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How to Leave the Toxins Out of your Skin Care

How to Leave the Toxins Out of your Skin Care

Marion O'Leary | September 3, 2020

When I first looked into making skincare almost 15 years ago, I quickly discovered that all was not well in the world of cosmetics. To make skincare products in the usual way, with added water, requires the addition of both preservatives and a range of other synthetic ingredients. We have talked about the problems with synthetics in skincare before, in particular the preservatives and the emulsifiers. Although I was dimly aware of this all those years ago, I had never thought that toxins could be lurking in my moisturiser, cleanser, shampoo, makeup, perfume or scented candles.  It turns out that the synthetic ingredients added to these products to give them a long shelf-life, a pleasant feel or an attractive fragrance could come at an enormous cost to our health. 

Surely all these synthetic ingredients are tested for safety?

Like most people, I presumed that if a product is on a shop shelf it must be safe, because toxic ingredients would not be permitted in commercially available products. The problem is that the laboratory and animal testing used to assess the safety of synthetic ingredients are short term tests.  There is no way to test their effects over the many decades each of us use them in the real world. Nor are they tested in tandem with exposure to other potential toxins, in different age ranges, or when skin diseases are present. This is why at Mokosh we took the decision to avoid all synthetics in our skincare. To use a synthetic ingredient that is considered safe based on short term laboratory tests was a gamble we did not want to take.

Every time I go back and check the latest science on some of the synthetic ingredients commonly used in skincare, I feel alarmed for the health of our community. But that’s not all – many of these synthetic ingredients are released into our waterways affecting wildlife and the health of our ecosystems. The good news is that you can have your healthiest skin ever without going near a synthetic ingredient. Our water-free products eliminate the need for preservatives, emulsifiers and the enormous range of potentially harmful synthetics that you don’t need on or in your body. Still need convincing? Read on!

Ingredients to watch out for

PHTHALATES

These are ‘plasticisers’ added to skin creams to improve their feel and the way they spread, they’re included in nail polish to improve its flexibility, and in synthetic fragrances in a huge range of products (think scented candles and deodorisers) to increase the longevity of their scent. The phthalates are potential hormone disruptors and known carcinogens in high doses.

PARABEN PRESERVATIVES

The parabens are the most widely used preservatives in cosmetics. They are known to be absorbed through the skin and have oestrogenic effects in the body when present in high enough doses. Their use in cosmetics is supposed to be kept below a certain percentage to reduce the risk of causing hormonal changes. However, some studies showed the parabens were included in cosmetics at higher than the recommended concentrations. Also, they are more easily absorbed through the skin of infants and children, and through inflamed skin. The intact form of parabens – ie the active form that acts as an estrogen – has been detected in the skin, fat, blood, urine, umbilical blood and placenta of humans (1). Of particular concern was a recent study that showed even low doses of parabens can result in estrogen-like effects in laboratory animals – even at doses within the recommended existing safety limit for parabens (2). Parabens are also anti-androgenic, which means they inhibit the effects of testosterone, and may also increase the risk of weight gain. 

There are also concerns about the effect of parabens released into our water systems – parabens have been detected in waterways, and in the tissues of fish, marine mammals, marine birds and their eggs (3).

FORMALDEHYDE DONOR PRESERVATIVES

These preservatives are commonly used in skincare and work by releasing low levels of formaldehyde over a long period of time, to kill bacteria and fungi that contaminate water-containing cosmetics. Examples of these include DMDM hydantoin, quaternium-15, and diazolidinyl urea. Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen, but when used at the recommended concentration, they are considered safe. However, when they are present in combination with other substances such as bromopol and amines, they can form nitrosamines, which can penetrate the skin and are also known carcinogens. Formaldehyde donor preservatives are also known as skin sensitisers (4). 

