and revitalise your skin. Use on its own or massage into face before putting on your night cream.

Pure Lakes Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Cream
Pure Lakes Geranium, Lavender & Ylang Ylang Facial Hydration Cream, 50ml, £18
Pure Lakes Rosehip, Camellia & Kiwi Seed Facial Oil
Pure Lakes Rosehip, Camellia & Kiwi Seed Facial Oil, 30ml, £16

Extras

Exfoliation – A gentle scrub once a week will brighten your skin. The Jojoba beads in Pure Lakes’ Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Exfoliator will gently buff away dead skin cells and other pollutants for a clearer skin.

Pure Lakes Soap Free Facial Rosehip Seed Exfoliator
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Exfoliator, 250ml, £26

MaskBloomtown’s Blue Clay Face Mask with soothing Bentonite and Indigo Leaf has a non-drying plant glycerin base and added moisturising from coconut extract and fermented Radish Root. This award winning mask is moisturising enough to be used every other day.

Bloomtown Blue Clay Face Mask
Bloomtown Blue Clay Mask with Soothing Bentonite & Indigo Leaf, 60ml, £12

Sensitive Skin Routine

Sensitive skin is hard to define, but if your skin gets irritated by most things that don’t bother other people then most likely you do have sensitive skin. There’s no one rule that everyone should follow when it comes to what ingredient you should avoid as everyone is different, but some products can cause more problems than others, and some general guidelines can make living with sensitive skin easier.

As with dry skin, avoid fragrances in your lotions and cleansers. Just remember though, even if something says it is ‘unscented’ it doesn’t mean it is free from fragrances to mask the chemical smells of the product. What you should look for is ‘fragrance-free’ on your products. Even essential oils used in natural products can cause irritation for some sensitive skins.

Stay away from chemical preservatives like parabens as they can aggravate even normal skin.

Just as with dry skin, avoid products with alcohol in toners and detergent-based cleansers (products containing SLS).

1. Cleanse

Keep it simple and gentle.

Start by removing makeup with a balm like Living Naturally’s Fragrance Free Healing Soapnut Salve. Simply warm a little (around a 10p coin’s worth, depending on how much makeup you wear) on your fingertips; massage into your face, adding a little water if you like; and remove with a warm flannel. 

Follow up with a soap free cleanser such as Pure Lakes’ Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser which gently cleanses the face without stripping your skin of its natural defences. Living Naturally’s Unscented Castile Olive Oil Soapnut Soap is a beautifully mild, soothing and nourishing soap.

Living Naturally Fragrance Free Healing Salve
Living Naturally Fragrance Free Healing Organic Soapnut Salve, 60ml, £10
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Soap Free Facial Cleanser, 250ml, £22

2. Moisturise

With sensitive skins it is always the case that the less chemicals the better. Try sticking to natural plant-based moisturisers where if you read the ingredients, you could actually identify what they are without having a degree in chemical science.

Pure Chimp Facial Oil is packed full of all skin-calming and restoring ingredients like Safflower Oil, Sunflower Oil,  Hemp Oil, Banana Extract, Sea Buckthorn Oil. Smells divine and has a light and easily absorbed consistency.

Pure Lakes Neroli, Rosehip & Frankincense Facial Oil is a good face oil to use before sleep. The Neroli Oil in this is known to heal redness and irritation to the skin and Rosehip oil is packed with beauty essentials like anti-inflammatory fatty acids and vitamins A and C, helping skin to nourish and moisturise skin.

Consider using Living Naturally’s Fragrance Free Salve on particularly dry and cold days, either on it’s own or thinly over your moisturiser as an extra protective barrier to moisture loss. The salve can also be used as lip balm and on dry and irritated patches of skin.

Pure Chimp Natural Facial Oil, £9.95
Pure Lakes Neroli, Rosehip & Frankincense Facial Oil
Pure Lakes Neroli, Rosehip & Frankincense Facial Oil, 50ml, £23

Extras

MaskBloomtown’s Blue Clay Face Mask with soothing Bentonite and Indigo Leaf has a non-drying plant glycerin base and added moisturising from coconut extract and fermented Radish Root. This award winning mask is moisturising enough to be used every other day.

Bloomtown Blue Clay Face Mask with Soothing Bentonite & Indigo Leaf
Bloomtown Blue Clay Mask with Soothing Bentonite & Indigo Leaf, 60ml, £12

Normal Skin Routine

Your skin isn’t too dry or too oily and doesn’t react angrily to every new product you try. You might have the occasional breakouts and oily t-zones, but that would usually be down to poor diet, environmental factors or when you are a little run down. 

