Organic - Vegan - Natural
Did you know that organic crops are up to 60% higher in antioxidants compared to non-organic?
Organic ingredients also have a higher count of vitamins, mineral salts, essential fatty and amino acids which are crucial for skin-cell function and repair. The principle of taking better care of the soil, our environment and ourselves by choosing Organic food and products, is something very close to my heart.
Feed your skin from the outside
The skin is our body’s largest organ, so it should come as no surprise that what we put on it matters. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) notes that the average person applies a dozen products, containing a total of 168 different ingredients, every day, crazy hey!?
Unfortunately though, the beauty industry still remains largely unregulated. Can you believe that cosmetics, which include skin-care products, don’t need any approval from the Food and Drug Administration before hitting the shops. This is exactly why I chose to only use certified organic and natural ingredients in the BAO formulations, as so many brands don’t.
There are a few ingredients that tend to spark more skin sensitivity than others. These usually include artificial fragrances, parabens, phthalates, sulphates, mineral oil and formaldehyde — some of which are added as preservatives. So I make sure that BAO Skincare does not contain them. Some sensitive skins can even be irritated by essential oils, but the oils I have chosen suit each product perfectly and are only used in small percentages in the face products.
So, to make it more easy and simple for you, below is a list of all ingredients used in BAO Skincare (*indicates certified organic ingredients). I have explained what the ingredient is and why it is so good for your skin, but if you ever have any questions regarding skincare ingredients in BAO or other brands, please email me.
Apricot Kernel (Organic)
Apricot Oil is extracted from the apricot kernel. It is pale golden and odourless, and it is suited for all skin types. It's a good source of bioactive compounds such as tocopherols and phytosterols. Tocopherols and phytosterols are antioxidant-rich emollients naturally found in vegetables (and in this case, fruit oils) that hydrate, protect the skin against environmental damages (aka free radicals), and keep the skin supple.
Argan oil is a plant oil extracted from the kernels of the fruit pit of the argan tree (aka Argania spinosa) which grows in Morocco. Traditionally, the oil extraction is a cold-pressed process—it’s done by exerting mechanical pressure with little to no applied heat. However, the growing popularity and demand for argan oil has led to industrialised extraction methods which utilise solvents. Though argan oil is most known for being particularly beneficial to dry, dull skin, it has also been considered for acne as it is considered non-comedogenic and won’t leave the skin feeling greasy. It is not only safe, but can also be beneficial to all skin types, especially dry, reactive and irritated skins.
We're willing to bet avocados already play a major role in your everyday life. Whether you eat the creamy green goodness on toast or cook with its oil, the uses of avocado are far from limited. As it turns out, avocado oil is just as impressive when applied topically as it is when you eat it. And if avocado is the magical fruit, consider avocado oil the magical juice. As if you weren't already obsessed with avocados enough, we're here to give you even more reason to love it.
When it comes to skincare ingredients, aloe vera has truly made a name for itself. Got a sunburn? Everyone from your colleague to your grandmother will recommend slathering on aloe vera. Struggling with dry skin? Aloe vera. Raving testimonials of its healing properties can be found across cultures throughout history, but with so much praise going around it can be difficult to differentiate the true miracle from the myth.
While beauty trends may come and go, many are rooted in centuries of routine. That's certainly the case with Baobab, a powerful ingredient with a lengthy history. Often referred to as the “tree of life,” the baobab tree is native to Africa, and the nickname certainly makes sense, considering that a single tree may live for over 500 years. Part of its appeal is that the pulp of baobab fruit—extracted from baobab pods and then transformed into raw powder—has been a favourite ingredient in wellness and beauty treatments for many years.