PEGS

PEGS (polyethylene glycols) are petroleum-based compounds that are widely used in skincare products as thickeners, solvents and emulsifiers. In themselves, they are not particularly concerning, but, during manufacture, they may become contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, a probable carcinogen, and ethylene oxide, a known carcinogen. You can identify PEGS in your ingredient list by the terms PPG, PEG, and polysorbate and look for ingredients that end in –eth such as laureth, steareth, ceteareth. Although some manufacturers strip the dangerous contaminants from the PEG ingredients, there is no way of knowing whether a company does this – it is up to the consumer to request the information (5).

TRICLOSAN

Triclosan is a preservative and anti-bacterial that may be added to toothpaste, mouthwash, hand sanitiser, and anti-bacterial soaps. Triclosan is easily absorbed by the skin and through the mouth. There are concerns that it is a potential hormone disruptor, and that it may also contribute to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. It also has a potentially severe environmental impact – in water triclosan can be converted to dioxins, which are serious environmental pollutants, and can also combine with chlorine to form chloroform, a probable carcinogen.

Combinations of toxins and confounding factors

Unlike the sterile and controlled environment of the laboratory, in the real world, our human population has a range of genetic backgrounds, all with different abilities to metabolise and eliminate toxins. It is also important to remember that the skin barrier is less effective in the very young and in the old, and in inflamed or damaged skin. This means that a safe dose of a toxin for a healthy adult may not be safe for a newborn baby, or the developing foetus in a pregnant woman, or a child with eczema. Finally, we are exposed not just to one potential carcinogen, like those poor laboratory rats – we are exposed to a cocktail of them. The air, our water and our food all contain toxins at various levels, and when we add known carcinogens and hormone disruptors from our cosmetics, even in small doses, we are performing a very uncontrolled experiment in safety on ourselves. There is really no way to predict whether the toxins in our cosmetics will be the final straw that tips us into a serious disease state.

Reducing your toxic load

We are able to exert some control over the level of toxins in our bodies by our choice of food, water and cosmetics. Consuming whole organic foods as much as possible, drinking good quality filtered water, and choosing clean, toxin-free skincare makes sense. When it comes to skincare, our award-winning range proves that you don’t need synthetics in your skincare to have beautiful, healthy skin. In fact, we regularly receive messages from our customers telling us that since switching to Mokosh, their skin issues are resolved and they have their best skin ever. Making the switch to clean, nutrient-rich skincare was never so easy!

REFERENCES

(1) Matwiejczuk, N. et al (2020) ‘Review of the Safety of Application of Cosmetic Products Containing Parabens’. Journal of Applied Toxicology.

(2) Sun, L. et al. (2016) The estrogenicity of methylparaben and ethylparaben at doses close to the acceptable daily intake in immature Sprague-Dawley rats. Sci. Rep. 6: 25173

(3) Julian, C and Magrini, GA. (2017) “Cosmetic ingredients as emerging pollutants of environmental and health concern.” Cosmetics

(4) http://www.safecosmetics.org/get-the-facts/chemicals-of-concern/formaldehyde/#_edn23

(5) http://www.safecosmetics.org/get-the-facts/chemicals-of-concern/ethoxylated-ingredients/

What’s all the fuss about Oil Cleansing?

What’s all the fuss about Oil Cleansing?

Marion O'Leary | August 11, 2020

 

We often hear that cleansing is the key to healthy skin. The daily accumulation of ‘dirt’ on our skin in the form of makeup, pollutants, dust, our own sebum and dead skin cells can result in dull, lifeless skin and sometimes blocked pores that can cause acne. The important question is how can we cleanse our skin in a way that doesn’t interfere with its function, that will also help it become healthy and resilient? We believe we have the perfect answer, and that you will soon be saying goodbye to those foaming, liquid cleansers you always thought you needed.

The problem with detergent cleansers

Many of us grew up with the idea that the antidote to dirt and oil on our skin is good old-fashioned soap, or at least a liquid detergent cleanser that leaves our skin feeling squeaky clean. It makes sense. Soaps and detergents destroy bacteria, dissolve oil and wash away dirt. They do that very well. The only problem is that they don’t stop with the excess oil and dirt, they can also attack the oils and proteins on our living skin. These specialised oils and proteins make up our skin’s all-important barrier that keeps water in our body, and bacteria and irritants out. Overuse of detergents can also disturb our skin’s microbiome, increasing the risk of skin problems. 

