At Newf Brand, we strive to make our products as natural and simple as possible, leaving out everything which is unnecessary for each product to perform its desired effect. We want you, our customers, to be just as informed about what you're putting on your skin as we are. Hopefully the following information will allow you to better understand our blends and what each scent and ingredient contributes to the compound. If you want to know more information about a product or have other questions, please contact us.
Ingredient names below include the INCI names as well as common English names. The International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients, abbreviated INCI, is a system of names for waxes, oils, pigments, chemicals, and other ingredients of soaps, cosmetics, etc., based on scientific names and other Latin and English words.
Acer saccharinum (Sugar Maple) Extract
Sugar maple extract is a natural alpha hydroxy acid. It is often used to help the skin shed dead cells, moisturize skin, reduce dryness and combat flakiness. Long-term use of low concentration AHA's can increase collagen and elastin synthesis and boosts protein regeneration in the skin.
Activated charcoal is considered the most effective adsorbent material in the world today. It soaks up chemicals and toxins preventing them from being absorbed into your system and causing harm. It is used in Emergency Rooms after a person swallows or absorbs almost any toxic drug or chemical.
Activated charcoal is used in cosmetics to soak in all the hazards your skin encounters and lift them away from your body. You will often find it in cleansers, masks and gels.
Alcohol, also called ethanol or ethyl alcohol, is the same alcohol found in alcoholic beverages. When used in non- food products, beverages or oral drugs, many countries, including the United States, require that alcohol be "denatured." This means that a small amount of a denaturant is added to the alcohol to make it taste bad and a denaturant is simply something which will make the alcohol taste bad. Alcohol Denat. is the general name used for denatured alcohol.
Alcohol and Alcohol Denat. are used in cosmetics as antifoaming agents, cosmetic astringents, solvents and viscosity decreasing agents.
Aloe barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Juice
Aloe vera is expressed from the aloe vera plant which are found mainly in sunny climates. The leaves store large amounts of water. Aloe vera is considered by many to be one of the best natural moisturizers known to man. It has also proven to help wounds, burns and insect bites heal and prevent infection. Many other uses can be found which include protecting the skin from harmful UV rays, providing skin with a lovely, shiny, glowing look and treating athlete's foot. Aloe vera gel is also alleged to be useful for dry skin conditions, especially eczema around the eyes and sensitive facial skin.
Chemical analysis has shown the presence of mucopolysacharides, a natural moisturizing factor. Aloe vera is composed of water, the enzymes catalase and cellulose, minerals, calcium, aluminum, iron, zinc, magnesium, sodium, 20 amino acids and carbohydrates. Aloe vera also contains the "youth mineral" potassium.
In 1500 BC the Egyptian Ebers Papyrus recommended aloe for skin care. The Greeks, Chinese, Roman and Arab herbalist recommended aloe for burns and rashes. In the 1930s a radiologist discovered that aloe vera is effective in treating radiation burns.
True aloe vera is watery and thin. The products that you see on the marketplace that are thick have been chemically thickened and highly diluted.
Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA)
AHA’s can be used as water-binding agents in cosmetics, but are mostly used in modern cosmetics for their exfoliating properties and their therapeutic properties which help with and minimize photo damaged skin, which is a major contributing factor to ageing. Apart from ridding the skin of unnecessary dead cells, they also have a moisturizing effect on the skin, by increasing the moisture content of the upper skin and smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles, as well as reducing dryness and combating flakiness.
Antioxidants are actually contained in and produced by your body. But at times, the body cannot produce enough of them to fight off free radicals which come at the body every day. Free radicals are molecules with incomplete electron shells which make them more chemically reactive than those with complete electron shells and they release excess energy. They can come from the sun, X-rays, Gamma rays, cigarette smoke, alcohol and most frequently, oxygen. neutralize free radicals as the natural by-product of normal cell processes. When an oxygen molecule (O2) becomes electrically charged or "radicalized" it tries to steal electrons from other molecules, causing damage to the DNA and other molecules. Over time, such damage may become irreversible and lead to disease including cancer. Antioxidants are often described as "mopping up" free radicals, meaning they neutralize the electrical charge and prevent the free radical from taking electrons from other molecules. Source: National Cancer Institute
Antioxidants are abundant in fruits and vegetables, as well as in other foods including nuts, grains and some meats, poultry and fish. This list below from the National Cancer Institute describes food sources of common antioxidants.
- Beta-carotene is found in many foods that are orange in color, including sweet potatoes, carrots, cantaloupe, squash, apricots, pumpkin, and mangos. Some green leafy vegetables including collard greens, spinach, and kale are also rich in beta-carotene.
- Lutein, best known for its association with healthy eyes, is abundant in green, leafy vegetables such as collard greens, spinach, and kale.
- Lycopene is a potent antioxidant found in tomatoes, watermelon, guava, papaya, apricots, pink grapefruit, blood oranges, and other foods. Estimates suggest 85 percent of American dietary intake of lycopene comes from tomatoes and tomato products.
