Are ‘Organic’ and ‘Natural’ Hair Products Really Effective?

The organic personal care products industry has grown substantially in recent years. In fact a fairly recent report published by Transparency Market Research has forecast this market to grow globally by an annual rate of over 9.6%.

While consumer concerns regarding health, the environment and animal rights, continue to fuel this growth, mass market penetration is really dependent upon whether or not organic products are able to live up to consumer expectations and deliver the same results that their synthetic counterparts do.

The reality is that not everyone is overly health conscious. Many people will utilise questionable or unhealthy beauty procedures to achieve a perceived, often temporary beauty benefit. Think Botox or sunbed tanning. An even smaller segment of the overall market is even remotely concerned about the environment, or animal rights and testing, as the implications of these remain out of sight and difficult to perceive for many people.

So what tangible benefit will all consumers derive from opting for products which contain fewer synthetic ingredients and more natural ones?

Whether we are interested in our health, the environment and animal rights or not, at the end of the day, we all want shiny, soft hair that is tangle free and healthy looking. We want to experience for ourselves the promises that marketers constantly punt.

The reality is that you definitely can achieve some measure of success with synthetic hair colour, care and styling products, however the advantages of gentler, more natural options tend on all fronts, to far outweigh the synthetic options.

Professionally formulated organic and natural hair products are mostly better than synthetics

Organic products, or those that have been formulated using natural ingredients can be highly effective, however many brands make the mistake of relying far too much on the popular terms ‘organic’ and ‘natural’. Stating that a product is natural or organic is simply not good enough. The ingredients and moreover the results, are what really matter.

As with any professional brand and product, it is the manufacturer’s knowledge of the product that is being developed, as well as the thorough, scientific research and testing of the product on human beings, that proves its efficacy.

A truly professional brand in the personal care and cosmetics industry, will seek to remain entirely open and upfront about ingredients and their impact, and will have the ability to accurately disclose and prove, not only the intended beauty result, but the long term overall benefit of using their products.

While synthetic brands often require animal testing, as they can be dangerous to human health, products containing natural and organic, plant based ingredients very rarely do, as they are mostly safe for our use.
The common misconception that non-synthetic products are somehow inferior is not founded when it comes to professional brands such as Organic Colour Systems.

When professional testing and scientifically determined formulations form the basis of a professional product, with thorough testing and long-term experience to back-up claims, the additional benefits of using safer, cleaner more effective products, become glaringly obvious.

So why choose natural or organic hair products over synthetic ones?

Long term health: Perhaps the one key advantage of natural and organic hair colour, styling and hair care ranges, is the fact that the positive results you will experience are far more likely to be long lasting. Instead of using silicones and waxes to mask an underlying problem, products such as those found in the Organic Colour Systems range, actually promote the genuinely good, long term health of your hair.

Manageable hair: It has been proven repeatedly that hair responds better to gentler, more natural products. Whereas synthetic hair products tend to leave the cuticle layer of the hair open, resulting in dull, dry and frizzy hair; a well-balanced product containing more nutritious natural ingredients, will leave the hair cuticle closed and optimise the natural PH of the hair, leaving hair more manageable and naturally healthy.

Shiny, soft locks: Apart from ensuring that you drink enough water, moisture loss – the key component to dry, dull hair – can be avoided by using products that are kind to the scalp and hair. Synthetic hair products are more likely to irritate the scalp which will result in an overproduction of sebum, or oil, which most people will be inclined to manage by increased washing. This creates a vicious cycle. In addition, the harsh chemicals that are found in most commercial hair colour, can be severely irritating and damaging to the scalp and are known to irreparably damage the hair shaft.

Hair colour, styling and hair care products that are free from harsh chemicals, ammonia and sulphates, and which contain a scientifically formulated blend of gentle, natural, plant based ingredients have been proven to nourish both the scalp and the hair shaft, resulting in softer, shinier hair with an optimal balance of moisture.