Of course, not all liquid cleansers contain detergents as harsh as SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate).  Modern technology has led to the development of liquid cleansers that use very mild detergents, that are well tolerated by many. But everyone’s skin is different, and our skin changes as time passes. The truth is that any detergent has the potential to harm the relatively sensitive skin on our face. The result of damaging our skin’s barrier can vary from the development of dry, flakey skin, to the onset of red, inflamed and itchy skin that we know as eczema. 

Our skin cleans itself

Our skin continually renews itself. Cells, proteins and lipids of the epidermis that make up our skin barrier are being constantly manufactured, and as cells mature they move outwards until they are eventually shed, or exfoliate, from our skin. In addition, our sebaceous glands secrete sebum into hair follicles, that we see as pores. The sebum then covers our skin and hair, continually forming and renewing our own natural moisturiser. It helps keep our skin water-proof and also has some anti-bacterial function. Because our sebum and skin are being constantly renewed, it does, in a fashion, clean itself. Detergent cleansers can remove too much sebum, and can also destroy the lipids and proteins that keep our skin intact. 

Our approach to skin cleansing is to work with our skin’s natural processes. Our Facial Cleanser, Exfoliator & Mask works with our skin’s natural exfoliation by aiding the removal of dead cells and other debris that can clog our pores – read more detail about this here. Our Makeup Remover & Cleansing Oil dissolves the dirt on our skin that can block pores, allowing the free flow of sebum and removing excess sebum build-up. It does not strip the skin of sebum indiscriminately like a detergent does. These two products facilitate the skin’s self-cleansing process using only skin-supportive and skin-feeding botanicals.

How does oil cleansing work?

The idea behind oil cleansing is that oil dissolves dirt and oil, and the excess is removed with water, warmth and a soft cloth. It’s that simple – no detergent, no antibacterials, just simple pure plant oils and your skin is left clean and refreshed, rather than dehydrated and itchy.

Here is how you do it:

  • gently massage the cleansing oil onto your skin for 3-5 minutes.

  • during the massage, the oil will combine with excess sebum, dirt, and other impurities.

  • rinse a soft cloth in warm water. Some recommend using steaming hot water, but because excessively hot water can damage your skin, we recommend keeping it at body temperature. Press the warm cloth onto your skin for a few seconds to warm and absorb the oil, then rinse the cloth in warm water and repeat 2 or 3 times until your skin no longer feels oily.

  • follow with toner and moisturiser, or if your skin doesn’t feel completely clear, use our Facial Cleanser, Exfoliator & Mask to perform a gentle exfoliation and remove any oil remnants. To tone, we recommend our Pure Hydrosol Toner (no alcohol, emulsifiers or preservatives) and either our Beauty Serums for oily/combination or normal/dry skin one of our Face Creams (no emulsifiers or preservatives).

  • most people like to oil cleanse between 1 and 3 times per week.

Can I perform oil cleansing if I have oily skin?

While oil cleansing will benefit all skin types, if you have oily skin, we have some very good news! Oil cleansing will benefit oily skin because (i) it helps to keep your pores clear, and pore blockage is one of the main causes of acne (read more here) , (ii) it helps remove excess sebum without damaging your skin’s barrier. We talk about how a damaged skin barrier can also contribute to the development of acne here. (iii) if you oil cleanse with the right oils, you can actually help reduce the amount of sebum produced by oily skin. Oils abundant in linoleic acid not only help restore the skin’s barrier, they can also regulate the amount of sebum your skin produces, and have also been shown to reduce the size of microcomedones, or blackheads. We discuss this in our acne blog here.

What makes our Makeup Remover & Cleansing Oil ideal for oil cleansing?

Not all oils are suitable for skin cleansing. The more saturated oils, like coconut oil, can clog the pores, while oils high in monounsaturated fatty acids, like olive oil, may not bind well with sebum or penetrate the skin’s pores, and in oily skins will contribute to the fatty acid imbalance that can lead to increased sebum production. Neither of these oils would be suitable for oily or combination skin.

