Natural beauty products have undergone something of a renaissance in the last couple of decades, as getting back to nature becomes ever more important. It’s important to remember though that this is simply a return to what was. This wikipedia entry shows exactly where natural products come from:
“Natural skin care has its roots in the 4th millennium BC in Egypt with natural skin care treatments for a variety of skin conditions. One such treatment consists of bullock’s bile, whipped ostrich eggs, olive oil, dough and resin mixed with milk. In the modern age many people with unique skin types and needs (sensitive skin, dry skin, oily skin) have turned to natural skin care solutions.
Some examples of natural skin care ingredients include jojoba, safflower oil, rose hip seed oil, shea butter, beeswax, witch hazel, aloe vera, tea tree oil, and chamomile. Many of these natural ingredient combinations can be tailored specifically to the individual’s skin type or skin condition.
There is, however, no actual definition of natural according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). All ingredients are chemicals by definition. “Derived” ingredients are unnatural both according to the original substance and the method of derivation.
The term natural has considerable market value in promoting skin care cosmetic products to consumers, but dermatologists say it has very little medical meaning and the FDA states the claim has no legal meaning. Despite pressure from advocacy groups such as The Environmental Working Group (EWG) the FDA has not defined what natural is or how to achieve it. Contrary to popular belief the FDA does not regulate the sale of skin care and cosmetic products before they are sold.
The FDA recommends understanding the ingredient label and says “There is no list of ingredients that can be guaranteed not to cause allergic reactions, so consumers who are prone to allergies should pay careful attention to what they use on their skin”, further warning that “[t]here is no basis in fact or scientific legitimacy to the notion that products containing natural ingredients are good for the skin”. Food preservatives are commonly used to preserve the safety and efficacy in these products.”
Excerpt from Wikipedia, full content can be found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_skin_care
So you can see that although we desire to have more natural beauty products in our repertoire, it’s not always as easy as just buying a “natural” beauty product off the shelf. Sometimes we have to do a bit more research to achieve the goals we’re looking for!