- Selenium is a mineral, not an antioxidant nutrient. However, it is a component of antioxidant enzymes. Plant foods like rice and wheat are the major dietary sources of selenium in most countries. The amount of selenium in soil, which varies by region, determines the amount of selenium in the foods grown in that soil. Animals that eat grains or plants grown in selenium-rich soil have higher levels of selenium in their muscle. In the United States, tuna, beef, cod, turkey, chicken, pasta and bread are common sources of dietary selenium. Brazil nuts also contain large quantities of selenium. The Office of Dietary Supplements recommends a daily intake of 55 μg for men and women over 19, unless they are pregnant (60 μg) or lactating (70 μg).
- Vitamin A is found in three main forms: retinol (Vitamin A1), 3,4-didehydroretinol (Vitamin A2), and 3-hydroxy-retinol (Vitamin A3). Foods rich in vitamin A include liver, carrots, spinach, kale, cantelope, apricots, papaya, peas, tomato juice, milk and other foods. The Office of Dietary Supplements recommends a daily intake of 900 mcg of RAE (3,000 IU) for men over 19 and 700 mcg of RAE (2,310 IU) women over 19 unless they are pregnant (770 mcg of RAE (2.565 IU)) or lactating (1,300 mcg of RAE (4,300 IU)).
- Vitamin C is also called ascorbic acid, and can be found in high abundance in many fruits and vegetables and is also found in cereals, beef, poultry and fish.
- Vitamin E, also known as alpha-tocopherol, is found in almonds, in many oils including wheat germ, sunflower, safflower, corn and soybean oils, and also found in almonds, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, peanuts, spinach, broccoli, kiwis, mangos and other foods. The Office of Dietary Supplements recommends a daily intake of 15 mg (22.5 IU) for men and women.
It is recommended that you consume 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day and maintain a regular exercise routine. These two items will help ensure that you body continues to produce its own antioxidents at healthy levels.
Purified water is used in making many cosmetic products. It is often used in creams to achieve a good consistency, hydrate skin and help ingredients penetrate the skin.
Benzyl Alcohol is used in cosmetics and personal care products as an external pain reliever, fragrance ingredient, preservative, solvent and to decrease the thickness of liquid cosmetic products. Benzyl Alcohol is found naturally in many foods such as apricots, snap beans, cocoa, cranberries, mushrooms and honey and also in the essential oil of many plants, including jasmine, hyacinth and ylang-ylang.
The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel concluded that Benzyl Alcohol is safe for use in cosmetics and personal care products at concentrations up to 5%. The available data were insufficient to support the safety of these ingredients in cosmetics and personal care products in which a primary route of exposure is inhalation. The CIR Expert Panel also concluded that Benzyl Alcohol was safe for use in hair dyes at concentrations up to 10%.
Benzyl benzoate is generally used to treat lice and scabies infestations. As a medicine, it is believed to be absorbed by the lice and mites and destroys them by acting on their nervous system.
Biological products are made from living material--human, plant, animal, or microorganism-- for the treatment, prevention or cure of disease in humans.
Bisamino PEG/PPG-41/3 Aminoethyl PG-Propyl Dimethicone
A silicone compound used to condition hair without build up. It is commonly used in products which treat color, perm, sun and heat-damaged hair.
Brassica Campestris / Aleurites Fordi Oil Copolymer
A wax blend made of rapeseed oil and Chinese Wood or tung oi. It has strong water-resistant properties and forms a film on the skin to keep moisture within. It also can be used to make emulsions waterproof.
Calcium d-Pantothenate (Pro-Vitamin B5)
This naturally derived ingredient is widely used in hair care products and emollients for many reasons. It has a moisturing effect, improving and increasing the moisture-retention capacity of the skin while keeping dry skin supple and elastic longer. It is an anti-inflammatory, has an anti-itching effect, stimulates skin regeneration and helps small wounds, scratches and blister heal better. Pro-Vitamin B5 is also very good for your hair. It makes it easier to comb, reduces hair splitting, improves the condition of damaged hair, thickens the hair and also provides sheen. Panthenol also greatly increases the water retention capacity of the fingernails, thus increasing their flexibility and stability.
No known toxicity and non-sensitizing.
Carbomer is a synthetic compound comprised of a cross-linked polymer of acrylic acid with a high molecular weight. Carbomers are essentially thickening agents. They act as emulsion stabilizers and can be used to adjust viscosity. Although they can be used in any type of cosmetic product, it is very often found in gel-like formulas. There are currently no known side effects to this chemical compound.
Castor Seed Oil (Ricinus Communis)
Castor seed oil, a also known as Palm Christi Oil, is a vegetable oil obtained from the seeds of the Ricinus Communis plant. The seeds contain between 20% and 90% oil that is rich in triglycerides, mainly ricinolein. They also contain ricin, a poison, which is also present in lower concentrations throughout the plant. The seeds are poisonous but the toxicity of them is not known.