The ideal cleansing oil is rich in the omega-6 fatty acid linoleic acid and other oils that have the ability to penetrate the pores and blend with sebum. An additional benefit of linoleic acid-rich oils is their skin barrier-building properties, which are important for all skin types (read about the role of essential fatty acids and the skin barrier here) and their ability to normalise sebum production in oily skin. Secondly, we consider that performing oil cleansing is a great opportunity to feed your skin, so we chose the most nourishing combination of oils we could find to help nourish your skin while you oil cleanse.

We chose pumpkin seed oil as the major ingredient for our cleansing oil. It is a dark, richly coloured oil because of its very high content of b-carotene, or pro-vitamin A. It is also rich in vitamin E, making it extremely rich in antioxidants, and contains abundant anti-inflammatory phytosterols and high levels of the all-important linoleic acid. Next, we added jojoba oil, which is unlike most botanical oils in structure, being more like a liquid wax than a triglyceride. Its unusual chemical structure allows it to blend easily with sebum and penetrate the pores without clogging. This allows our cleansing oil to reduce sebum build-up both on the skin surface and in the pores, which is particularly beneficial for oily skin. Jojoba oil also contains vitamin E and other antioxidants. The third component is baobab seed oil, which is also rich in linoleic acid, b-carotene, vitamin E and phytosterols. Finally, sesame oil has high levels of linoleic acid, and has both antioxidant and antibacterial properties. In Ayurveda, sesame oil also considered one of the most beneficial oils for performing self-massage or abhyanga.  These four oils work synergistically to deeply cleanse your skin in the most gentle and effective way, leaving it fresh and clean, and beautifully nourished.

Removing Makeup

We formulated this product to be multi-purpose. Not everyone wants to oil cleanse, but because of its gentle, yet extremely effective cleansing action, it makes a beautiful Makeup Remover. Just remember that when you use this product to remove your makeup at the end of the day, you are also performing a gentle cleanse, helping protect your skin’s barrier and microbiome, and feeding it potent antioxidants and anti-inflammatory phytosterols. Now you can really sleep easily.

Processed Food and Processed Skin Care – Why We Should Get Back to Basics

Processed Food and Processed Skin Care – Why We Should Get Back to Basics

Marion O'Leary | July 22, 2020

Sometimes I believe we don’t need more evidence that a fresh, wholefood, predominantly plant-based diet is the best choice for a healthy life. We know that processed food is often high in sugar and contains preservatives and other synthetic ingredients that can have negative health impacts. However, when I came across this article published in Nature showing that the emulsifiers added to many packaged foods can lead to severe gut changes and increase the risk of obesity, I was surprised. It made me wonder how many people are aware that the synthetic emulsifiers added to foods like bread and ice cream can have such profound effects.

We have talked about emulsifiers in our blog before (you can read it here). They are detergent-like molecules that are added to water and oil-containing skin care, allowing the oil and water to form a stable emulsion. Mokosh is one of the few brands that does not use emulsifiers – we don’t use them because their detergent action can upset the skin’s all-important barrier function. A detergent is something we definitely don’t need on our skin! 

Many people don’t realise that emulsifiers are also common additions to the packaged foods that are popular in western diets. In the study I found, the two emulsifiers that were examined were polysorbate-80 (E433, P80, may be added to ice cream, frozen desserts, pickles, bread, cakes, salad dressing, shortenings and chocolate), and carboxymethylcellulose (E466, or CMC, commonly added to  ice cream, margarine, bread, cakes, biscuits, jam and cheese products). When tiny quantities were fed to mice, they developed gut inflammation, a change in their gut microbiome, and metabolic syndrome – a tendency to become obese. Alarming findings to say the least! Equally concerning is that many other emulsifiers are used in processed foods, and their effects on the gut are still unclear.

