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Additives, toxins, fillers, oh my!

Through years of research, I realized that the message companies were trying to convey to me was this idea that their products were natural when their ingredient list told me another story. Adding the words “natural” or “naturally derived” meant nothing except a boardroom marketing ad campaign to pull the wool over my eyes.

Out of sheer frustration and because I never felt like I could trust what I read on labels regarding the safety of ingredients, I began to make my own products.

It wasn’t until 2009 that I felt led to start selling the products I was already making for my family. It was then that I committed to being a company where my message aligned with my ingredients. Always.

In my search to learn about additives I had to put on my research hat to find why most companies were using them. So, I went back to “school” and these are some of my findings.


By virtue of definition, cosmetic creams and lotions contain water which tends to be the ingredient listed first (which means it contains the most of that substance which is also the cheapest of ingredients).

Water promotes the growth of bacteria and mold, thus the need for adding a strong preservative; natural and not so natural. If water doesn’t mold, why does it promote mold? If you leave a grapefruit on the counter, it will mold in a week. If you dehydrate it it will last for a year or more. The same principal applies to water in skin care. To learn more about water in skin care, click here.

When water enters the skin, it expands the tissues, so wrinkles “fade away” and the skin looks and feels smoother, but this effect is just temporary, as soon as the water evaporates, dry less plump skin returns. A better use for water would be to drink it up; hydrate your body from the inside.

Our basic science classes in school taught us that you can’t mix oil and water. Well, you can but you will need an emulsifying wax which is a vegetable-base wax which is not just one chemical, but a cocktail of many. And these chemicals aren't required to be disclosed to the crafter or the end consumer.

But I tracked down the actual ingredients that make up veggie Emulsifying wax. It is typically a blend of the following: Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 60, PEG-150 Stearate, and Steareth-20.

Why does any of this matter?

When you remove all the fillers and other toxins (water, alcohols, perservatives, perfumes, emulsifying wax, petroleum ingredients, etc.) and replace them with healthy, active, beneficial ingredients your skin is able to go about the work of healing itself.

Think about what happens when we remove processed food from our diet and replace it with healthy fruits, veggies, quality proteins, nuts and seeds. We begin to feel better, sleep better, loose weight, our mood improves, etc. Basically our body is telling us that we are making better choices and it doesn't have to work as hard to clean out the yuck. Without all the distractions, your body is able to begin the work of healing itself of all that we put on it.

The same is true for skin. When more than 2/3 of a product contains these "junk food" for skin, your skin needs to take much of it's energy to cleaning that junk out and has little left for healing or repairing skin.


Cetearyl Alcohol

 Cetearyl Alcohol carries a low risk for skin irritation and tumor formation when used at high doses. Not terribly hazardous, but still a synthetically produced ingredient and if you are putting it on daily (even twice per day) a little really adds up.

Polysorbate 60

Polysorbate 60 is a possible reproductive toxin and could cause tumor formation at high doses. Again, not horrible but not natural either.

PEG-150 Stearate

PEG-150 Stearate (short for polyethylene glycol) is an ethoxylated compound, which means that it has been processed with ethylene oxide, a known human carcinogen. When processed with ethylene oxide, the product can contain traces of this compound, along with byproducts such as 1,4-dioxane, also a known carcinogen.


Steareth-20 is also an ethoxylated compound and can contain trace amounts of ethylene oxide and 1,4-dioxane. Stearyl alcohol (a naturally-ocurring fatty alcohol) is combined with ethylene oxide. The number at the end is how many units of ethylene oxide reacted with the stearyl alcohol. Steareth-20 has been reacted with 20 units of ethylene oxide. There are steareths ranging from 2 on up, Steareth-20 being the highest.



When reading labels on many creams, you will find mineral oils or petroleum based products (i.e. vaseline, baby oil). These type of oils clog pores and create a barrier, similar to a raincoat, on your skin so it cannot breathe or absorb vitamins and minerals.

Each of my babies were doused in Baby Magic lotion and Johnson & Johnson Baby Wash. I wish I knew then what I know now. Their ingredients list is alarming, honestly. Check out this USA Today's article...

I was stunned to realized that companies of laundry and cleaning products aren’t required to list ingredients on their packaging. In order to find out what was in them I needed to write to the companies to ask for the list. Most times they claimed their “proprietary ingredients” protected them from having their formulation copied (and from the consumer knowing whether these products were safe). Knowing that these products affect the skin like topical ones, I wondered who was protecting my family from these toxins. Wouldn’t you think a company would be thrilled to prove the health of a product if that was the case, especially today as more and more information is emerging about the dangers of products we have thought safe for decades?

Other “natural” additives are Borax. Borax can be used to thicken a product. I choose not to test borax as most of it’s recommended uses were as cleaning agents like laundry soap, dishwashing soap, etc. and can be irritating.

I tried Xantham gum and found that it only made the product slightly thicker but does not benefit the skin. Once on my skin it had to go somewhere; either absorbed or washed off at the end of the day. That can lead to dull skin.

Lanolin is a water repellent wax (known as wool fat) extracted from the wool of sheep. Lanolin's waterproofing properties aid sheep in shedding water from their coats. Remember, the breathability of skin is vital for it’s health.

Glycerin can be irritating and does not dissolve in oils plus there is debate over whether or not glycerin softens skin only by drawing moisture from the air rather than, itself being an agent of moisturizing properties. Unless a product specifically states that glycerin comes from coconut or vegetable sources, it may actually be a product of pig fat, and when combined with stearic acid, may actually be quite caustic or irritating to the skin.

Let me say that while many ingredients found in skin care products today contain toxic chemicals, not all of the ingredients listed above are horrible for the skin, just not the best. Most of these additives actually irritate the skin adding layer upon layer of unnecessary stuff which irritates and gives a dull look to skin.

Bloom Naturals uses ingredients of highest and purest quality with none of these “extras.” We are so excited to offer you safe, trusted, beautiful skin care that allows your skin to heal itself.

Remember this rule, only put on your skin what you would put in your mouth as your skin absorbs whatever you put on it. It is good to educate yourself on what you put in and on your body!

Try ours and watch as you get the skin you've always wanted!