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Posted by on in Natural Ingredients
Ingredient Spotlight: Coconut Oil

The coconut fruit has provided meat, water, milk and oil to tropical communities for thousands of years and has been deemed “The Tree of Life” by Asian and Pacific islanders for its extensive dietary and medicinal applications. Mentions of the medicinal benefits of the coconut can be found in ancient Sanskrit text, and coconut oil is used in Ayurvedic medicine, an alternative healing process from India estimated to be 5000 years old. Traditional medicinal applications of coconut oil include fevers, nausea, rashes, toothaches, ulcers, colds, lice, bruises and more. 

At the end of World War II, coconut oil was found in the United States in the form of margarine, but it soon fell out of favor as a household staple due studies concluding all saturated fats increased cholesterol and risk for heart disease. It is now believed coconut’s unique combination of short and medium chained fatty acids, primarily lauric acid and myristic acid, precludes it from negatively impacting health.

Coconut oil isn’t just for cooking or alternative medicine; it’s one of the most widely used natural oils in personal care. Coconut oil is touted for its ability to do everything from repairing damaged hair to reducing wrinkles to blocking UV rays. Where there is little clinical evidence of coconut oil being a beauty miracle, there is plenty of antidotal evidence coconut oil is a master moisturizer and potent antioxidant.

Coconut oil is pressed from the seeds of the coconut palm tree and is comprised of fatty acids including lauric, linoleic, myristic, oleic, caprylic, capric, stearic and palmitric. Studies on the skin care benefits of these fatty acids lead skin care experts to believe coconut oil isn’t all hype. For example, lauric acid and caprylic acid could both be effective in fighting acne due to antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Vitamin E and vitamin D, potent antioxidants that protects skin from free radical damage, joins this fatty acid super group. Coconut oil penetrates the skin, making it the perfect vehicle to deliver the benefits of other natural oils and botanical extracts.

Nourish your body from head to toe with coconut oil by trying a few of these exfoliating, moisturizing and cleansing products:

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Posted by on in Natural Ingredients

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Used for centuries in Africa to moisturize and protect skin from the harsh elements, “shea butter is the skin’s best friend,” according to the American Shea Butter Institute. The shea tree (Butyrospermum parkii), nicknamed “The Tree of Life” because every part of the tree is used as a natural health remedy, produces mango-sized green fruits, the nuts (seeds) from which shea butter is extracted. Shea butter has been studied for its chemical makeup and is a favorite in natural skin and hair care.

These are some of shea butter’s nutrient benefits:

  • Vitamin A aids in skin protection and healing
  • Vitamin D promotes skin cell growth 
  • Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, protects against sun and free radical damage and slows the signs of aging
  • Essential fatty acids to help with skin cell renewal and acts as a skin protector, soothing dry chapped skin

Shea butter is renowned for its emollient and anti-inflammatory properties to sooth minor skin conditions such as sun burns, small wounds, eczema, allergies, blemishes, cracks and bruises. Shea butter can decrease the amount of moisture loss in skin and hair and stimulate collagen production to strengthen skin. It is said the moisturizers present in shea butter are also some of the same moisturizers produced by skin’s sebaceous glands, making it suitable for all skin types. As an added bonus, shea butter could have sunscreen properties (up to SPF 6) due to naturally occurring cinnamic acid.

For softer, smoother looking skin and hair, choose products enhanced with shea butter*, like some of our Lemongrass Spa Products’ favorites. Your skin and hair will thank you!

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Posted by on in Natural Ingredients
Ingredient Spotlight: Jojoba Oil

Pressed from seeds of the scrub Simmondsiachinensis and used for centuries to treat wounds, jojoba [pronounced hoh-hoh-buhoil stars in skincare products due to its numerous benefits. Comprised of fatty acids and fatty alcohols, this golden liquid isn’t oil at all but a liquid wax, and is loaded with vitamin E, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, myristic acid, iodine and the minerals silicon, chromium, copper and zinc.

Revered in folk medicine for its skin healing properties, studies on jojoba oil, as with many natural skincare ingredients, have only recently begun. A preliminary study on the effects of jojoba oil on mild acne, in which participants used a clay and jojoba oil mask, showed an average of 54% acne reduction, and jojoba was found to help speed the closure of wounds according to a 2011 study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology. Inflammation can be blamed for skin conditions such as eczema and acne, and a 2005 study concluded jojoba could help reduce inflammation. Results of these studies confirm why natural skincare manufacturers choose to use this ancient oil.

These are just some of the reasons to use jojoba oil:

  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Quick absorbing with no greasy residue
  • Antibacterial & anti-inflammatory for soothing dry, itchy skin
  • Increases hydration to skin
  • Improves skin’s suppleness
  • Fights the signs of aging due to high levels of antioxidants Vitamin E and Vitamin C
  • Calms and heals sunburnt skin
  • Removes buildup on hair follicles which can help reduce dandruff

Reap jojoba oil’s nourishing benefits by trying our now famous seasonal favorites such as Frosted Cranberry Hand & Body Soap, Perfectly Pumpkin Body Polish and Candy Cane Hand & Body Lotion. Or pamper your skin all year long with the #1 selling Healing Elements Balm, chapped skin savior Ultra Hydrating Body Crème and creamy new Men’s Essentials Shaving Crème, just to name a few.

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