The fact that we accept the inclusion of synthetic emulsifiers in our food, without truly knowing its effect on our bodies, is a symptom of the way of life we have become accustomed to. As our lives become busier, we look for the convenience of pre-prepared foods. It is tempting to purchase packaged foods rather than make it ourselves from fresh ingredients. What we may not realise is that manufacturers don’t create foods like we do at home. The product must have a long shelf-life – it mustn’t grow microorganisms, and it must look, taste and feel the same months after it was manufactured. This may require including a host of synthetic additives with still unknown, and potentially disastrous effects on our health. 

Getting to grips with the ingredient list on packaged food is a minefield – and it’s incredibly important that we educate ourselves and our loved ones on how to interpret them. Going for pure, whole foods, predominantly fresh fruit, vegetables and whole grains and pulses, and making as much as possible from scratch is the safest and healthiest way to eat. The spin-off is that we can reduce our packaging waste and eliminate hidden palm oil – an almost ubiquitous ingredient in packaged food.

The same goes for skin care. Virtually all other skin care brands include water, emulsifiers and preservatives as standard ingredients. These ingredients give products a shelf-life, but at a potential cost to the health of our skin. In contrast, Mokosh’s water-free and synthetic-free products have a minimum 2 year shelf-life, providing they are stored below 30 degrees C. This means our range is as valuable for what it doesn’t contain (preservatives, emulsifiers and other synthetic ingredients) as for what it does contain (100% certified organic botanicals packed with antioxidants, vitamins, essential fatty acids and other plant nutrients). They are the junk food-free skin care you have been looking for. Your skin will thank you for it!

Your Family Guide to Doing Mother’s Day Right!

Your Family Guide to Doing Mother’s Day Right!

Marion O'Leary | May 4, 2020

 

Like many, I think Mother’s Day is a great idea. After all, it celebrates one of the world’s most difficult jobs, also the most poorly paid and possibly the least appreciated, that also happens to be one of the most important. But the consumerism linked to Mother’s Day can bring mixed feelings – after all, a day of celebration that also results in the accumulation of masses of unwanted trinkets and the dumping of tonnes of plastic waste seems counter-productive. And let’s face it – not that much fun for mum.

We’ve come up with a family guide to celebrating Mother’s Day while taking care of Mother Earth, and we think your mum will love you for it. Here are the ground rules:

1. Choose your candles carefully

So you’ve rejected the toxic paraffin candles (well done, you!) and you’re eyeing up a plant-based candle for mum? It’s worth checking whether the wax is made from GM soy – which would mean pesticides, herbicides and insectageddon, together with questionable ethics. If you buy a plant-based candle, make sure it’s free of palm oil and GM, but better still find an ethical brand that’s certified ethically grown. We believe the safest and most ethical candles are made with unscented certified organic beeswax –  they smell pretty wonderful just as they are. Certified organic means the bees are foraging on healthy, poison-free crops – and when bees are protected, so are the other insects.

2. Don’t buy anything with synthetic fragrance

Most candles, perfumes and soaps, as well as air-fresheners and car fragrances, are made with synthetic fragrance. These long-lasting and intense aromas are not safe to breathe. For health reasons and for the sake of the environment, buy your mum products that are either free of fragrance, or fragranced with good quality essential oils.

3. Don’t buy an ornament

Chances are, your mum has enough ‘things’ and finding a place to put another one might actually give her a small headache. I know she’s smiling but she has to because she’s your mum. Don’t do it.

4. Don’t buy things made of, or packaged in plastic

Call me ungrateful, but when I receive something displayed in a mass of plastic, all I’m looking at is that plastic, worrying about whether it really will be recycled, and will it end up in a whale’s belly? Sticking to things made of wood, glass, metal or natural fabric is automatically way up there on the ‘good taste’ spectrum. But you must also ensure it fulfils point 5 below.

5. If you must buy a ‘thing’, make sure it’s something beautiful, useful or edible

Please be careful here. If the beautiful thing you have chosen is in the ornament category, be mindful that your mum’s idea of beauty might be different from yours. Most mums are more than happy to receive consumables – beautiful organic food that you’ve purchased knowing it’s something she loves to eat, food you prepared yourself from scratch, something she would love to wear that’s been made from natural fibres by a company with good ethics, a great book or some organic skincare (I know where you can get some).