Even though you are blessed with well behaved skin, you should still be mindful what you put on it. Stick to natural ingredients with no harsh chemicals to keep your skin healthy and glowing.

1. Cleanse

As with all skin types, stay away from really harsh sulphate-based cleansers. Instead, opt for a gentle foaming cleanser like Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Foaming Facial Cleanser which is enriched with Vitamin E, Avocado and Rosehip Seed oil. Any of Living Naturally’s Soapnut soap bar is good for cleansing the face as they are so mild and gentle but packed full of active ingredients to boost your skin. Our favourites for normal skin are the Lavender & Geranium and Bay Laurel Castile Soaps.

For night time cleansing, remove makeup and pollutants from the day with Annwyn Botanicals’ Gentle Rosewater Cleanser & Makeup Remover – a gentle rosewater skin cleanser combined with nutrient rich Castor oil, known for its rich cleansing, anti-viral and excellent anti-oxidant properties, containing many compounds which help to fight off the effects of aging. Follow up night time cleansing with exfoliation about 3 times a week or every other night. Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Foaming Facial Exfoliator being a perfect follow up after their foaming facial cleanser.

Pure Lakes Foaming Facial Cleanser Rosehip Seed
Pure Lakes Rosehip Seed Foaming Facial Cleanser, 250ml, £22
Living Naturally Bay Laurel Soapnut Soap
Living Naturally Soapnut Soaps, 90g, £4
Annwyn Botanicals gentle rosewater cleanser
Annwyn Botanicals Gentle Rosewater Cleanser & Makeup Remover, 120ml, £14

2. Tone

A non-drying, gentle and alcohol free toner is best to remove any remaining impurities after cleansing and prepares your skin for moisturising. Pure Lakes’ refeshingly scented Rose & Glycerin Flower Water Toner is a hydrating and natural toner that leaves your skin glowing.

Pure Lakes Neroli & Geranium Flower Water Toner
Pure Lakes Rose & Glycerin Flower Water Toner, 100ml, £9

3. Moisturise

Use the right moisturiser for the time of year. A lighter even gel-based moisturiser is perfect for those hot summer months and a creamy and rich moisturiser will protect your skin during the harsher colder autumn/winter months. Switch between a lighter or creamier moisturiser whenever you think it is more suitable for your skin.

The divine smelling Pure Lakes Rose, Jojoba & Frankincense Facial Hydration Cream is a great cream for everyday use leaving your skin luxuriously silky soft. Use a 

Pure Lakes Rose, Jojoba & Frankincense Facial Hydration Cream
Pure Lakes Rose, Jojoba & Frankincense Facial Cream, 15ml, £18

Extras

Mask – Indulge in a relaxing face mask twice a week from Wild Olive’s range of clay based face masks which are Enriched with vitamins and minerals to cleanse, nourish and tone your skin.

Wild Olive Face Mask
Wild Olive Face Masks, £3.99
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The Edit – 26/8/18

The Edit

The Multi-Use Wonders

This week we will be looking at products that are multi-functional and packs twice the punch.

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Living Naturally Organic Castile Soap
Living Naturally Organic Soapnut Castile Soap

Living Naturally Organic Soapnut Castile Soap, 500ml, £12.00

This award winning organic castile soap is made from organic oils and organic soapnut fruit extract. It is a vegan wonder product that is completely biodegradable, phosphate free and truly multi-use.

Use it in your washing machine or for hand washing your clothes in place of detergent. It cleans clothes brilliantly and removes stains effectively – using less than normal detergents (2 teaspoons is enough for normal loads and just 4 teaspoons for dirtier and larger loads). Completely toxin free, with no foaming agents or fillers and has zero ecological impact!

Use around the house for cleaning floors, dishes, countertops, pets and veggies. Even with all that cleaning power, it is mild enough to be used on face, hands, hair and body as a wash. A truly remarkable product – completely eco-friendly and effective.

Bloomtown Nourishing Body and Bath Oil, 100ml, £10.00

A truly versatile, non-greasy and easily absorbed oil. Bloomtown’s Nourishing Oils are expertly blended with antioxidant-rich Meadowfoam, Sesame and Sweet Almond Oils as well as healing Vitamin E.

The oils come in Bloomtown’s six signature scents – The Meadow, The Grove, The Woods, The Café, The Rose Garden and The Hedgerow. Each scent is so completely unique and captivating you’ll want to own them all!

