Synthetics in their simplest form are man-made substances
that do not exist in nature. They can also be nature identical chemicals that
were synthesized in a lab or chemicals that are made using some molecules from
naturally derived raw materials in combination with man-made chemicals.
Given the scope synthetic ingredients encompass there's no wonder that manufacturers who are eager to appear ‘natural or organic’ can easily cloud the issue by using some
of these chemicals and feel justified calling them natural when they aren’t. You may wonder what the motivation is. The answer is simply. Profit.
Truly natural cosmetics are costly to make, the raw materials can be unpredictable
and at times difficult to work with. They
simply are not suited to mass manufacturing techniques. Synthetic additives have been designed to make products easier and cheaper to produce.
In contrast, a natural substance is one that is extracted
from a raw material found in nature without the use of a laboratory. Organic substances use raw materials found in
nature that were cultivated, raised and extracted without the use of man-made
chemicals. Organic certification is
reserved for substances that are farm raised (i.e. for human consumption) by
As a natural cosmetic chemist I am dumbfounded by just how
many natural skin care lines claiming to be synthetic free, actually produce
products containing a plethora of synthetics in every formula. Here are some examples I pulled from the ingredients of a popular brand who built a marketing campaign around the claim that they contain
absolutely no synthetic ingredients:
Glyceryl Stearate SE, Cetyl Alcohol, Cetearyl alcohol,
Glyceryl undecylenate, Glyceryl Caprylate, Cetearyl glucoside, Sodium
Decyl Glucoside, Sorbitan palmitate
These are all synthetics.
Another popular tactic companies use is simply omitting certain ingredients like emulsifiers (all lotions and creams require
an emulsifier), water (all lotions and creams require water) or preservatives
(all creams and lotions require a preservation system or they won’t last on the
shelf one week) from their labels to make them appear more natural and concentrated.
At Meadowlake Farm we produce what we claim to
produce. Skin care from raw materials
that are either natural, organic or wild crafted. Review our ingredients and compare. You’ll discover we are the rare and
wonderful real thing.