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Natural Beauty, Natural Preservatives

Natural Beauty, Natural Preservatives

Did you know that in the US, researchers have found that 1 of every 8 ingredients used in cosmetics is an industrial chemical? Pretty unbelievable right, that's the kind of statement that can take the breath right out of you. As if that was not bleak enough, many of these were created with the original intent to keep concrete soft and remove grease from auto parts. The sad reality is that we are dealing with a highly unregulated industry. Even unassuming preservatives can have detrimental effects.

With all the shortcomings that litter the market today, it is important to realize that there are safer alternatives and we are not all doomed. There are many all-natural preservatives that do the job and won’t leave you risking your health. We have broken down three of our favorites and all make an appearance in our products.

Phytocide Elderberry OS or also known as Sambucus nigra Fruit Extract acts as a preservative. The extract is derived from elderberries and is GMO and preservative-free. Elderberries are full of undecylenic acid, which is an organic fatty acid that provides multiple antimicrobial benefits and is especially effective against fungal microorganisms. It provides protection from free radicals, cell damage, and wrinkle formation.

Radish Root (Leucidal Liquid) - Leucidal Liquid is derived from radishes fermented with Leuconostoc kimchii, which in layman’s terms is lactic acid bacteria that has traditionally been used to make kimchi. It consists of an isolated peptide that is secreted by bacteria during the fermentation process and has antimicrobial benefits. It is worth noting proper attention should be paid to the conditions under which Leucidal Liquid can be used. Preliminary testing shows that the liquid remains stable up to a temperature of 60°C (140°F). Further research showed that the peptide remains active under acidic and basic conditions, but a loss of activity does occur at a pH of 9. The recommended usage level is 2.0% - 4.0% with a pH of 4.0 - 6.0.

Leucidal Liquid can be used as an alternative to harsh and abrasive synthetic preservatives and has been accepted by ECOcert as an ingredient in certified organic cosmetics and is also on the Whole Foods Acceptable Premium Preservative List. A few key benefits include that it is odorless, has a wide range of antibacterial activity and is very mild, with little to no irritation potential.

Propanediol 1, 3 is a 100% natural preservative and is derived from corn sugar fermentation. This natural miracle is used to replace gross petroleum-based glycols such as propylene glycol, butylene glycol, and glycerin. Propanediol 1, 3 increases hydration and acts as a humectant and emollient. 

These three natural preservatives pack a powerful punch and are effective when formulated correctly and the proper dosage is used. With public awareness on the rise and the modern consumer becoming more educated on the topic it’s an exciting time for the industry.


Lotioncrafter. 2017. Leucidal Liquid. Published December 8, 2017.

Universal Selector. 2016. PhytoCide Elderberry OS Technical DataSheet. Supplied by Active Micro Technologies. Published June 8, 2016. 

Making Cosmetics. 2017. Propanediol 1,3. Published December 8 2017.

Global Healing Center. 2015. 19 Chemicals to Avoid in Skin Care – Organic Skin Care. Updated February 18, 2016.

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