The perfect creamy alternative to the non vegan beeswax. Berry Wax is 100% vegetable-based, so it’s vegan friendly and is also certified Kosher and Halal friendly. Harvested from the fruits of the Sumac Tree, the wax is extracted by hot water from the skin of the fruit and further refined by filtration and absorption method. A much more planet friendly wax than candelilla wax too. Berry wax is much more creamy and less drying than Candiellal wax, it’s what gives products that buttery soft texture. Featured in Nourish Overnight Mask and Skin Saviour Balm
Although it's most widely known as benzyl alcohol, it can also be known as benzenemethanol or phenylcarbinol. It's derived from fruit, comes in the form of a colourless liquid, and has a slightly sweet scent. As a multifunctional ingredient, you can spot benzyl alcohol on the ingredient label of many different skincare products. You’ll find Benzyl Alcohol in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
If you’re trying to calm reactive, inflamed skin, or perhaps you're experiencing redness and flushing or a hormonal acne flare-up. Calendula is the ingredient for you. Calendula oil is made by infusing marigold flowers in a carrier oil. This amazing multitasker is being added to skincare products that are designed to give your skin a bit of TLC and nourishment.
Chamomile Water (Organic)
When setting yourself up for a good night's rest, chamomile tea is a surefire way to instil a sense of calm before bedtime. In fact, chamomile tea was also historically used by Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans to treat wounds and promote healing. Just as chamomile helps calm the mind and body, it has similar effects on the skin.
Cane Sugar (Organic)
Containing glycolic acid, a natural alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), cane sugar works to slough off dead skin cells and make way for healthier, glowing skin to show through. Glycolic acid is the smallest hydroxyl acid molecule, so can penetrate the deepest and fastest. Because of this, it is known to be the most effective at stimulating collagen and this will make the skin of your body soft and supple. The resurfacing element helps to correct any sun damage or pigmentation and smooth the surface of the skin, whilst also fighting against millia (little white bumps on arms) acne and blemishes. Also being a natural humectant and antioxidant, sugar absorbs moisture from the environment and binds it to your skin, keeping it plump and hydrated, so well protected against toxins and any harsh weather. I chose to use Cane Sugar over Salt as it is less drying on the skin and salt is better absorbed by using in a bath rather than being washed down the plug hole. Featured in Luminosity Body Scrub
Cocamidopropyl betaine (CAPB) is a chemical compound found in many washes. CAPB is a surfactant, which means that it interacts with water, making the molecules slippery so they don’t stick together. When water molecules don’t stick together, they are more likely to bond with dirt and oil so when you rinse away the cleaning product, the dirt rinses away, too. In some products, CAPB is the ingredient that makes lather, without any sign of nasty SLS’s! Cocamidopropyl betaine is a synthetic fatty acid made from coconuts, so products that are considered “natural” can contain this chemical. You can find Coco Betaine in Brightening Hand + Body Wash and Refreshing Face Wash.
Camellia seed oil has been used for culinary, ornamental, cosmetic, and medicinal purposes for over a century. Otherwise known as “white tea” seed oil thanks to the leaves producing the majority of caffeinated teas enjoyed around the world, it's a staple crop for both the food and beauty industry and is one of the four oil-bearing trees alongside coconut, olive, and palm. In skincare, it's famed for being a beauty elixir of Japan's geishas, who use it instead of water to cleanse their face.
Cetyl alcohol is what helps prevent creams from separating into oil and liquid. It’s a white, waxy substance made from cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol, both fatty alcohols. The one in BAO is made from coconuts and they help create smoother creamy creams. You can find Cetyl Alcohol in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
Citric Acid is an alpha/beta hydroxy acid found naturally in citrus fruits such as lemons and limes. In skincare formulations, Citric Acid has protective antioxidant, and corrective anti ageing effects helping to reverse visible signs of photodamage. The Citric Acid percentage in BAO’s washes is around 0.03%. Citric Acid works by exfoliating the upper layer of dead skin cells to help clean pores, even skin tone and soften and smooth the skin. AHAs can also be used as pH adjusters. pH adjusters are ingredients added to products to ensure they are mild and non-irritating – not too acidic (low pH) or too basic (high pH). Most recently, Citric Acid has also been found to be important in healthy skin barrier function by maintaining the optimum level of pH in areas of the skin which are essential for normal skin barrier function. You can find Citric Acid in : Brightening Hand + Body Wash and Refreshing Face Wash.
