Plant-based skincare is comprised of natural ingredients such as extracts, oils and butters. These ingredients are often sourced in a sustainable way and free from harsh chemicals, dyes and synthetic additives.
For example, Koestline points out that bakuchiol is a plant-derived retinol alternative that can help smooth wrinkles and control acne without the side effects associated with traditional retinols. Other plant-derived actives, such as lavender, are also effective for their soothing and anti-inflammatory properties.
1. Natural ingredients
Our skin absorbs the ingredients in personal care products, so it’s important to only use those that are good for your body. Natural plant-based skincare ingredients are packed with vitamins and minerals that support healthy skin. They feature antioxidants that are essential to restoring, balancing and strengthening the body’s cells. They also contain essential fatty acids that help calm acne, fight dryness, combat oiliness, smooth scars and increase skin elasticity. They can also contain naturally occurring hydrocolloids, which give a subtle texture to the product without needing harmful petrochemicals or synthesized polymers.
Look for organic and fair-trade plant ingredients that have been harvested sustainably. This helps prevent overharvesting and supports local farmers. It also ensures that the ingredient has not been processed and distilled in a way that reduces its effectiveness or causes long-term damage.
Natural plant-powered beauty products are safe for all skin types, especially sensitive skin. This is because they don’t contain any toxic chemicals like perfumes, dyes and synthetic fragrances.
Natural ingredients, such as tsubaki flowers, aloe vera and jojoba oil help to restore the skin barrier, making it soft and smooth. They also naturally deliver the phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals needed to keep your skin healthy and vibrant.
Aside from being plant-based, many plant-powered beauty products are vegan and cruelty free, so they’re perfect for those who want to avoid ingredients derived from animals and those who are opposed to animal testing (though you should always check the ingredient list of your favourite skincare product to ensure it isn’t tested on defenceless creatures). Some plants, such as ashwagandha, shiitake mushrooms and astaxanthin can help protect against environmental stressors.
3. No parabens
Plant-based skincare is formulated without parabens, which have been linked to breast cancer. Studies have shown that the long term exposure to parabens can cause them to build up in the body, mimicking the female hormone oestrogen.
Many plant-based skincare products are loaded with antioxidants to strengthen the skin and fight free radicals. They also include vitamins that support cell repair and naturally decrease signs of aging. The essential fats and acids found in these products offer a host of benefits including calming acne, quenching dryness, combating oiliness, and smoothing scars.
When looking for plant-based skincare, it is important to find out where these ingredients are sourced from. For example, hyaluronic acid is often derived from the combs of roosters. However, it can be sourced from plants through microbial fermentation.
4. No sulfates
Plant-based skincare is gaining popularity with people who want to clean up their daily grooming routines. Many of the same benefits are available to you with plant-based skincare as they are in a plant-based diet – increased gut health, better immunity, higher energy levels and improved skin health.
Plants contain a wide array of phytonutrients that help to strengthen and heal your skin. A single plant can have dozens of different compounds; for example, the essential oils pulled from calendula have 27 different biologically active properties.
Plant-based products also are naturally rich in antioxidants, which help to combat free radicals (unstable atoms that cause aging and other damage) and support cell repair and renewal. Additionally, natural plant-based products are free of the synthetic polymers found in most non-plant-based beauty products.
5. No animal testing
Plant-based ingredients are closer to our skin’s natural chemistry so they’re less likely to cause reactions like redness or itching. They also support the natural balance of microbiomes and are more sustainable than synthetics. In addition, using plant-based skincare products supports local agriculture and communities when done in a non-exploitative way.
Because of their natural chemistry, plants are full of phytonutrients. This is important because our bodies absorb everything we put on our skin, through intracellular and transcellular pathways. This means that chemicals absorbed from synthetic ingredients can end up in our bloodstream over time and affect our health. A single plant can contain dozens of phytonutrients; just the essential oils pulled from calendula have 27 different active compounds. Plant based skincare