6. Buy her an experience

The thing mums treasure more than anything else is time they get to spend with their family, preferably when it does not involve shopping, cooking and doing the dishes. Spending time together eating, watching a movie, going to a play, or listening to music and just being together is precious to her.

7. Buy her time to look after herself

Time to look after herself is probably the one thing your mum is most in need of. Hiring a house-cleaner or a baby sitter to give her a few hours of free time would feel miraculous (assuming that as in most households she does the lion’s share of these tasks). She could spend the spare hours kicking up her heels with friends or relaxing in the bath soaking in something gorgeous (e.g. this or this), reading her book and sipping something delicious.

8. Repeat numbers 6 and 7 frequently throughout the year as a sign of your true love and appreciation.

And have a wonderful day!

How to Care For Your Baby’s Skin – Keeping it Simple

How to Care For Your Baby’s Skin – Keeping it Simple

Marion O'Leary | April 25, 2020

 

When it comes to caring for your baby’s skin, it is important to keep in mind that newborn skin is immature – it is more fragile and its barrier function is not yet fully developed. In recent years, the importance of the skin’s microbiome for the health of the skin and for the normal development of our immune system has become better understood. Maintaining a healthy skin microbiome on your baby’s skin is particularly important (see our blog on this here). These factors should be considered when choosing how to care for your baby’s skin, and the good news is that keeping things simple and natural is going to be best for your baby.

How is newborn skin different?

When our skin is fully mature, it forms a good physical barrier to the environment that makes it semi-waterproof, prevents dehydration and keeps out irritants, toxins and microorganisms. This barrier is formed by the skin’s outermost layer of cells and fatty molecules called the stratum corneum. Immediately after birth, a baby’s skin has to make a rapid transformation as it adapts to the outside world. Because a newborn’s skin is initially thin and fragile with a reduced barrier function, more water is lost through newborn skin than mature skin. It is also more sensitive to irritants and, importantly, more permeable to toxins. It is not until around 12 months of age that full barrier function is developed.

Our skin also protects us by promoting the growth of beneficial bacterial species that keep out harmful microorganisms. These bacteria make up our skin’s microbiome and have an important role to play in maintaining good skin health. When a baby is born, the skin is rapidly colonised by bacteria, and their composition has a major effect on the health of the baby’s skin.

Mature healthy skin has a pH of around 5, creating an ‘acid mantle’ that discourages the growth of harmful bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus. The pH of newborn skin is higher than mature healthy skin – around 6.3-7.5 (1) and this generally drops to a pH of around 5 within a few days of birth (4). 

The skin microbiome and skin pH are strongly linked. For example, skin that has a pH of around 5 and supports a broad range of bacterial species is associated with good skin health, whereas skin affected by eczema, or atopic dermatitis, has a higher pH and a more narrow range of bacterial species (3).

How to keep your baby’s skin healthy

When caring for your baby’s skin, the aim should be to protect its barrier function – this means maintaining the correct skin pH, not removing protective lipids from the skin, and minimising the use of any product that will alter the skin’s microbiome. At the same time, the skin must be kept clean and free of irritants, and should not contact any potential toxins. When choosing skincare products, it is important to remember that the younger your baby, the more easily her skin will absorb chemicals. For this reason, it is important to take extreme care when choosing the products that come into contact with your baby’s skin.

BATHING

Newborn babies are covered in a creamy substance known as the ‘vernix’ which is made of water, lipids, proteins and antimicrobial molecules. Maintaining this layer on the skin rather than washing it off is linked to better skin hydration, a lower skin pH and better maintenance of body temperature after birth (1). 

Most health professionals recommend that baths should be short – no longer than 5 minutes – to protect the skin’s barrier function. They should also be infrequent, around twice a week according to some (2), with routine attention to the face and nappy areas between baths. Rubbing of the skin with sponges or cloths should be minimised as this can also damage the skin’s barrier. Use of soaps and detergents in the bath is controversial and some recommend avoiding detergents altogether. Harsh detergents like sodium lauryl sulphate are potent skin irritants that also damage the skin’s lipid barrier and should not be used (2), and to some extent, all detergents risk removing the lipid content of the skin that creates the skin’s physical barrier. 