Castor oil and other ingredients made from castor oil are used to formulate many different cosmetic products, from lipstick and skin-care products to bath soap. It is used commercially in about 50% of lipsticks in the United States. Castor oil is used because of its ability to create a protective barrier on the skin and its soothing properties.There are no known risks to using castor seed oil or its derivatives in cosmetics.
Other ingredients derived from castor oil include Cetyl Rinoleate, Ethyl Ricinoleate, Glyceryl Ricinoleate, Glyceryl Ricinoleate SE (SE stands for self-emulsifying, which means it contains a small amount of sodium or potassium stearate), Glycol Ricinoleate, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Isopropyl Ricinoleate, Methyl Ricinoleate, Octyldodecyl Ricinoleate, Potassium Ricinoleate, Ricinoleic Acid, Sodium Ricinoleate and Zinc Ricinoleate.
Cetearyl alcohol is derived naturally from fatty acids in coconut oil. It is an emulsifying wax which gives hair and skin a soft, velvety feeling. It forms an occlusive (impenetrable) film which keep moisture from evaporating off the skin. Cetearyl alcohol is also used as a thickening agent and to help combine materials which may not otherwise blend well together. Not an "alcohol" such as ethyl or rubbing alcohol.
A chelating agent is a substance whose molecules can form several bonds to a single metal ion which allows this ingredient to neutralizestrace minerals on hair and reduce build up.
Citric acid and its Calcium, Potassium and Sodium salts are widely used in cosmetics and personal care products to preserve products by chelating (complexing) with metals, and to adjust the acid/base balance. It is a white, crystalline powde that can be extracted from citrus fruits or made from fermented sugar solutions. Lemon juice contains 5 to 8% citric acid.
Citric acid is said to have antioxidant and toning properties and is one of the alpha-hydroxy acids. AHA's are used not only to reduce wrinkles but also to brighten your skin. The "new" alpha hydroxy acid skin treatments are simply made up of lactic acid (milk), citric acid (citrus), glycolic (sugar cane), malic (apples), and tartaric (grapes) acids. Citric acid is considered a biological product. Citric Acid may also be used to impart a lemon-like fragrance to cosmetics and personal care products. Lemon juice contains 5 to 8% citric acid.
Cocamide MEA (cocamide monoethanolamine)
A pale yellow viscous clear to amber liquid, or solid flakes. It can be made from fatty acids in coconut oils, reacted with ethanolamine. Cocamide MEA is used in shampoos and bath products to increase foaming capacity, stabilize foam and thicken the water portion of cosmetic and personal care products. It may be a skin irritant but is not considered harmful.
Cocamidopropyl betaine is a semisynthetic compound derived from coconut oil obtained from the kernels of palm trees. It is used as a medium strength surfactant in bath products like shampoos and hand soaps and in cosmetics as an emulsifying agent and thickener. It also serves as an antistatic agent in hair conditioners and has antiseptic properties, making it suitable for personal sanitary products. Cocamidopropyl betaine is a derivate of cocamide and glycine betaine.
It usually does not irritate skin or mucous membranes but some may experience allergic reactions after use. Decyl Glucose is often used in its place for products targeted at more sensitive skin but allergic reactions to it have also been experienced.
Coconut Oil (Cocos nucifera)
Coconut oil is expressed from coconut kernels. This highly saturated fat contains twice the heavy fats as lard. Coconut oil is commonly used to promote lather in soaps and gel. Wonderfully emollient and has cooling properties.
Coffea Arabica (Coffee)
Many skin care products with coffee bases have recently been introduced to the market. Coffee extract is often used in slimming cosmetics due to the natural caffeine content of coffee beans. it is also a powerful antioxidant. The high content of unsaponifiable matter in coffee oil has made it popular in cosmetics too. It has become a popular ingredient in sunscreens because of its abilty to natural protect against ultraviolet light. Coffee oil is rich in phytosterols which promote excellent moisture retention, quick penetration and good adherence in cosmetics.
Essential Oils for Frangrance
There's actually so much to know about all the various essential oils that we gave it its own page. Visit it here to learn more.
DMDM Hydantoin is a formaldehyde-donor preservative that prevents or retards microbial growth, thereby protecting cosmetics and personal care products from spoilage. It is a broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent, effective against fungi, yeast, and bacteria. It's considered safe for us in cosmetics by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel.
A mixture of two unblendable substances, in which one substance is dispersed into the other substance. Homemade oil and vinegar salad dressing is an example of an unstable emulsion that will quickly separate unless shaken continuously. Emulsifying agents are often used to help form the emulsion and stabilizing agents are used to keep the resulting emulsion from separating.
Evening Primrose Oil (Oenothers biennis)
Evening primrose is high in gamma-linolenic acid (an essential fatty acid) making it an exceptionally nourishing oil. The human body does not produce essential fatty acids such as linoleic and linolenic acids therefore it is important to get these nutrients through diet and skin care products. Essential fatty acids inhibit bacterial growth and allow our systems to defend against infection and inflammation. This oil is highly recommended for dry skin problems.