Perhaps one of the most glorified supermarket beauty solutions, coconut oil has become both a pantry and bathroom staple for many. However, with studies arguing the oil's health benefits when consumed orally,1 you may be left reconsidering the elixir's topical effectiveness, too. But you shouldn't rush to throw away your favourite jar just yet. The truth is: Coconut oil is good for your skin because of its natural antibacterial and moisture-retention properties, but it may increase breakouts in acne-prone skin. So regardless of its nutritional content, whether coconut oil is the all-natural solution to soothe your dry skin or not is entirely based on your dermis.
Cocoa Butter (Organic)
Cocoa butter may sound (and smell) like a scrumptious ingredient, but it's actually much, much more. It's an absolute moisturising powerhouse for treating a myriad of beauty concerns from dry skin to stretch marks and scars. A little background: Cocoa butter comes from the cacao bean, which is found inside the cocoa pod, which grows on the cacao tree. The cocoa pod is a large, gourd-shaped fruit; inside the pod are 30 to 40 cocoa seeds. After these seeds are dried, roasted, and pressed, the vegetable fat is extracted from the beans— you can even do it at home if you want.
Decyl Glucoside is a very popular ingredient these days because it comes from coconuts, so it's natural, and it's also biodegradable. You'll commonly find it used as a detergent/cleanser and sometimes it's labelled ambiguously as "non-ionic surfactant" which means that it has a neutral (no) charge, and it lowers the surface tension of water. Decyl Glucoside is obtained from 100% renewable raw materials, through a combination of plant based fatty alcohol, decanal which is derived from coconut and glucose. Decyl Glucoside is a mild, and gentle, surfactant and because it does not dry the skin it is ideal for the formulation of personal hygiene and toiletry products. It helps wash foam, but is always gentle and mild, especially suited for dry and sensitive skins. You can find Citric Acid in Brightening Hand + Body Wash and Refreshing Face Wash.
Athletes commonly use it for sore muscles while gardeners sprinkle it on plants to increase their growth. We’re talking about Epsom salt, of course. Epsom salt has a long history of diversified use and benefits for health, beauty, household cleaning and outdoor gardening.
Frankincense oil has been used for thousands of years for its therapeutic and healing properties as part of the practice of aromatherapy. Frankincense, sometimes referred to as olibanum, is a common type of essential oil used in aromatherapy that can offer a variety of health benefits, including helping relieve chronic stress and anxiety, reducing pain and inflammation, and boosting immunity.
What does Geranium smell like? If you crush a geranium leaf between your fingers, you'll smell citrus and fruity accents with a hint of spice and a rose smell of course! Generally, for its scent, geranium is often mistaken for 'the other' rose but with a less powdery and more lemony, herbaceous aroma, with a soft but potent warm green scent.
What does Grapefruit smell like? It has a fresh, tangy scent that is similar to that of lime, but sweeter. Vitamin C’s skin benefits are praised for good reason. Citrus essential oils are an alternative to vitamin C serums with many of the same skin benefits. Grapefruit essential oil is known for its healing properties and as a natural remedy for healthy, clear skin. The oil is extracted from a grapefruit peel through a process called cold-pressing.
As a sugar alcohol, glycerin draws moisture from the surrounding environment and pulls it into the skin. Because of its role as a top-notch hydrator, it is the second most used ingredient used in skincare products. Glycerine is an excellent skin softener. It is humectant, which means it attracts water from the atmosphere into the skin, which ensures hydration. BAO only uses Organic vegetable-based glycerine. Featured in Recovery Face CReam, Radiance Face Scrub and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
Pink Himalayan salt is often said to be the most beneficial as well as the cleanest salt available on this planet today. It has all kinds of nutritional and therapeutic properties, not to mention culinary Himalayan pink salt uses. Himalayan salt minerals are very impressive. Pink Himalayan sea salt can contain over 84 minerals and trace elements, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper and iron, so it does more than just make your food taste better.
