Ingredients – Is Fragrance or Mineral Plant Extract Bad For Skin?


Many different fragrances, derived from various sources, are used in cosmetics. Some are natural, having been extracted from plants, such as essential oils. Turpenes extracted from trees are another variety. Some musks are derived from animal by-products and synthetic fragrances are developed.

There is no real advantage in using natural over synthetic fragrance, except perhaps in the actual odor.

Fragrance is the number one cause of cosmetic reactions. It does not matter if the fragrance is natural or synthetic. Frequent fragrance allergens include eugenol, hydroxycitronellal, cinnamic alcohol, geraniol and ylang-ylang. Fragrance can contain as many as 600 individual chemicals. Combining these chemicals with vehicles and delivery systems can increase the potential for skin penetration and, therefore, increase the potential for skin reaction. There are approximately 400 essential oils, which are also fragrances or groups of fragrances. Many essential oils have had very little formal scientific testing, and may present a major problem for sensitive skin.

Another interesting fact is that so-called natural cosmetics that contain a lot of botanical ingredients actually require more preservatives to be added due to the breakdown of the plant ingredients and the presence of fungi on the plant extracts. Many people think of natural ingredients as being less irritating, but they actually can be more irritating due to the presence of so many chemicals in each extract, and the need to use larger quantities of preservative to inhibit growth of unwanted organisms in the product.

Although essential oils are widely used in esthetics and certainly have their place in facial therapy, they are also capable of producing allergic reactions. Plant extracts of any type are made up of a variety of chemicals, from salicylic acid to water to glucose. They may also contain very small amounts of insecticide or other contaminants. Unfortunately, when we add a large number of plant extracts, we add many new chemicals. It is best to stay with known chemicals when dealing with ultra-sensitive skin.

Source : Skin Care Beyond The Basics

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