The skin is made of the epidermis whose thickness varies from one person to the next. Epidermis comes from the Greek “over” and is divided into 5 sub-layers:
– Stratum Corneum (dead flat skin cells that shed every 2 to 4 weeks)
– Stratum Lucidum
– Stratum Granulosum
– Stratum Spinosum
– Basal Layer (the base – where new skin cells are produced and come to the surface at the stratum corneum level).
The dermis is the second major layer made of living cells, blood vessels, elastic fibres, collagen, lymphatic vessels, oil and sweat glands. The dermis is composed of 2 sub-layers:
– the papillary dermis made of collagen fibres (if weak, fine lines and wrinckles appear)
– the reticular dermis (regulates the body temperature, controls the sensations of pain, burns, inflammation). It determines the strenght and elasticity of the dermis. It is where lie the hair roots, oil glands, nails and blood vessels.
The third major layer is the sub-cutaneus layer with fat and connective tissues.
The skin is the largest and the most complicated organ of the body because the role of the skin is to protect the muscles, the organs, the body temperature and it serves an insulation. It prevents pathogens from entering the body but at the same time, it can absorb large amounts of substances (as much as 60% of the chemicals we come in contact with). This is why by using chemically-made creams, we contribute to poisoning our body.
Why non-organic products do not work?
As women, we all know that we can spend a fortune each month on creams, masks, beauty products, especially when the magic formula “anti-aging” or “anti-wrinkles” is advertised. Cosmetic companies know it and this is why we have 1000 of products to choose from. But do these products really work? Most of the time, the answer is NO because most of the time, the money is spent on marketing budget, magic formulations to attract customers and packaging instead of being spent on the product itself. Also, most beauty products contain ingredients that can actually produce the reversed effect and damage the skin instead of improving it. Few examples of these ingredients include mineral oil (aka petroleum) that actually clog the pores of the skin, preventing it from breathing and producing natural protective oils; dioxane, which is a coconut shell derivate (now produced also synthetically) that enters quickly into the blood stream and poisons it; parabens (preservatives) that can cause allergies, skin irritations and even wreck the endocrine system (hormones) that in turn lead to numerous health complications; alcohol, that actually dries out the skin, just to name a few.
Why choose certified organic cosmetics?
This is why when choosing a beauty care product, we should favor alternatives that are available to us such as certified organic skin care products or certified organic hair care products that are rich in only certified organic ingredients and natural oils. This helps not only reduce the amount of chemicals absorbed on a daily basis into the skin and into the bloodstream but it also provides the skin and hair with natural nourishing ingredients that will leave it hydrated, replenished, smooth, firm and healthy.
The rule of thumb is to apply topically only what we would ordinary intake internally. It is therefore important to read the list of ingredients before purchasing a beauty care product to ensure that it only contains certified organic ingredients because organic products are in fashion and labels such as “organic” or “natural” are not a guarantee that the product is a truly natural cosmetic.
At last, we are what we eat so the skin should not only nourish our skin and hair from the outside but also from the inside. A balanced diet rich in organic fruits, organic vegetables, nuts, essential fatty acids (omega 3, 6, 9 such as the ones contained in organic evening primrose oil or organic borage oil), antioxidants and water galore will contribute to a healthy-looking skin and serve as an anti-aging in the long run.