Halloween and Christmas may be fast approaching (yay!), but that’s not the only reason we’re excited about September. Or rather, what has been deemed ‘Organic September’ by the Soil Association - a whole month dedicated to celebrating all things organic. You can guess why it’s our favourite month of the year!
Part of championing an organic lifestyle – from farming methods, to food and textile – is of course, going organic in beauty – which we’ve been advocating since Content opened in 2008. Soil Association is also championing this via their Organic Beauty Week from September 14th to 20th, which aims to bring clarity about what really goes into your beauty products with a #CampaignForClarity. Because remember – not all products which are deemed ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ actually are – it may have just one organic ingredient added to a long list of synthetics (a practice referred to as green-washing) for it to be considered ‘organic’. Not cool!
The quickest and easiest way to identify a true organic product (until you get up to speed on ready ingredients lists) is to look for products with legitimate certification kite marks, from the likes of the Soil Association or their COSMOS partners. This ensures detailed requirements on ingredients and manufacturing processes have been met, meaning the quality and values of ‘organic’ are preserved. If you’re looking to make the switch to organic living and organic beauty, there really is no better time. Also, check out Soil Association’s website for their 30 simple tips to switch to organic – small changes that make a big difference. Finally, don't miss our pick of events for the month - take a look at our guide here.
So without further ado, here are our research-approved reasons for going organic:
FOOD - Eating organic is good for you and the environment: Think of it this way: the organic food you consume comes from a soil that is richer in minerals and less laden with potentially harmful pesticides (over 320 and counting). Plus, because organic farming bans the use of artificial fertilisers and favours the use of compost instead, the food you are consuming is cleaner, more wholesome and nutritious (proven fact!). But don't take our word for it - all organic farms and food companies are inspected for standard compliance.
Same goes with your meat: organic animals are free range, so happier, healthier and reared - without the routine use of antibiotics which are commonly used in livestock farming to make the animals grow faster. Beauty comes from within – so think of it as a #skinfood investment. We know what you’re thinking – it can be expensive. But there are ways around it! Read this article for tips to eat organic food on a budget and we think meat should be considered a treat rather than a three times a day, everyday essential.
And did you know that eating organic can also help combat climate change? Organic farming methods offer the best, currently available, practical model for addressing climate-friendly food production – if it were common practice in the UK, we could offset at least 23% of UK agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions through soil carbon sequestration alone! So you are helping support your body, the environment and the businesses who favour ‘clean’ and transparent farming methods.
CLOTHING - Wearing organic, ethical fashion is good for wildlife, animals and people: Let’s not beat around the bush: we know that ‘organic’ cotton instantly conjures up images of uncovetable and rather un-fashioney clothing which you probably don't want to wear. But one only needs to take a look at the likes of stores like Reformation, The Acey and Reve en Vert to see that environmentally friendly clothing is really coming into its own and knocking out some chic and fashionable collections that wouldn’t look amiss in any fashionista’s closets. So that settles the style VS substance conundrum.
So now you know they look good, here’s why they do good: just like food, organic fibres are grown with natural fertilisers such as compost and manure which protect the land, the farmer and wearer as they use up 60% less water than conventional cotton farming. On the contrary, conventional cotton farming uses up 10 per cent of all agricultural chemicals and 25 percent of the world’s insecticides. These toxins cause serious health issues for farmers, cotton pickers and us, as they ultimately end up in our water supply.
Our wellbeing favours from organic cotton too – organic clothing does not contain allergenic, carcinogenic or toxic chemicals, so will not off-gas chemicals or dyes onto your body. As organic cotton is hypoallergenic, it won’t cause irritation or allergies – a good choice for the more sensitive, allergy prone skin-types.
Finally, wearing organic clothing is an ethical choice that supports the farmers: roughly 20,000 cotton workers die each year from chemical contamination according to the World Health Organisation. Social conditions are higher in organic textile factories, so organic cotton production can help farmers find a way out of poverty. Plus, avoiding pesticides reduces production costs and farmer debts, as the plants become self sufficient. It’s a no-brainer! Look out for the Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS) Soil Association symbol when you’re buying textiles. We recommend the film ‘The True Cost’ if you haven’t seen it yet, a real eye opener on the subject.
BEAUTY – Going organic is an investment for your beauty, health and wellbeing. It also helps support small batch, beauty artisans: We’ve saved our favourite for last! As you can imagine, we can wax lyrical about this one. But that’s what our blog and store is for – FYI you can find out more about our ethos here - so we’ll try and keep it short: your skin is the largest organ of your body and what you put on it can be absorbed in tiny amounts. So choosing organic beauty is more than skin deep, it’s a health choice too. To make it easier for you, we’ve listed all our SA certified products in one place and put together an amazing limited-edition kit featuring some of our SA certified beauty essentials including: a SKIN & TONIC 30ml Naked Oil (new & exclusive), Pai Skincare 10ml Instant Calm Moisturiser and Lotus & Orange Toner, Therapi Honey Skincare 30ml Orange Blossom Cleanser, Intelligent Nutrients 100ml Destress Hand Therapy, Essence Of Eden Mini coconut Oils, Nourish Organic Skincare Mini Kale Cleanser & Mini Kale Eye Cream. Plus Raw Gorilla Munchies! Grab yourself a kit here while you can. Find out more about the labelling of organic cosmetics here.
For more weekly insight into organic beauty, don’t miss our weekly Green Edits in the Daily Telegraph!
To coincide with Organic Beauty Week, we’re giving away a free gift with your SA-certified organic beauty purchases: a limited-edition kit featuring some of our organic beauty favourites! It’s the perfect introduction to organic beauty. Get it here. We’ve also got some exciting new releases from London-based home grown organic beauty brand SKIN & TONIC – and an exciting gift with purchase! Check them out here.