Rights: The University of Waikato Published 27 November 2007 Download

Why does skincare producer Karen Farley think natural is a better way to go?


Blue Mountain College Why did you decide to use natural products?

Karen Farley: Good question, actually, because if you’ve just heard me say that it’s a lot cheaper to use synthetic products, why don’t I do that?

Because for me, and a good group of people out there, we are becoming increasingly aware of the problems of certain synthetic ingredients, particularly a lot of the ingredients used for preservation, which is a big problem with skincare range.

A particular, very common ingredient for preservation is called a paraben. You have methylparabenethylparaben and so on. Those have been implicated in particular cancers and so on. Particularly, I think parabens have been found in the cancer cells of breast cancer and so on.

Your skin is an organ. It breathes. It soaks everything into it and anything that you’re putting on your skin is actually going though into your system. Different chemicals have been found in the liver and the lymph nodes and all the sort of places which go round your body trying to clear out toxins and things. Some of those things [chemicals] will sit there.

It may or may not cause you problems later on. It probably may not make you as optimally healthy as you would like to be. You may, as you get older, start feeling a bit tired. You might have puffy eyes, or whatever. You may not actually develop a really bad condition, but you might.

And I would like to try and eliminate some of those things that I have some control over, like what’s going onto my skin, what’s going into my stomach. Genetics - I can’t do too much about that, so I’m just hoping that those things are okay.

So that is why I prefer to use natural.

There are other things too. A lot of the ingredients can cause irritations on the skin. So some of you may find that you use different skincare products and you might come out in a rash, or whatever. Or it might not be immediately, it might be over time.

Now, I’d like to point out here too, that just because something is natural doesn’t necessarily mean though it’s going to be 100% benefical to you. You can still have skin reactions to a natural indregient particularly some of the oils are very rich and some people find them too rich and it might bring them out in spots or whatever. So I would like to say the other side of the coin too, just because something it natural doesn't necessarily mean it is going to be thoroughly good for you personally. But I think you can try a variety of natural products to find one that suits you and at least you know that you have eliminated some of the nasties from yourself.