Increased body: The gentler the product, the more your hair will be able to defy gravity. Shampoos laden with sulphates, and hair colouring products laced with harsh chemicals, tend to weigh down hair while stripping it of moisture. This results in limp, dull and dry hair. In addition, synthetic, or petrochemical waxes and silicones tend to build up on the hair, making it heavy and lifeless. Natural products which have been correctly formulated, gently cleanse hair, ensuring that moisture is locked in, while foreign residues, dust and dirt is removed. Natural hair colour products actually promote good scalp health, and contain ingredients which feed the hair, resulting in a plumped up, yet smooth hair shaft, which all contributes to increased body and shine.

Longer lasting colour: Sulphate free shampoos that have been carefully formulated using gentle, more natural and organic ingredients, such as the Organic Colour Systems range, are less detrimental to treated hair than synthetic shampoos which contain sulphates. Sulphates strip away natural oils, as well as hair dye which results in hair being more prone to damage and breakage, while accelerating colour fade in colour treated hair. In addition, most permanent hair dyes open the cuticle of the hair to enable the colour to change, but in most cases, don’t allow the cuticle to close again, which results in coarse hair with an accelerated loss of pigment. Gentler permanent hair dyes that have been designed to preserve the delicate protein and moisture balance of the hair, such as Organic Colour Systems, do the opposite, by improving shine and texture, while increasing fade resistance. This is explained in more detail here.

The additional benefits…

No one could with any honesty profess that synthetic products are good for your health. While in low concentrations, chemicals and synthetic ingredients may not be immediately detrimental to health, they can be when stylists and their clients suffer repeated exposure to them.

Natural, plant based ingredients can also cause adverse side effects, however the likelihood of this is rare when professional brands such as Organic Colour Systems use tried and tested safe ingredients, and thorough testing methods.

Promotes better health: The human body is a delicate ecosystem, which if out of balance, will react by becoming ill. Whatever we eat and expose ourselves to, could potentially disrupt this balance and will have an impact on our health, which is one of the key reasons why choosing products which contain ingredients that are gentler and kinder to our hair and skin, will promote health rather than endanger us.

Kinder to the environment: While synthetic products are very rarely harmless to the environment – both during production of ingredients and use in end products – natural and organic ingredients and products are manufactured using environmentally sensitive methods and do not contaminate the environment or water systems.

Supports animal welfare: Few individuals are able to stomach the sight of an animal which has suffered burns, eruptions and disfigurement as a result of cosmetic testing. Because natural and organic ingredients are known to be safe, animal testing is never required. When testing is done, it is done on human beings, which results in far more accurate findings.

Beware of Greenwashing

Greenwashing (which is the practice of making ‘green’ or ‘eco-friendly’ claims and not living up to them) is a major problem in the market with numerous brands unscrupulously advertising their products as ‘natural’ or ‘organic’. In recent years however, various local and international regulatory bodies and standards have emerged, to assist consumers in choosing genuinely natural or organic products. More information regarding the various organic seals can be found HERE.

About Organic Colour Systems

Organic Colour Systems uses the maximum amount of certified organic ingredients and the minimum amount of chemicals in our product formulations.
Our system works to ensure optimal protein levels in hair – the foundation to healthy hair – as well as maintain the natural PH level of hair. This results in naturally smooth, shiny hair which is easier to manage and permanent hair colour which looks richer and more vibrant, and is less prone to fading.

For a list of natural and organic ingredients that our products contain, and a list of synthetic ingredients that we omit, click here for our Organic Colour Range and click here for our Organic Care Range.

In a nutshell, synthetic ingredients damage hair, whereas natural ingredients nourish hair. If you are looking for truly healthy, great looking hair, be sure to do your research and opt for professionally formulated products that contain the maximum organic, naturally derived ingredients, such as Organic Colour Systems. There is no doubt that your hair and body will thank you.