Not a dangerous “acid”. It’s a natural plant sugar. Nicknamed the “fountain of youth”as it has incredible hydrating properties. Results in increased skin smoothness, softening and decreased wrinkles. As we age the natural hyaluronic acid declines in our skin. Skin becomes dehydrated and the collagen and elastin fibres lose their structure. Hyaluronic acid applied to the skin, can re-establish the hyaluronic acid content to a more youthful level. Featured in Recovery Face Cream, Recovery Face Mask and Hydrating Face Mist
Not all skincare oils are created equal, and not every oil can work for every skin type. That being said, jojoba oil comes close. From hydration to acne benefits, this lightweight oil works on every skin type and can be used with almost every product on your vanity.
The liquid wax ester of the Jojoba plant can be turned into spherical jojoba beads. The word "jojoba" is pronounced as "hohoba". Jojoba beads are one of the best options for gentle exfoliators. Whilst the particles used in most exfoliating scrubs can vary from ground seeds and kernels which are scratchy and usually too rough for the skin or even plastic microbeads which are of course dangerous to our oceans. Jojoba beads are super popular due to being naturally sourced and really gentle for the skin. Featured in Radiance Face Scrub
A natural plant based acid, usually from corn, which helps to balance formulations and fight infection. It’s not really adding any benefits to our skin but essentially it ensures your product doesn’t spoil or cause infection to the skin with nasty bacteria from regular contact and use. It’s particularly important in products that don’t use pumps to dispense so look out for this in products sold in jars or bottles. Sodium Levulinate is the salt of levulinic acid and is used as a preservative. You can find Levulinic acid in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
What does Lavender smell like? Lavender has a delicate, sweet smell that is floral, herbal, and evergreen woodsy at the same time. It has soft, powdery, or smokey notes as well. As far as essential oils go, lavender oil undoubtedly reigns supreme. The increase in popularity is mainly due to its floral and herbal scent that has relaxed the mind thanks to its aromatherapeutic properties, which is why it's featured in countless candles, pillow mists, and oil diffusers. We love a calming scent, but we love it even more when it has calming skin care benefits, too.
Macadamia Nut Oil
Macadamia nuts are large bland white nuts from Australia, not the most tasty to eat, but in your skincare……that’s another story! The Australian Macadamia nut is something that your skin will truly enjoy. Did you know that 70% of the world’s supply of macadamia comes from the small Queensland town of Gympie. They are native to Australia and found in southern Queensland and Northern New South Wales.
An emulsion is a blend of water and oil, which are brought together by the use of an emulsifier – creating a homogenous blend. MF is added to the water part of the cream and this allows the oil and water to stay together, creating a beautiful creamy texture. It is 100% plant based. You can find MF Emulsifier in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
May Chang (Organic)
May Chang has the most uplifting scent of all. A fresh, intensely lemon fragrance with fruity and spicy undertones. For many people, the aroma brings back happy memories of sherbet-lemon sweets! May Chang essential oil is fast becoming a ‘go to’ when sourcing the perfect oil for relaxation and wellbeing. A key staple in your essential oil collection, May Chang is known as the ‘happy oil’ and one which promotes tranquillity and inner calm.
Kaolin clay is considered to be one of the gentlest facial clays. It has kaolinite, a mineral that consists of layered silicate. While the mineral is found all over the world, it has been mined at the Kao-ling mountain (China) since ages. Kaolin clay is suitable for almost all types of skin, especially sensitive skin. It mostly comes in white colour, but can also be pink, green or brown. Experts suggest that whiter the colour of Kaolin clay, the better its quality is. We use the white clay. Absorbs Extra Oil Kaolin clay absorbs extra oil from your skin’s surface, thereby keeping your pores unclogged. It only controls the excess sebum production on your skin surface and does not affect its natural oil level. Soothes Your Skin Kaolin clay has soothing qualities that can calm your irritated skin caused by external or internal factors. It has mild healing properties that help to soothe any type of irritation and redness on your skin. Evens Out Your Skin Tone This clay stimulates your skin cells and makes your skin tone even. If you use it regularly, you may see a noticeable change in your skin tone. Featured in Luminosity Body Scrub, Healing Bath Salts and Recovery Face Mask.