Ingredients that are applied to the skin to relieve pain. In the United States, external analgesics are regulated as Over-The-Counter (OTC) drug ingredients.
Glycerin, Kosher Vegetable
Vegetable glycerin is obtained by adding alkalies to fats and fixed oils. Glycerin is a soothing, humectant which draws moisture from the air to the skin. Glycerin is an emollient, which makes the skin feel softer and smoother and reduces irritation and rough, cracked skin.
Glycerin has a high hydrophilic (water) factor and a low lipophilic (fat) factor. It is nontoxic, nonirritating and nonallergenic. Glycerin is also a very sweet syrup, about 0.6 as sweet as sugar.
An emulsion stabilizer which helps to keep an emulsion from separating into its oil and liquid components. It's considered safe for use in cosmetics by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel.
Grapeseed Oil (Vitis vinifera)
Grapeseed oil is made from the seeds of wine producing grapes. It is the lightest of oils and virtually odorless. It contains vitamins, minerals and is high in polyunsaturates and protein.
Grapeseed oil is wonderful used around the eyes and neck. It’s widely used in hypoallergenic, natural products because it does not often cause reactions in the highly allergic.
Green Tea Extract
Green tea is a "true" tea, meaning it is made solely with the leaves of Camellia sinensis, that has undergone minimal oxidation during processing. Green tea originates from China and has become associated with many cultures in Asia from Japan to the Middle East. Recently, it has become more widespread in the West, where black tea is traditionally consumed.
Over the last few decades, green tea has begun to be subjected to many scientific and medical studies to determine the extent of its long purported health benefits, with some evidence suggesting regular green tea drinkers may have lower chances of heart disease and of contracting certain types of cancer.
Green tea is used in many skin care products because it is believed to have powerful anti-aging properites. The 1994 report "Green tea and skin-anticarcinogenic effects" (published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology) found that green tea, whether consumed or used topically, was effective at protecting against skin cancer. The same report also indicates that green tea may block ultraviolet rays, therefore giving it the potential to prevent other dangerous forms of cancer caused by the sun.
Most researchers agree that tea (black, green, or white) has potent anti-inflammatory properties and that it is a potent antioxidant.
Hamamelis virginiana (Witch Hazel) Distillate
Witch hazel is mainly used externally on sores, bruises and swelling to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. It is also traditionally known as a good first reaction against shaving cuts and abrasions to stop any bleeding and is recommended in the Doctors Book of Home Remedies as effective for helping sunburns.
Witch hazel is an astringent produced from the leaves and bark of the North American "witch hazel"shrub (Hamamelis virginiana) which ranges from Nova Scotia west to Ontario, and south to Texas, and Florida. The native plant was widely used for medicinal purposes by American Indians. The "extract" is obtained by steaming the twigs of the shrub.
The name Witch has its origins in Middle English wiche, from the Old English wice, meaning "pliant" or "bendable". Hazel is derived from the use of the twigs as divining rods, just as hazel twigs were used in England.
Hemp or Hemp Seed Oil (Cannabis sativa)
Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the Cannabis sativa plant. To most people Cannabis sativa is synonymous with marijuana; the Latin name translates to "useful hemp." Hemp seed oil contains no tetrahydrocannabinol. Natural hemp seed oil is dark green and has a nutty rich scent.
Hemp contains proteins and high quality fat and has a remarkable fatty acid profile. It is high in omega-3 and a 1.7% gamma-linolenic acid. It is 57% linoleic and 19% linoleic acid (an unsaturated omega-6 fatty acid).
Hemp is a wonderful oil for dry or mature skin since it is said to help stimulate cell growth. Hemp seed oil is an emollient. According to the AMA's committee on Coetaneous Health, emollients help make the skin feel softer and smoother, reduce roughness, cracking and irritation, and may also retard the fine wrinkles of aging. Hemp seed has a lot of minerals and is good for the skin and hair.
Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein
Hydrolyzed wheat protein (also known as phyto peptides) is an extremely pure protein produced from natural wheat gluten through hydrolysis. It consists of the two subunits gliadin and glutenin, which are capable of repairing damaged hair through covalent linkage. Wheat protein conditions hair with its moisture retention and film forming properties, which greatly improve the body, shine, and smoothness of hair. Sulfhydryl groups in wheat proteins improve the quality and functionality of skin and hair care products. Plant proteins have excellent skin compatibility and deposit a protective film on the skin and hair. The film is smoothing and moisturizing.
Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate prevents or retards bacterial growth, thereby protecting cosmetics and personal-care products from spoilage. The Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel views Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate safe as a cosmetic ingredient at concentrations less than or equal to 0.1%. It should not be used in products intended to be aerosolized.
Iron oxides are classified as certified purified inorganic colorants. Which means that they are produced in keeping with the highest standards for purity and have been tested and guaranteed to conform with the specifications set forth for use in drug and cosmetic applications. Iron oxides include Yellow Oxide, Red Oxide and Black Oxide.
