The Truth Fairy
During pregnancy, due to hormonal changes and also increased circulation, skin often becomes drier and more sensitive. Synthetic fragrances, colourants, detergents and other artificial additives that a woman’s skin previously tolerated may now irritate. Our sense of smell also becomes heightened during pregnancy and mums often steer away from overpowering synthetic fragrances.
Mums-to-be start thinking about what their bodies are absorbing, and want to avoid artificial preservatives especially parabens which are linked to a whole list of health concerns. Once they enter our systems, our bodies cannot process them or get rid of them, so they accumulate in little pockets and we don’t really know about the long-term effects. It is still a question of debate exactly what chemicals can affect the foetus, either during development or once fully formed. However, it is now widely accepted in the scientific world that bio accumulative and persistent chemicals are more likely to be present in a foetus. For example there has been some research into the presence of phthalates in newborn and very young babies.
Many products claim to be natural but are far from it. They get away with it because the criteria for natural and organic cosmetics are not legally defined. So how do we know which products are truly natural? Mums can look out for the NATRUE logo on packs, even when they are abroad, for the reassurance that NATRUE-certified products are authentically natural or organic, and 100% genuine.
First founded in 2007, NATRUE provides an established worldwide cosmetics and skin care standard which is driven by a desire to promote integrity and transparency in the natural cosmetics marketplace. The NATRUE label was set up as an international kitemark to help consumers identify products that are genuinely organic and natural, wherever they are in the world. Just one logo – the mark of true quality and authenticity. So consumers can see at a glance whether a product is totally natural, and know that the ingredients will be top quality and free from artificial colours, fragrances and preservatives.
You can find NATRUE-certified products all over the world. There is a wealth of choice in Europe – the UK, Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France, Belgium, Sweden, Poland, Austria, Denmark – because the original founding companies that inspired NATRUE were European, including green beauty pioneers Weleda, Dr. Hauschka, Lavera, Logona and Primavera. There are also NATRUE-certified products from the USA (such as Dr. Bronner Magic Soaps), Australia and New Zealand (like Trilogy). To date there are nearly 2,900 NATRUE-certified products from more than 100 brands – established names as well as up-and-coming young businesses like Cornish brand Beyond Organics, the first company to be NATRUE-certified right here in Britain.
The NATRUE kitemark is not just about naturalness or organic standards, it is also an assurance for the consumer that a product or ingredient is green in other ways: free from genetically-modified ingredients, and free from paraffin oils or petroleum-derived ingredients. Issues which often begin to matter more to us when we become parents for the first time, and we start to think of the wellbeing of the planet and the legacy we are leaving our children.
Uniquely, NATRUE stands for transparency, not just for members and industry insiders, but for consumers too. Products are listed on a publicly accessible website and database which can be used as a check list.
Look out for the NATRUE logo. It is your guarantee that the products you buy for you and your baby are as natural as they can be! For more about NATRUE standards and brands, go to www.natrue.org.