‘Natural’ Skincare: Is It Simply a Marketing Tactic?

‘Natural’ Skincare: Is It Simply a Marketing Tactic?

Your skincare products might not be as ‘natural’ as you think

Natural, eco-friendly, and safe skincare products are on the rise. Consumers are turning to natural products to feel more confident about what they’re putting on their skin every day and want to invest in products that match their sustainable values.

But, the U.S. doesn’t regulate what qualifies a product as ‘natural’ in the skincare market. And with a recent study showing only 42% of “natural skincare products” truly being all-natural1, you may be wondering how you can be sure if your favorite products are telling the truth.

We’re breaking down the most important information surrounding natural skincare to help you make empowered decisions that align with your values.

What defines ‘Natural’ skincare

The term ‘natural’ refers to a product that is derived from plant, mineral, or animal by-product and is free of any synthetic ingredients2. Natural products should be free of sulfates, parabens, or any substance that could potentially harm your environment.

The BIG problem with ‘Natural’ skincare products

In the US, there is no clear definition of what a skincare product needs to have (or not have) to be marketed as all-natural. And with the FDA having no clear definition of what ‘natural’ means or any regulations on how the word is used, it can be overwhelming to sort out which ones are telling the truth and which are not.

The Derm Review found a few shocking results after looking into 100 of the top natural skincare products. They found that:

  • 58% of skincare products marketed as ‘natural’ contain synthetic ingredients1
  • 78% of ‘natural’ face masks contain synthetic ingredients1
  • ‘Natural’ skincare products contain on average 2.4 synthetic ingredients1

Although marketing a product as ‘natural’ can be used as a tactic for brands to gain their customer’s trust, there are a few ways to ensure your products are 100% natural.

Look for this when shopping for natural products

You shouldn’t have to spend hours dissecting a label to be sure that your skincare products are truly all-natural.

Below are 3 of the most common synthetic ingredients found in ‘natural’ skincare products:

  • Ethylhexylglycerin was found in 24% of products claiming to be ‘natural’1
  • Phenoxyethanol was found in 22% of products1
  • And Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate was found in 13% of products1

Next time you’re shopping for a natural skincare product, take a quick scan over the ingredient list to see if any of these ingredients are listed.

What is the COSMOS-standard?

Unlike the US, there is a European standard that products must follow to be marketed as ‘natural.’

Beauty products can apply for a COSMOS certification. This certification ensures consumers that their products are naturally produced and meet the “highest feasible sustainability practices” in manufacturing3.

The COSMOS Standard follows these key guidelines:

  • “Promoting the use of products from agriculture, and respecting biodiversity.”3
  • “Using natural resources responsibly, and respecting the environment.”3
  • “Using processing and manufacturing that are clean and respectful of human and health and the environment.”3

This certification can help bring you peace of mind when shopping around for your next skincare product. With a COSMOS-standard certification, you can feel 100% confident in the product you’ve chosen--knowing it’s free of any harmful ingredients and aligns with your values.

How Mudita Earth embodies ‘Natural’

At Mudita Earth, formulating highly effective, all-natural products is our mission.

We’re committed to following the COSMOS-standard for our skincare products and are actively working towards obtaining a certification of approval. Each of our products is formulated with plant-based ingredients that are safe for you and the Earth.

Our products are designed to empower you. By choosing effective, safe, and sustainable products you’ll not only be taking care of yourself but your environment as well.

Let us know in the comments  

Are you shocked to hear that the majority of ‘natural’ skincare products on the market aren’t truly natural? Let us know what steps you’ll be taking to safeguard your health and environment.


1 “Is ‘Natural’ Skincare Really Natural? The Derm Review, https://thedermreview.com/natural-skincare-study/.

2 Natural Vs Organic Skincare Products: What Makes Them Different? Bare Magazine, https://barealchemy.com/blogs/news/difference-between-natural-and-organic-skincare-products.

3 About the COSMOS-Standard. COSMOS-STANDARD, https://www.cosmos-standard.org/about-the-cosmos-standard

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