How to Choose and Use Organic Serums
There are so many oils and blends available that making the right selection for your personal skin and hair care needs can be dizzying - possibly to the point where you just say, "forget it!" That was me during my pregnancies and breastfeeding. I was committed to making safe choices, but overwhelmed by lengthy ingredient lists....so I just opted out.
Now, my mission is to simplify self-care.
An obsessively natural and intentionally simple ingredient list is a big deal to me, so the ingredient list is always where I recommend starting your quest for the perfect product. Maybe this is important to you because you're expecting a little one, or maybe you're simply expecting that products should be both natural AND effective. I get it.
For starters, oils and serums typically fall into 3 categories:
(3) Water-based oil blends, which will feature certain oils but dilute them to make them less expensive to produce and more accessible (using pure oils correctly involves a bit of a learning curve. See Using Oil to Moisturizer and The Oil Cleansing Method).
CLEARLY, I'm biased and only use the first two types of oil products. Any product with water (be it aloe water or rose water) will need a synthetic preservative to avoid microbial growth, along with a host of other questionable chemicals to emulsify and stabilize it. This is why all of our products are water-free, hence the company name, Paraguas ("umbrella").
Ok, soap-boxing done. Let's move on to the fun part 😊
If you’re going with pure oil, you only have good options in front of you (provided they’re also organic and cold-pressed). Oils are extremely versatile. That's why the instructions for all of our oils are the same: use as a facial or body moisturizer, a hair fortifier, add to a bath for petal soft skin or combine with salt for a lovely and invigorating scrub. All can be adjusted for all skin types (apply less for oily skin and hair and more for dry or mature skin and hair). This is one of my FAVORITE things about oil - you don't have to buy a different oil for every skin type and every use. You can simply pick one, and experiment with all of the different ways to love it.
That being said, each oil does have its own super power, so to speak:
- Sea Buckthorn Oil - Fatty acids support your natural skin barrier defense
- Camellia oil - Antioxidants fights age-accelerating free radicals
- Argan – Improves elasticity, reducing fine lines
- Jojoba - Delivers supercharged hydration
- Coconut oil – Nourishes (and transports you to a tropical island)
For facial washing and moisturizing, I look that list and say, "yes, please! All of the above." That's why I opt for blends when choosing products for my face. My skin is fairly normal - more oil prone in the T-Zone, requires less moisturizing in the summer and more in the winter. Sea Buckthorn is heavier than Camellia, so in the summer I use The Dream Team (Sea Buckthorn Blend) for facial washing and Glow On (Camellia Oil Blend) for facial moisturizing. If weather is particularly humid (like when I'm visiting family in Florida), I simply don't wipe off all of the Dream Team when I'm washing and then call it a wrap. In the winter, I use The Dream Team for both washing and moisturizing. If your face is more oily, use Glow On for both year round and if your face is more dry, use The Dream Team for both year round.
For my hair and body, I'm primarily concerned with hydration and elasticity. Also, I use it more liberally, so don't want to spend as much per ounce. For these reasons, Jojoba and Argan are my go-to's. Jojoba is slightly heavier so holds on better when used with water. This is wonderful when you're adding it to a bath or combining it with salt for a scrub. If you have dry skin and hair, you would also love it for a hair and body hydration boost. If your skin and your hair are more on the oily side of the spectrum (both true for me) you'll prefer Argan for your post shower hair treatment and daily body moisturizer.
If you're new to using oils, and just want to dip your toes to start, pick a use that sounds most appealing: hair, face, or body. Make your selection based on my guidance above and then test out the oil of your choice in all of the wonderful ways that it can be used. Maybe a light facial moisturizer is a summer priority, so you opt for Glow On. Give it a try also as a facial wash, bath oil, salt scrub, body moisturizer and hair treatment. You might find that you like the ritual of oil cleansing and want to try The Dream Team next, or maybe you fall in love with using it on your legs post-shave and want to try Argan next.
Using oils elevates your typical self-care regimen from a routine to a ritual. We hope this post helps demystify the world of oils and serums so you can get your glow on with us. If you have any questions or comments, please share them below!
It takes a village :)