Jojoba (pronounced "ho-HO-bah") oil is the liquid wax cold pressed from the seed of the jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis) plant. The jojoba plant is a shrub native to southern California, southern Arizona, northerwestern Mexico and Israel. Jojoba oil makes up approximately 50% of the jojoba seed by weight.
Native Americans have been using jojoba for centuries. The first record of jojoba is from 1701. Father Junipero Serra (1713-1784, a missionary in California) found that Native Americans were using Jojoba to treat sores, cuts, burns, as a conditioner and for all over skin and hair treatments.
Jojoba is technically not an oil, but a liquid wax ester with a long unsaturated carbon chain. Chemically it resembles sperm whale oil or spermaceti oil. In the 1970's the United States banned all sperm whale products because they were contributing to the extinction of sperm whales, thus triggering the start of domestic commercial jojoba oil cultivation in 1977 as an alternative to synthetic products.
Jojoba esters also resemble human sebum; the natural coating our body produces to protect the skin and keep it supple. Our skin loses sebum with age and exposure to sun, wind, cold, and the environment but jojoba acts as a natural skin therapy. It contains protein, minerals and a waxy substance that mimics collagen. Jojoba is perfect for any skin type and can help dry or oily skin. If your skin has an over production of sebum, jojoba oil will dissolve clogged pores and restore the skin to its natural pH balance. Jojoba oil actually penetrates the skin because it is accepted as sebum which is why it works so well and is used in so many cosmetics products.
Lemon Extract (Citrus medica limonum)
Lemon extract is derived from lemons, as the name suggests. It is often used in cosmetics for its skin tightening and toning properties, as well as its fresh, invigorating fragrance. An antibiotic, sedative and astringent.
Limnanthes alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil
When added to cosmetics and creams, meadowfoam seed oil re-moisturizes the skin in ways no other oil can. In shampoos and soaps, it helps add shine and moisture to your hair and scalp which can be dried out and made brittle by the harsh process of daily washing. In lipsticks and balms, this oil helps revitalize dry, cracked lips and keep them stay moist longer.
Meadowfoam seeds (nutlets) contain 20 to 30 percent oil. The oil from meadowfoam seed has unique chemical properties that make it one of the most stable vegetable oils known. The oil extracted from meadowfoam seeds is recognized for its outstanding oxidative stability and contains over 98 percent long-chain fatty acids. It has higher quality triglyceride levels compared to other vegetable oils. Meadowfoam oil contains three previously unknown long-chain fatty acids. The oil is most similar to high euric acid rapeseed oil.
Liquid Silk Protein
Liquid silk protein is also known as silk amino acids and sericin. Silk amino acids are obtained by the hydrolysis of silk - a natural protein fiber. The principal amino acids contained within are glycine, alanine, and serine. Their low molecular weight indicates that the molecules can penetrate the cuticle in undamaged hair as well as the surface layer of the epidermis.
Silk amino acids are often added to cosmetics products to leave the skin with a soft, velvety feeling. Silk proteins also have a moisturizing effect because of their excellent water-binding properties and provide some antioxident properties.
Mentha piperita (Peppermint) Extract
Peppermint extract is made by extracting the oils from dead or fresh peppermint leaves and the flowering tops of the plant using alcohol. Peppermint is a cross between watermint and spearmint, a native plant of Europe. Historically, the herb has been known for its medicinal uses and is considered one of the world’s oldest medicines.
Peppermint extract can be used to relieve pain and its cooling properties also help relieve itching. Peppermint extrac can nourish dull skin and improves the balance of oily skin. Peppermint extract used in hair care provides a cooling effect on the scalp and can help remove dandruff and lice.
Micas are a group of minerals that are similar in their physical properties and chemical compositions. They are all silicate minerals meaning they all contain silica. Micas may be a range of colors such as black or brown, or have no color at all.
Some brands of toothpaste include powdered white mica. This acts as a mild abrasive to aid polishing of the tooth surface, and also adds a cosmetically-pleasing glittery shimmer to the paste. Hair products may use micas to give the shampoo a shimmering appearance or to give the product specific colors.
MSM, Methylsulfonylmethane, is a naturally occurring nutrient found in plants, meats, dairy products, fruits, and vegetables. MSM is therefore found in the normal human diet. It is an odorless, tasteless, white water soluble, crystalline solid in its purified form.
MSM supplies sulfur to the body which allows it to heal itself. It produces muscle relaxation and reportedly a whole host of beneficial qualities. It has been used with great success in eliminating chronic back pain and muscle pain, and in repairing cut, scraped, burned and damaged skin. Reports indicate MSM has the ability to eliminate wrinkles, brown spots, skin tumors, and spider veins. MSM is being used for burn victims and to repair scar tissue. Many people report relief from allergies after using MSM. Other reports indicate that MSM will remove parasites from the body, and help the body to detoxify itself.
MSM is anti-inflamatory and anti-microbial. MSM feeds the formation of collagen and elastin while preventing and reducing cross-linking between cells, which is the primary cause of wrinkles and scar tissue. MSM is a natural sulfur compound that contributes to healthy skin, hair and nails. MSM has been used orally and topically to aid skin disorders. When used topically, in the form of a cream or lotion, sulfur is helpful in treating skin disorders including acne, psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis, dandruff, scabies, diaper rash and certain fungal infections.