What to avoid in skin products

PRESERVATIVES

Many baby creams and shampoos contain synthetic ingredients that pose a particular risk to babies. The preservatives that are added to water-based creams, shampoos and conditioners are potential irritants, and the paraben preservatives, which are absorbed more easily into permeable newborn skin, should be particularly avoided because of their oestrogenic effects on the body (you can read our blog on the dangers of paraben preservatives here).

However it is not just the irritant and toxic effects of preservatives that can cause problems. Preservatives are powerful antibacterial and anti-fungal agents that keep water-containing skin care products free of microorganisms. These preservatives are still active when applied to the skin, and so they have the potential to alter the baby’s skin microbiome. For babies at risk of eczema or atopic dermatitis, this could have significant impacts.

EMULSIFIERS

Water-containing skin care products also contain emulsifiers, which are detergent-like molecules that stabilise the water/oil emulsion. Emulsifiers can irritate the skin, set up allergic responses and can also damage barrier function. You can read more about the problems associated with emulsifiers here.

FRAGRANCES

Fragrances and dyes of all types should be avoided in the first year of life because of the risk of sensitisation and the development of allergic-type reactions (2). 

What’s wrong with mainstream baby products?

Firstly, virtually all mainstream baby products contain preservatives, emulsifiers and fragrances. For those not familiar with the chemical names of the ingredients listed on skincare products, finding a product lacking these ingredients requires a lot of research. Basically, any product that contains water, or aqua, will contain both a preservative and an emulsifier. And any product that smells floral or fragrant or includes the word parfum will contain synthetic or natural fragrance. Even products that claim to be ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ or ‘pH balanced’ may contain preservatives, emulsifiers and fragrances.

How Mokosh baby products are different

All Mokosh products are made without preservatives and emulsifiers, and we have created a range specifically suited to babies which also lack fragrance. Because they are made without synthetic ingredients, using only organic botanical oils, they will not harm baby skin if absorbed through the skin’s permeable barrier. They will also protect the skin’s barrier function because they are free of emulsifiers, and will not alter the microbiome because they lack preservatives.

Our baby range includes:

PURE BODY BALM

Mokosh Pure Body Balm.jpg

This is a thick balm that creates a protective barrier on the skin, making a lovely natural nappy cream. It includes shea and cacao butter, which are known for their healing properties, and contains natural vitamin E and provitamin A.  

PURE FACE & BODY CREAM

Mokosh Pure Face And Body Cream

Made with shea butter together with a range of healing and restorative oils, this is a vitamin-rich cream that can be massaged over the skin after a bath. 

BABY MASSAGE OIL

Mokosh Baby Massage Oil

Made with a range of rapidly absorbed oils rich in essential fatty acids, this un-fragranced oil is perfect for performing a gentle massage. Massage is particularly calming for your baby after bathing (see how to perform Ayurvedic baby massage here: https://www.mokosh.com.au/blog/2014/10/19/ayurvedic-baby-massage

OLIVE OIL SOAP FRAGRANCE FREE

Mokosh Olive Oil Soap

We believe it is important to minimise the use of soaps with babies because any detergent has the potential to harm the baby’s barrier function. However, some form of detergent may be needed around the nappy area and when babies start moving and getting into real dirt. Although our olive oil soap is extremely mild, its pH is alkaline, like all true soaps, and contact time with the skin should be minimised. We suggest thoroughly rinsing away soap with warm water and following with our balm, cream or massage oil to help restore the skin’s pH.

REFERENCES

1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4593874/

2.  http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?pid=S0365-05962011000100014&script=sci_arttext&tlng=en

3. https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0192443

4.https://www.rch.org.au/uploadedFiles/Main/Content/rchcpg/hospital_clinical_guideline_index/Key%20Differences%20in%20Infant%20Skin.pdf

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