Red Mandarin (Organic)
When making the BAO products I love to open the bottle of Mandarin oil and just breathe it in! Even though it’s the mildest of citrus fruits, mandarin smells sweet, juicy, and tangy with notes of candied orange and a delicate floral, neroli-like undertone. With its sweet and intense aroma, so characteristic of citrus fruit, red mandarin oil is the sweetest in the family of citrus essential oils. The fruit being native to China, mandarin oil is a key element in traditional herbal medicines. This intensely flavored essential oil is cold pressed from the peel of mandarin oranges. The refreshing taste and aroma of mandarin makes it an obvious choice for food production in sweets, ice-cream and carbonated drinks. It’s also a popular addition to colognes, perfumes and cosmetics for its uplifting and fresh-smelling scent. Featured in Luminosity Body Scrub, Brightening Hand + Body Cream, Brightening Hand + Body Wash and Radiance Face Scrub.
Neroli has a beautiful light sweet-floral fragrance with an element of citrus. It is said to have a refreshing, honeyed floral aroma. It is commonly used as a top note in modern fragrances. Perfumers highly prize neroli oil for its ability to blend well with various citrus oils, floral absolutes, and most of the synthetic components available on the market.
Orange Floral Water (Organic)
Orange Blossom Water is derived from steam distillation of the Fragrant White Flowers of the Bitter Orange Tree. The intoxicating smell of the Orange Blossoms is reminiscent of summers along the Mediterranean Coast of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. Orange Blossom Water (also known as Neroli) is one of the standout ingredients in the Foods, Teas, Coffees, Deserts of the Middle East and Mediterranean Region.
Pomegranate Seed (Organic)
Pomegranates are stunning scarlet fruits filled with juicy, succulent kernels. Their unique beauty is only rivalled by their health and beauty benefits. Pomegranate oil nourishes our skin with its massive store of vitamin C – one of the biggest vitamins in skin care. Pomegranate offers regenerative, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-aging properties that promote bouncy, glowing skin. Once you find out the endless beauty benefits of pomegranate oil for skin, you’ll wonder why you didn’t incorporate this mega oil in your skin care routine sooner.
Prickly Pear Seed (Organic)
The Power of Prickly Pear Seed Oil Compared to other nutrient-dense ingredients, Prickly Pear seed oil is bursting with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids. The composition within the seeds makes for a great treatment for all skin types and it doesn't irritate, making it a great choice for even the most sensitive skins. Despite its name, Prickly Pear seed oil is actually a super soothing ingredient that benefits the skin – and it all starts with a cactus! The opuntia (sometimes called bunny ear because of its cute growth pattern) is a desert plant that has long been a staple in Mexico and the Caribbean islands.
Other trade names include Mikrokill ECT, Geogard ECT and Plantaserv M. INCI: Benzyl Alcohol (and) Salicylic Acid (and) Glycerin (and) Sorbic Acid (Meets Ecocert and COSMOS Standards). A broad spectrum preservative which contains four different components: Benzyl Alcohol, Salicylic Acid, Glycerin and Sorbic Acid. These molecules are all found in nature in plants such as pine resin, rowan berries and willow bark. It is a non-paraben, non-formaldehyde, non-isothiazolone based preservative system. It is supposed to have a wide pH compatibility of pH 3-8, but it’s most effective at pH below 5.5. You can find Preservative Eco in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
Rose Water (Organic)
I wish you could smell the big 25 litre Rose Water bottles I use when making the BAO products, as it’s the most delicious scent! Rose water has been used for thousands of years all over the world. Historians speculate the origin of this product to be in Persia (present-day Iran), but Rose Water plays a significant role in skin care stories worldwide. Roses have also been a representation of love and femininity for centuries, so it’s no wonder that it has become a major ingredient in many beauty rituals throughout the years. If you’re big into natural beauty, then Rose water is the way to go.
Rosehip oil is a pressed seed oil that has been valued since ancient times for its many healing properties, which makes it especially helpful for those with sensitive skin. Rosehip oil is derived from the small fruit that sits beneath the rose. It is a popular ingredient in skincare right now for its hydrating and anti-aging benefits. Rosehip oil has a host of benefits (more on those, below) but it is first and foremost an ultra-effective emollient and moisturizer: With high levels of essential fatty acids, especially omega-3 (linolenic acid) and omega-6 (linoleic acid), rosehip seed oil can effectively soften skin and improve skin barrier function.
