Paraben-free: five safe, natural brands for men and women

With insufficient data on the long-term effects of chemicals used in beauty and grooming products, it makes sense to switch to chemical-free, says Daniela Soave

High5o chooses five safe, natural brands for men and women

You might think that products bearing the words ‘natural’, ‘organic’ and ‘pure’ are exactly that, but you’d be wrong. There is no legal definition of those descriptions. They’re just another word, like ‘lovely’.

Most of our shampoos, deodorants, toothpastes, shower gels, perfumes and aftershaves, hair gels and other grooming products contain chemicals. All have been cleared by the appropriate bodies for legal use but there is insufficient data on the effects of their  long-term use.

What are these nasty chemicals?

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES) are foaming agents, used not only used in soaps and shampoos, but also in products employed to de-grease car engines or to clean your car. SLS is absorbed into the body through the skin and cannot be metabolised by the liver. Once it has been absorbed, it can mimic the activity of the hormone oestrogen.

Phthalates are used to make shampoos, lotions and powders, perfumes, aftershaves and deodorants but also used in insect repellent and rocket propellant.are compounds.  They can can disrupt the endocrine system, (the collection of glands producing hormones that regulate metabolism, growth, tissue function, sleep, mood and sexual and reproductive functions) by mimicking our hormones.

Parabens are used as preservatives to fight bacteria and fungus, giving longevity to many products.  Most of us  have heard of parabens, because some products are now branded as ‘paraben-free’.  As long ago as 2002 the Toyko Metropolitan Research Laboratory of Public Health reported that parabens can adversely affect the function of the male reproductive system.

Five Chemical-Free Brands To Try

For Women

  1.  REN

Coveted by women round the world for its exquisite smelling Moroccan Rose, REN is ground-breaking skincare that uses only the latest 100% plant and mineral actives.

2.  Tisserand

Aromatherapy brand, Tisserand,  only ever uses pure essential oils and absolutes. Directly derived from plants, they are entirely natural and deliver their own unique therapeutic and aromatic properties.

3.  Darphin

This long established Parisian skincare line is based on a harmonious blend of plants and pure essential oils.

4.  Romilly Wilde

This new brand’s ‘clean beauty’ manifesto means it is 100% natural and doesn’t use any synthetic ingredients. Dedicating to healing and restoring the skin safely, Romilly Wilde offers an alternative range of therapeutic treatments and promises, ‘No doctors. No needles.  No clinics.’

5.  Votary

Created by make-up artist, Arabella Preston, her delicious-smelling range of cleansing and skin nurturing oils are made from 100% natural ingredients, without mineral oils, petro-chemicals and man-made chemicals.

For Men 

  1. Bulldog

Male skincare brand Bulldog was created by Simon Duffy when he discovered that the gentler, natural products his girlfriend (now wife) used were much kinder to her skin than his were.  Bulldog moisturisers, shower gels and aftershave balm are now available at Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose, Boots, Planet Organic and Whole Foods.

2.  Aveda (good for women too)

Aveda has long led the way providing men’s grooming products like shave creams and shampoos.

3. Kiehls (good for women too)

Kiehls, established in 1851, has developed formulas over generations that blend the finest natural ingredients to form men’s moisturisers, cleansers, shaving and men’s grooming products.

4. Neals Yard Remedies (good for women too)

Neals Yard has the largest collection of Soil Association certified, organic, natural, chemical free products in the world and an excellent men’s range.

5.  Organic Homme by Green People

This trusted, multi award-winning brand has swapped harmful chemicals for natural alternatives and organic essential oils.