the myth "all-natural" equals all good.
Bragging about being all-natural is so yesterday. Toxins and irritants can be found in all-natural and synthetic skin care alike. In fact, many of the ingredients that really keep a product safe and effective are synthetic. That's not a bad word! (More on that below.)
Final verdict: All natural skin care is not known for its effectiveness and can cause sensitivity and irritation.
the myth Essential oils are good for our skin.
Essential oils are put into a product to make it smell nice. The problem is that they can cause irritations and create sensitivities while providing no direct benefit to our skin. Our skin actually perceives essential oils to be complex chemical compounds. Ask yourself: does the fact that a product smells like fruit or candy benefit our skin in any way? The answer is no. It only provides a better sensual experience which you can get in other ways.
Final verdict: Essential oils in skin care products irritate our skin and get in the way of the good, effective ingredients we are paying for.
the myth Ingredients that you can't pronounce are bad for you.
Final verdict: The length or pronunciation level of difficulty means zero. In fact, some of the most irritating ingredients on the market are the prettiest sounding ones.
the myth Synthetic ingredients are bad.
Not only are synthetic ingredients not always bad, but they can in fact be completely necessary to keep the product safe and effective. Like with anything else, there are bad ones out there, but there are also safe alternatives that we as manufacturers can and should find and choose. Sometimes it can be more costly to go with the less hazardous alternatives, but we think it's a no-brainer.
Final verdict: Our formulations are what they are (effective) because we use safe preservatives that keep them safe. This for us means using synthetic AND natural, but all non-toxic.
the myth Skin care brands with cute names and funky packaging don't work as well as clinical brands.
Well, I had to mention it. Not everything about my brand can be super serious like its ingredients and formulations. I'm not a doctor, so I felt that the appearance and name could be a little more fun and lighthearted. Besides, I bet no one will forget the name "Drunk Elephant" anytime soon!
Final verdict: Always check the ingredients because the opposite also holds true. A very clinical sounding name and serious looking packaging doesn't always equal effective skin care. Percentages of actives matter, people. Always check them out and know what you are paying for.
the myth AHAs, BHAs and L-Ascorbic Acids aren't good for sensitive skin.
This one frustrates me because we can all use beneficial acids, no matter our skin type. The right percentages and accompanying ingredients make all the difference. Most, if not the vast majority, of products our there that contain glycolics and vitamin c also contain irritating ingredients that spoil the results. Could this be the real problem?
Final verdict: Active ingredients can get a bad rap by the company they keep. One of the things i hear the most is that people who could never use vitamin C and Glycolic products before, can now use mine. Watch out for filler ingredients that are there for marketing purposes, they consistently get in the way of the expensive ingredients that you are paying for and would prove effective on your skin if given the chance. And yes, when I talk about irritating ingredients, I'm talking about you, essential oils.
the myth Oils cause acne.
Actually, they can prevent it. It must be the right kind of oil, though. Oils with larger molecules like coconut and olive will sit right on top of the skin and act as a barrier. This is fine for some complexions, but disastrous for others. They can clog your pores something fierce. But an oil like Marula, which is super high in antioxidants and omegas, will soak right in your skin without leaving any residue.
Final verdict: If your skin is dry, your oil glands will overproduce to try to compensate, resulting in that greasy look and more acne. The right oil can trick your skin into thinking it is producing enough on its own, delivering balanced skin with fewer breakouts.
the myth We don't need sunscreen on cloudy days.
Damaging rays can get through windows and clouds. Enough said.
Final verdict: Wear your physical sunscreen every day, all day. It is the number one thing you can do to fight aging...no contest.
the myth All bar cleansers have a high pH level and dry out skin.
There is a stigma around bar cleansers to be sure. To quote a well-known skin care expert: "Don't ever let a bar soap or a bar CLEANSER touch your face". Unfortunately, the same expert has her own skin care line, that only offers liquid cleansers, so it's difficult to know what to believe sometimes. The thing is, though, not all bar cleansers are created equal and, in fact, they are making a big comeback. The pH level of a bar cleanser is important, and its ingredients are important too. Look for unscented, mild syndets, not soap. A bar cleanser should take only dirt and unwanted grease with it, leaving our acid mantle intact to keep our skin protected. The best test is to cleanse and rinse your face and wait five minutes. If you feel that tight feeling, you're using the wrong bar.
Final verdict: WIth published pH levels right on the packaging, you can feel confident that the Juju and the Pekee bars will thoroughly cleanse without stripping the skin. Knowing that the other products won't work if the bars are drying I vigorously tested the formulations working back and forth with our chemists until they were perfect. Further to that, the ingredients are safe and non-irritating. No fragrance or essential oils are allowed, ever.
the myth Refined oils are better than unrefined.
Refined oils are put through a bleaching/deodorizing and filtering process that along with it goes much of the nutrient value found in unrefined. Also, refined is usually "cut" with less expensive oils to make it more cost-effective. No thank you very much.
Final verdict: With unrefined oil, you know you are getting the nutrient-dense oil in its purest form. Will it change color and odor overtime? Maybe, but we think our gorgeous Virgin Marula won't be around long enough for you to notice. If you can't tell whether or not your favorite oil is unrefined, just ask. Companies should be, and often are, transparent about these things.
PS - Shop the entire Drunk Elephant collection here!