The oil blends can be used in place of your moisturiser (beautifully moisturised and silky smooth skin ahead!), for an indulgent bath, as an overnight hair treatment and for a nice relaxing massage too. In fact, it’s great as a makeup remover too – simply massage into skin, cover with a warm, damp cloth and wipe off all traces of your day from your face.

Bloomtown Nourishing Body and Bath Oil
Bloomtown Nourishing Bath & Body Oil
Living Naturally Man Balm
Living Naturally Man Balms

Living Naturally Organic Man Balm, 60ml, £10

An award-winning herbal all-in-one balm for men. Packed with the softening and regenerative ingredients of soapnuts, cocoa butter, shea, jojoba and hemp. An easily absorbed and non-greasy balm in three blends – fragrance free, Bay & Lavender and Sandalwood & Orange.

This all-natural, vegan and versatile man balm can be used as a face and body moisturiser (it’s great for those dry patches on your hands and feet), beard balm, aftershave balm or even as a hair pomade (hair styling balm). A little goes a long way with this balm, so apply sparingly. Throw a jar in your suitcase and you’ll be good to go for your travels too!

Zao Cream Eye Shadow

£17.00

Zao make 100% natural and organic, premium make-up, primarily packaged in bamboo and are mostly refillable. The Zao Cream Eyeshadows has a special texture which allows it to be used as a skin corrector, lipstick or blush. With skin protecting Organic Carnauba Wax, softening and healing Organic Avocado Oil, skin-regenerating Bamboo Powder and wrinkle-fighting Organic Pomegranate Extract.

  • The 251 (Copper) can be used as a blusher and a long-wearing lipstick because of its texture.
  • The 252 (Bamboo) is an ideal corrector to cover redness.
  • The 253 (Amethyst) as 251, can be used as long-lasting lipstick or blush. It also corrects yellow tones.
  • The 254 (Golden Bronze) is the ultimate corrector for purple tone with its yellow hue.
Zao Make up Cream Eyeshadow
Zao Cream Eyeshadow
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Castile Soap

Castile Soap

Castile soap, the environmentally sound, plant-based body and household cleaning choice for savvy green people. But what exactly is it and what makes this soap so truly versatile?

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What is Castile Soap?

Castile soap, named after the Castile region of Spain where it originates from, was soap made by mixing lye and olive oil to make a hard-set cleansing bar. Castile soap is today known as an all-natural vegetable-oil-based soap made using either olive, coconut or hemp oils or other oils like almond, avocado and walnut.

What to look for in a Castile soap?

As with all things good for you in skincare or food, the less ingredients the better. Ideally, a liquid or bar Castile soap should only contain 3 ingredients – lye (either potassium or sodium hydroxide), water and oil. Potassium hydroxide is used to make liquid Castile soap and sodium hydroxide for solid Castile soap (after saponification process, none of the sodium and potassium hydroxide remains in the soap).

The traditional oil used in making Castile soap is olive oil, but palm oil can be used too. When this is the case, make sure that the oil comes from sustainable sources. If it is not written on the product label, then enquire with the manufacturer. Castile soap is a versatile, vegan, biodegradable, non-toxic and phosphate free cleaner with no impact on the environment so should be made with ingredients that are sustainable and eco-friendly.

What can Castile soap be used for?

Apart from the normal uses of soap as a cleanser for face, hands and body, Castile soap can be used with water to clean just about anything else around the house – laundry, counters, sinks, bathtubs, floors and toilets.

Due to its natural ingredients and chemical-free formulation, natural Castile soaps without the addition of essential oils are exceptionally mild and safe for babies, although they should be kept away from the eye area as they are not ‘tear-free’. (Most tear-free formulations use a synthetic numbing agent – yet another chemical additive). You could even use fragrance -free Castile soap on pets.

It can be used to control insects on plants in the house and around the garden. If it is properly diluted, it can safely be used to wash vegetables too.

Take a look at our selection of our pure fragrance free Castile soap in liquid form and soap bars below.

PURE TIP: Don’t combine alkaline Castile soap with an acid like vinegar that you might also use around the house. The reaction cancels out the potency of both ingredients and can leave objects and surfaces with a white film that is difficult to remove.

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SLS and SLEs

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES)

Many products labelled ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ still contain Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES). Learn more about these two very common ingredients and their potential health problems.

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What are they?

 

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) is a synthetic organic compound which is used as an emulsifying agent, behaving similarly to soap. Being derived from inexpensive coconut and palm oils, SLS is a common component of many household products (hand soaps, washing-up liquid) and personal products (soaps, body wash, mouthwash, bubble baths, shampoo, mascara).

Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES) is a very effective foaming agent and in part for its thickening effect. Derived from ethoxylated lauryl alcohol and used in many cosmetic products for their cleaning and emulsifying properties behaving similarly to soap.

SLS and SLES can be used in varying concentrations as a detergent and an effective surfactant in any tasks requiring the removal of oily stains and residues; for example, it is found in higher concentrations in industrial products including engine degreasers, floor cleaners, and car wash soaps.

Should we be worried about SLS and SLES?

 

Although there is debate surrounding SLS and cancer, studies have so far shown that SLS is not carcinogenic when applied directly or consumed. It also appears “to be safe in formulations designed for discontinuous, brief use followed by thorough rinsing from the surface of the skin” in a report by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) in 2005.

Nonetheless, like all detergent surfactants, SLS and SLES do remove oils from the skin so therefore, can cause skin and eye irritation and may worsen skin problems in people with hyper sensitive skin.

A major concern with SLES, is contamination with the potentially toxic 1,4-dioxane which is formed as a by-product during the ethoxylation step of its production. Some products containing SLES have been found to contain traces (up to 300 ppm) of this substance which has been classified as carcinogenic. The worry is that there is currently no regulation for the removal of 1,4-dioxane from contaminated products.

Another concern with SLS is that it is an ingredient in aqueous cream products which, as anyone who suffers from eczema knows, is the go to treatment dispensed by health professionals. In a report by the MHRA UK in 2013, aqueous cream products have been found to contain SLS and other ingredients which are likely to irritate damaged skin. Despite documented skin reactions, aqueous cream remains a popular product with eczema patients and patients with other chronic skin conditions.

How to avoid?

 

Many brands that claim to be ‘natural’, ‘organic’ or ‘eco friendly’ still contain SLS and SLES so read labels carefully. There should be no SLS, SLES, Lauryl sodium sulphate, Lauryl sulphate sodium salt, Sodium dodecyl sulphate or Sodium n-dodecyl sulphate in the ingredients list.

Choose products that are 100% natural, 100% plant-based to be sure that they are free from potentially harmful SLS and SLES.

All products sold by Pure Company is 100% SLS and SLES free because we believe that having beautiful skin and hair should not come with health risks but health benefits!

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Parabens

Parabens

Found in almost every skin care and beauty product we use, should we be concerned about this much talked about ingredient?

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What are Parabens?

Parabens have been used since the 1950s as a preservative in products like shampoos, moisturisers, deodorants and mascaras. It works by preventing the growth of any bacteria, fungus and other potentially damaging microbes within the product itself. They are also used in glues, oils, soft drinks, sauces, processed meat and hundreds of other everyday products.

The main parabens used as preservatives in cosmetics come in two forms: “short chain” (methyl-and ethyl paraben) and “long chain” (propyl- and butyl paraben). There is also some limited use of isobutyl- and isopropyl parabens, also known as “branched chain parabens”.

How do you know if the product has parabens? Look out for methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben and isobutylparaben in the list of ingredients in the products you are using.

Should we be worried about Parabens?

Although it has often been quoted that parabens were originally developed as an active ingredient in antifreeze, it may not necessarily mean they’re bad for you in individual cosmetic and skincare products. It just does not sound too good when you think we use over at least 20 different products a day that contain parabens on ourselves.

A few studies have suggested that “long-chain” parabens could interfere with the body’s hormones, particularly reproductive hormones, causing developmental disorders, fertility problems and cancer.

In 2004, a small British study from the University of Reading found traces of five parabens in the breast tissue of 19 out of 20 women studied. While the study didn’t prove that parabens can cause cancer, it did confirm parabens were able to enter the skin and remain within tissue.

While strict EU laws have limited a safe amount in all cosmetic products sold in the EU (usually less than 1%), health campaigners have warned that cumulative exposure to the chemicals from several different products could be overloading our bodies and contributing to a wide range of health problems.

It has also been advised that pregnant women and young children avoid products with parabens. In Denmark some forms of parabens have been banned (propyl and butyl paraben, their isoforms and their salts) in cosmetics products for children 3 and below.

How to avoid

Look for products labelled “paraben-free” and read ingredient lists on labels to avoid products with parabens. Many natural and organic cosmetics manufacturers have found effective alternatives to parabens to prevent microbial growth in personal care products. Some companies have created preservative-free products that have shorter shelf lives than conventional products (six months to a year).

Of course, you won’t have to worry about parabens in any of the products that are sold on Pure Company as they are all 100% paraben free.

Start shopping for paraben-free, 100% natural skin care and beauty products here.

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