Every day, we use soaps and body washes, creams, lotions, makeup and other products, one on top of the other, to make ourselves look prettier (or more handsome), younger, erase blemishes, smell better, feel sexier and to attract, or keep, the perfect partner. Looking well-groomed and attractive is important. It's good for your self esteem too. But not all the ingredients in the products that make you beautiful and sexier are good for your health.

The cosmetic and personal care product industry is a multi-billion dollar a year industry ... and growing. New products are coming onto the market every day. Manufacturers play to your emotions in their advertising and packaging, frequently misrepresenting products as healthy which really are NOT.

With the fast growing interest in natural and organic skin and body care products, companies that typically manufacture the mainstream products containing synthetic ingredients and chemical preservatives, are coming onboard the organic bandwagon.

Natural and organic standards that were once noticeably absent now abound. Instead of no certifying agencies for cosmetics and skin care products, there are currently several. But not all organic certifying organizations abide by the same organic standards. Mainstream companies, trying to get their piece of the organic pie have developed their own lower organic standards, allowing synthetic chemicals and preservatives, not allowed by the true organic standards.

Talk about confusing! If you were confused before, you may be even more bewildered now.

If a label says certified organic, you need to ask by whom? If it doesn't have a large and well visible USDA Certified Organic logo, you need to check the product ingredients carefully.

Now, I'm not saying that all products that are not USDA Certified Organic are bad. You just have to be more meticulous in checking out the ingredients and the integrity of the company before purchasing these products.

What does the integrity of the company have to do with the ingredients?

Even natural ingredients vary in quality. And some ingredients may contain contaminants or be composed of ingredients. So 100% of all the individual ingredients are not always listed on the label. Also, there are some ingredients that have a generic name to protect "trade secrets." So, you can probably see here that there is potential for misrepresentation of the safety and healthfulness of the ingredients in your natural and organic skin and body care products.

When you choose your body care products from a company that's committed to using the purest, safest and healthiest ingredients in their products, you can feel confident that what you're using on your skin is good for you.

How do you find out about a company's commitment to the health and safety of their products?

It's a matter of research. You can do it yourself or find someone who has already done it!

Search for companies that produce natural and organic cosmetics, skin and body care products. First check the ingredients in their products to make sure they're all safe and healthy. After the ingredients pass the test, investigate the company. What is their mission? What are they committed to? Do they also produce product lines that contain synthetic ingredients and chemical preservatives? Or are they committed to using only the purest and safest ingredients in all their products? Are they careful about the quality of ingredients they receive from their suppliers?

This sounds like a lot of work ... and it is.

There is an easier way ...

Find a resource where that work has already been done for you. Dying To Look Good "Best Brands" gives you lists of products that have been thoroughly investigated for ingredient safety from companies committed to producing the safest and healthiest cosmetics, skin and body care products on the market today.

So you can choose to do the research yourself, or take the easy way and benefit from research that's already been done.

Author's Bio: 

© 2009 Christine H. Farlow, D.C., "The Ingredients Investigator" and author of Dying To Look Good "Best Brands" where you'll find lists of the safest and healthiest skin and body care products on the market. Information about ingredient safety is at DyingToLookGood.com.