Neem (Azadriachta indica)
Neem is used widely in India as an antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, antiseptic and antiparasitic agent in toiletries, soap, toothpaste and skin/hair care products. It is used to treat skin disorders such as eczema, psoriasis, ringworm, scabies, syphilitic sores, chicken pox etc.
It can be used to get rid of lice and control dandruff. In toothpaste it helps relieve swollen and bleeding gums and kills the bacteria that cause gingivitis. Neem in a foot bath powder kills fungus and bacteria. Those with acne and other skin problems can benefit from a neem clay facial mask. Used as a bug, flea and tick repellant for both humans and pets. It can also be used to treat hot spots on pets. Neem oil can be sprayed on plants to keep insects from devouring the leaves.
Olive oil (Olea europaea)
Olive oil is obtained by crushing and pressing the fruit of the olive tree. The olive tree is an evergreen tree native to the Mediterranean area, but can be grown in other tropical and warm areas.
An important historic oil used extensively in ancient times, olive oil is highly nutritive and stable. It contains protein, minerals and vitamins and has superior penetrating power. It is a yellow or greenish in color and has acidic and antioxidant values. Olive oil is high in unsaponifiables, which is a large group of compounds called plant steroids or sterolins. They soften the skin, have superior moisturizing effect on the upper layer of the skin and reduce scars. Oils with the highest unsaponifiables are shea butter, avocado oil, sesame oil, soybean oil and olive oil.
Orange Fruit Extract (Citrus auranium dulcis)
Orange fruit extract is an extract from the fruit of the sweet orange (Citrus aurantium dulcis - also known as Citrus sinensis). It a biological product used for its skin-conditioning properties as well as its fragrance. The extract compound also contains alpha hydroxy acids which moisturize and exfoliate skin.
Palm Stearic Acid
Palm stearic acid comes from the palm tree and is a vegetable based emulsifying fatty acid. It may also be obtained from animal fats.
Stearic acid in either form is often used to stiffen and stabilize lotions and creams. It also used to make candles and soaps.
PEG-12 Dimethicone was previously referred to as Dimethicone Copolyol. It's a a silicone derivative which is water soluble and it is added to shampoos to add luster and sheen to hair.
PEG-6, PEG-8, PEG-32, PEG-75, PEG-150, PEG-14M and PEG-20M are a polymers of ethylene glycol. PEG is an abbreviation for polyethylene glycol. The number in the name is the average number of units, or monomers, of ethylene glycol and the letter "M" associated with the number stands for 1000, so PEG-14M has an average of 14,000 units of ethylene glycol.
PEG-6, PEG-8, PEG-32, PEG-75, PEG-150, PEG-14M and PEG-20M are used in a wide variety of products including bath products, shaving products, skin care products, makeup, skin cleansing products, shampoo, hair conditioners and deodorants. They are considered safe for us in cosmetics by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel.
PEG-14M is used as a binder, emulsion stabilizer and viscosity increasing agent (increases thickness).
Phenoxyethanol is an organic chemical compound, a glycol ether often used in dermatological products such as skin creams. It is a colorless oily liquid and is used as a preservative.
Polysorbate 60 is a sorbitan monostearate that has been ethoxy-lated with approximately 20 moles of ethylene oxide to give a water soluble, oil and water emulsifier. This product is one of a group of ethoxylated sorbitan fatty acid esters, which are often referred to as Polysorbates. This surfactant is a mixture of partial esters of sorbitol and its anhydrides made from fatty acids, primarily stearic, which is then reacted with ethylene oxide to make it hydrophilic in nature.
It can be used as a solubilizer and emulsifier of oils and fragrances, wetting agent, viscosity modifier, anti-stat, stabilizer or dispersing agent. Typical applications are found in cosmetics, toiletries and ointments.
Red Raspberry Oil (Rudus idaeus)
Red Raspberry seed oil is another new addition to the list of available essential fatty acid containing oils. It contains 83% essential fatty acids.
Raspberry seed oil is emollient, lubricating, conditioning and a lipid barrier providing protection and moisture retention for the skin. This oil has UV absorptive properties in all three ranges beneficial for photoprotection. It contains high concentrations of mixed tocopherols, tocotrienols and carotenoids. The oil reveals mild raspberry flavor and aroma.
Rooibos Extract (Aspalathus linearis)
Rooibos, an African slang word of Dutch origin meaning “ Red Bush”, is cultivated and processed in the Clanwilliam area of the Western Cape, South Africa. Rooibos has become increasingly popular over the past decade due to its alleged health properties. Indigenous and colonial settlers in South Africa drank it to treat nervousness, indigestion, allergies and minor skin problems. Overall it has a beneficial effect on human health. It is primarily used to prevent the body from attacking itself and to defend the body against external toxins.