Shea Butter (Organic)
If you have dry skin, you probably know that Shea Butter is one of the top moisturizing ingredients to use. But that's just one reason why Shea (pronounced shay) is frequently used in skin and hair care products. As an ingredient for skincare, especially in its natural and pure form, it has multiple benefits—from reducing premature facial lines and wrinkles to soothing skin conditions like eczema. We consulted experts for a full picture of the ingredient. Below you'll find more information on shea butter's many benefits, as well as several homemade beauty recipes you can make using the miracle ingredient.
This acid is a safe acid, it’s present in various fruits, but it is extracted from sorbellano fruit (sorbus aucuparia). Sorbic acid helps to preserve cosmetics and is found in the Preservative Eco used in BAO products containing water and oils, specifically reducing the development of yeast and fungi. You can find Sorbic Acid in Recovery Face Cream, Radiance Face Scrub, Recovery Face Mask and Brightening Hand + Body Cream
Sweet Orange (Organic)
Everyone’s favourite scent! Sweet Orange Essential Oil smells citrusy and sweet. Its aroma is similar to that of orange peels, but it typically smells sweeter and is more concentrated. Eating oranges provides a myriad of health benefits for your body. But using orange oil for skin can prove to be equally beneficial. Orange oil is an essential oil i.e it has a high concentration of volatile compounds. It is extracted via steam distillation of orange peel and has a pleasant, citrusy aroma. There are different varieties of orange oils used in skincare but the most commonly used varieties are sweet orange oil (Citrus Sinensis) and blood orange(Citrus Aurantium Dulcis) oil.
Benzoic acid salt that is naturally found in blueberries, prunes, cinnamon and apple. It is used as a skincare preservative to prevent the growth and proliferation of fungi and bacteria in the products.
Sodium Levulinate is a 100% natural preservative obtained from starch and vegetable inulin. It is a gentle preservative proven to be able to control microorganism colonies without altering the integrity, color or pH of other ingredients included in the final product. It is especially used in the preservation of fresh ingredients.
Sweet Almond (Organic)
It feels like we hear about almonds a lot these days, as they're one of the most popular dairy alternatives for all your latte needs. But did you know the nut has some major skin benefits too, helping to keep it supple and healthy. Almond oil is actually an age-old hero ingredient that ancient cultures used to treat dry skin and hypertrophic scars as well as rejuvenate skin overall.
Extracted from sodium salt from phytic acid, a vegetable compound found in corn. It is used in cosmetic products as a chelating agent to prevent the heavy metals.
Tamanu oil is derived from the seeds of the tamanu nut tree, a tropical evergreen native to Southeast Asia. While it has yet to become the 'it' ingredient in modern skin care, it's definitely not a newbie; it's been used medicinally for centuries by various Asian, African, and Pacific Island cultures, points out King. Tamanu oil has a noteworthy look and smell. In its purest form, it has a thick consistency, a dark green color, and a distinct deep, earthy, nutty scent (which admittedly may be off-putting to some).
Vitamin E is a very well known antioxidant vitamin and oil. It's often found in antioxidant blend topicals or moisturisers. Alpha-tocopherol (the form of vitamin E humans can metabolise) is typically produced synthetically but can be found in natural products as well. Avocado, pumpkin, and wheat germ oil are all great sources of the vitamin both for topical and internal uses.
What does Ylang Ylang smell like? The unique and powerful fragrance of ylang ylang is dreamy and romantic, featuring floral notes nuanced with aspects of creamy, balsamic and powdery custard, intoxicating jasmine, sweet, light and bitter neroli and sensual, sugary honey - delicious! It has a sedating and calming effect, and is useful in the treatment of depression, anxiety, stress and tension. It also has aphrodisiac properties. Due to its balancing action, it is suitable for both dry and oily skin types. Featured in Healing Bath + Body Oil and Healing Bath Salts