NATURAL VS NATURE-IDENTICAL SKINCARE INGREDIENTS
Feeding your skin with naturally nourishing ingredients helps to keep it at its healthy best. But if you’re trying to work out the difference between natural and nature-identical ingredients, you’re not alone. Luckily, we’re here to clear things up.
Over recent years, the demand for natural skincare products has skyrocketed. As consumers, we’re spending more time than ever looking at the ingredients included in our daily essentials – and rightly so!
But the quest to understand the components of our favourite formulations can sometimes end in confusion. Take ‘natural’ and ‘nature-identical’ ingredients, for instance. What’s the difference? Is one better than the other? Well, let’s find out.
What are natural ingredients?
Natural ingredients are those that are harnessed directly from Mother Nature. They are derived from specific plant parts, including the leaves, stem, fruit and seed using minimal processing.
For example, plant oils are typically natural ingredients. They’re abundantly available in the natural world, easily extractable, and have not been chemically modified in any way.
As Kavitha Murugesan – Head of R&D and Compliance at Tropic – explains, “natural ingredients can also originate from animal sources too, but as a cruelty-free and vegan certified brand, we don’t use any of these ingredients in our products”.
What are nature-identical ingredients?
Nature identical ingredients are chemically identical to natural ingredients, but they’re synthetically created. Put simply, they’re made in a lab.
But this doesn’t mean that nature-identical ingredients are inferior. As Kavitha explains, “their molecular structure, physical and chemical properties, as well their benefits, are identical to that of the natural ingredient.”
What are the benefits of nature-identical ingredients?
You might be thinking ‘why would you use nature-identical ingredients when you can get them fresh from the natural world?’ Well, although nature is breathtakingly brilliant, demand often outstrips supply.
These skin-loving ingredients are often only available naturally in minuscule amounts, so extracting them for skincare products would be expensive, unsustainable and frankly irresponsible. However, “using nature-identical ingredients helps to keep our operations as sustainable and eco-conscious as possible,” says Kavitha. “The nature-identical ingredient will still mimic the benefits of the natural ingredient but without the environmental consequences.”
So there you have it, the difference between natural and nature-identical ingredients. To learn more about our naturally nourishing, sustainably sourced ingredients, head over to our Ingredient Glossary. We also include all of our ingredient information on our packaging and website, so you’re always in the know.