Rooibos Extract has anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and Free Radical Scavenging properties, based partly on its unique flavonoid composition including Aspalathin. Rooibos shows anti-allergenic and anti-microbial effects and protects the skin against oxidative stress (anti-aging effect). It is also known to prevent eczema, teeth and mouth mucous membrane inflammations, relieve diaper rash, and reduce swelling and inflammation in muscles and joints. These health properties are ascribed to the high level of antioxidants, minerals and polyphenols such as selenium, vitamin A, C, E and magnesium found in rooibos. Polyphenols act as pigments and sunscreens, as insect attractants and repellents, and as anti-microbials and antioxidants. Laboratory studies have found that rooibos tea contains polyphenol antioxidants, including flavonoids and phenolic acids that are potent free radical scavengers. Flavonoids - The polyphenol antioxidants identified in rooibos include the monomeric flavonoids aspalathin, nothofagin, quercetin, rutin, isoquercitrin, orientin, isoorientin, luteolin, vitexin, isovitexin, and chrysoeriol.
Rose Distillate (Rosa damascena)
Rose distillate (also know as rose water or rose hydrosol) is the byproduct of producing rose essential oil. It has skin softening, toning, soothing and healing properties, and is especially beneficial for sensitive skin. It was used during Victorian times to soothe skin.
Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary Oleoresin) Extract
Before refrigeration was available people wrapped their meat in rosemary leaves to preserve it. Meats spoil partly because oxidation turns the fats rancid and rosemary retards spoilage. Its preservative value has made it a mainstay in herbal medicine. It is made of oil soluble antioxidant compounds derived from the herb rosemary. As a natural preservative, it prevents rancidity in which vegetable/plant oils have been made.
Saccharum officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract
Sugar cane extract is rumored to be an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) which have an exfoliating and moisturizing effect on skin. Glycolic acid may be derived from sugar cane but in limited quantities.
Salix Nigra (Black Willowbark Extract)
The Black Willow (Salix nigra) tree, found in the eastern part of the North American continent, is famous for its dark brown, ridged bark. The fresh bark is rich in tannins and salicylic acid-like materials. The freshly prepared extract has been reported to have analgesic, antiseptic, astringent, anti-pyretic and anti-inflammatory properties. Natural Black Willowbark Extract has been shown to possess potent antimicrobial properties.
Efficacy testing has shown that the extract has activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Propionibacterium acnes, two of the skin flora implicated in the formation of acne. When added to cosmetic formulations, the extract can also increase the cell renewal capabilities of cosmetic formulations. Natural Black Willowbark Extract is a safe way to get the benefits of a B-hydroxy acid without the risk of irritation. When compared to Salicylic Acid the extract is better able to increase turnover of the stratum corneum and also has more in vitro antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Propionibacterium acnes. Coupled with this increased efficacy, it has less irritation potential than salicylic acid comparable to glycerin.
Sodium Chloride, or table salt, polishes the teeth, reduces oral odor, or otherwise cleanses or deodorizes the teeth and mouth. Sodium Chloride also imparts a flavor or a taste to a product. It can also increase the thickness of the aqueous (water) portion of cosmetics and personal care products. Sodium Chloride occurs naturally in seawater and as the mineral halite. Sodium Chloride is essential to biological organisms and is found in most tissues and body fluids. The sodium and chlorine elements of Sodium Chloride play a diverse and important role in many physiological processes, including the transport of nutrients and waste, nervous system functions, and water and electrolyte balance.
The word surfactant results from the blending of the words "surface acting agent." Surfactants are often organic compounds and are soluble in both organic solvents and water. When dissolved in water, a surfactant allows a product to remove dirt from surfaces such as the human skin, textiles, and other solids. Surfactants can be may come from natural sources such as palm oil or tallow or from synthetics like petroleum.
Tetrasodium EDTA (Sodium EDTA)
Tetrasodium EDTA is an antioxidant and chelating agent. EDTA, also known as edetic acid, is often used in soaps and detergents because it binds to calcium, magnesium and iron ions found in hard water, eliminating their potential to interfere with the cleaning ability of soaps and detergents and therefore allowing for better foaming and cleaning performance of cosmetics and personal care products. By binding with metal ions, these ingredients prevent the metals from being deposited onto the hair, scalp and skin. It may also be added to cosmetics to improve the product's stability and acts as a preservative. It's considered safe for us in cosmetics by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel.
Tin oxide is a naturally occuring oxide from tin which is often used in cosmetics to give them a silvery, shimmering quality.
Women in Roman Britain are believed to have used foundation made from animal fat, starch and tin oxide to give their skin a pale and appealing look. Source: BBC News
Titanium Dioxide (Kosher)
Titanium dioxide, also known as titanium(IV) oxide or titania, is the naturally occurring oxide of titanium. In almost every sunscreen with a physical blocker, titanium dioxide is found because of its high refractive index, its strong UV light absorbing capabilities and its resistance to discolouration under ultraviolet light. This advantage enhances its stability and ability to protect the skin from ultraviolet light. Sunscreens designed for infants or people with sensitive skin are often based on titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide, as these mineral UV blockers are less likely to cause skin irritation than chemical UV absorber ingredients, such as avobenzone. It is also used as a thickener in cosmetics.
Triethanolamine (Triolamine, Trolamine, TEA)
Triethanolamine is used as a pH balancer in cosmetic preparations in a variety of different products - ranging from skin lotion, eye gels, moisturizers, shampoos, shaving foams etc. It is also used to thicken the product to a stable viscosity.
As with any amines, it may have the potential to create nitrosamines, but with the low concentrations used in cosmetic products the chances of that happening is very slim and it is further theorized that nitrosamines cannot penetrate the skin. Triethanolamine is not classified as carcinogenic to humans but some individuals may develop contact dermatitis to it, if used in too high concentrations.
Triticum vulgare (Wheat Germ) Oil
Wheat germ oil is from the golden germ of wheat. It is extremely high in vitamin A, B1, D, lecithin, protein, a high content of unsaturated fatty acid compounds and a very high vitamin E content at 250 IU per ounce. Wheat germ oil has a heavy wheat nut scent.
According to the AMA's committee on coetaneous health, emollients do help make the skin feel softer and smoother, reduce roughness, cracking and irritation. They also may retard the fine wrinkles of aging.
Vaccinium macrocarpon (Cranberry) Extract
A cranberry is a relatively small, red berry which grows on low-hanging vines in temperate zones in many regions of the United States and other parts of the world. Cranberries are members of the same family of plants as bilberry and blueberry. Cranberry can be taken as a juice, the whole berry, or from an extract.
The active ingredients in cranberry include chemical compounds called proanthocyanidins which are potent antioxidants. Proanthocyanidins inhibit the body’s enzymes that break down collagen. They help collagen repair and rebuild correctly which can reverse damage done over the years by injury and free radical attacks. The breakdown of collagen is what causes our skin to lose its elasticity which in turn causes wrinkles. Proanthocyanidins help keep skin elastic, smooth and wrinkle-free.
Vaccinium macrocarpon (Cranberry) Seed Oil
Cranberry seed oil is an essential fatty acid oil recently introduced into the supplement industry. It is the only available oil with a one to one ratio of Omega 6 (linoleic) to Omega 3 (alpha-linolenic) fatty acids. Cranberry seed oil has oxidative stability and contains 70% essential fatty acids making it a superb emollient, lubricant and conditioner for the skin. It is excellent for use in skin, hair, lip and baby care. Cranberry seed oil contributes to the lipid barrier protection of the skin and assists in moisture retention.
The oil also contains high concentrations of tocopherols, tocotrienols, phytosterols, phospholipids and Vitamin A, redefining performance and stability standards for highly polyunsatruated oils.
Distilled water has virtually all of its impurities removed through distillation. Distillation involves boiling the water and then condensing the steam into a clean container, leaving nearly all of the solid contaminants behind. It is often used in cosmetics products due to its lack of potential for causing undesired chemical reactions due to impurities.
Vaccinium myrtillus (Bilberry) Extract
The use of bilberry as an herbal remedy stems back almost one thousand years to Europe, where it was mainly used orally to relieve diarrhea. Bilberry is a relative of the cranberry, blueberry, and huckleberry. Its fruit looks and tastes similar to the American blueberry.
Bilberry fruit contains high concentrations of tannins, substances that act as both an astringent and an anti-inflammatory. This fruit also contains flavonoid compounds called anthocyanidins. Flavonoids are plant pigments that possess outstanding antioxidant properties, foraging out dangerous particles in the body known as free radicals. Bilberry has been connected with the prevention of cancer, heart disease, and macular degeneration.
Also known as tocopherol, Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin in eight forms which is often used in skin creams and lotions because it is believed to play a role in encouraging skin healing and is a wonderful antioxident. Although originally extracted from wheat germ oil, most natural vitamin E supplements are now derived from vegetable oils, usually soybean oil.
In foods, the most abundant sources of vitamin E are vegetable oils such as palm oil, sunflower, corn, soybean, and olive oil. Nuts, sunflower seeds, seabuckthorn berries, kiwi fruit, and wheat germ are also good sources. Other sources of vitamin E are whole grains, fish, peanut butter, and green leafy vegetables. Fortified breakfast cereals are also an important source of vitamin E in the United States. Although originally extracted from wheat germ oil, most natural vitamin E supplements are now derived from vegetable oils, usually soybean oil.
Xanthan Gum (Polysaccharide Gum)
Xanthan gum is a polysaccharide often used as a food additive. It is produced by a process involving fermentation of glucose or sucrose by the Xanthomonas campestris bacterium. In cosmetics xanthan gum is used to prepare water gels usually in conjunction with bentonite clays. Is also used in oil-in-water emulsions to help stabilise the oil droplets against coalesence (fusion of originally separate parts.) It has some skin hydrating properties.
Sources: Wikipedia, CHEC's HeatheHouse Chemical Profiles, CosmeticsInfo.org