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4 Harmful Endocrine Disruptors to Avoid in Beauty Products

Hormone-Disrupting-Chemicals-Beauty-Products

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals or EDCs, can be one of the most difficult chemicals to avoid in beauty products. They cleverly elude most ingredient lists by hiding within a product’s packaging or an ingredient itself. So, how can we avoid these harmful chemicals if we can’t find them?

Don’t worry. By the end of this article, you’ll learn how to identify and avoid endocrine-disrupting ingredients and why it’s important to limit our exposure to these harmful hormone-mimicking chemicals.

What are Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs)?

According to the UK’s BreastCancer.Org, an endocrine disruptor is any chemical that can interfere with normal hormone functions in humans or animals. While there are naturally occurring types found in plants, such as soy (known as phytoestrogens), most endocrine-disrupting compounds come from synthetic chemicals and can be avoided.

Why Should We Avoid Endocrine Disruptors?

There’s seemingly no end to the adverse health impacts of endocrine-disrupting chemicals.

Also known as EDCs, these tricky chemicals can imitate hormones and destroy others while creating internal signaling issues which causes premature cell death. Endocrine disruptors have also been proven to accumulate in hormone-producing organs, resulting in organ malfunctions and irreversible damage.

So, how does this hormone disruption manifest itself in humans, exactly?

Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals Linked to Increased Breast Cancer Risks

Once thought to only effect hormone-regulating organs, research now clearly demonstrates that the mechanisms of EDCs are much broader than originally recognized. Of prominence is the growing relationship identified between EDCs and cancers, including in the breast, and common diseases like cardiovascular, pulmonary or neurodegenerative disorders to name a few. [1]

Breast and uterine cancer are the most frequent female-related cancers whose growth is mostly estrogen dependent. Therefore, any EDC exhibiting estrogenic effects may increase the risk of these two malignancies. [2]

Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals Linked to Depression, Autism and Neural Degeneration

Because certain EDCs are able to alter neural transmission and the formation of neural networks, the term neural-disrupting chemicals has been introduced, thus implicating EDCs in the cause of neurological disorders.

Recently, public concern has been focused on the effects of EDCs on brain function with an increase in neuropsychiatric disorders, including autism, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder as well as learning disabilities and aggressiveness. Several lines of evidence suggest that exposure to EDCs is associated with depression and could result in neural degeneration.

How to Avoid Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals in Cosmetics

As you can see, the detrimental effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals are becoming widely recognized in both the health, wellness and medical communities, now it’s time to transfer that knowledge to the beauty industry.

Here’s where you’ll find potential endocrine-disrupting chemicals lurking in your beauty products and most importantly, how to avoid them.

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Parabens

By far one of the most controversial endocrine-disrupting chemicals is parabens. Commonly used as inexpensive preservatives, these synthetic chemicals are proven to mimic estrogen in the human body and have been found built up in essential hormone regulating organs.

Parabens are chemicals with estrogen-like properties, and estrogen abnormalities are involved in the development of breast cancer. In fact, a 2012 medical study confirmed our suspicions that endocrine-disrupting chemicals can increase risks of breast cancer.

The study found 99% of malignant breast cancer tumors contained 1-5 different types of parabens.[4] 

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has even linked methylparabens, in particular, to metabolic, developmental, hormonal, and neurological disorders, as well as various cancers.

Unlike many endocrine-disrupting chemicals, parabens can be found in the product’s ingredient list. Here’s what to look for.

List of Paraben Types to Avoid:

  • Methylparaben
  • Butylparaben
  • Propylparaben
  • Ethylparaben
  • Isobutylparaben
  • Benzylparaben

Plastic Packaging

When it comes to EDC exposure, our most widespread threat may be plastics. They’re everywhere, wreaking havoc in our oceans, food containers and no doubt sitting on the shelf of your shower.

Harmful-Chemicals-Plastic

The problem with plastic packaging is its ability to leach harmful chemicals into the material it contains. Currently, the most widespread concern is the manmade chemical, Bisphenol-A or BPA – a widely recognized endocrine-disrupting chemical and xenoestrogen.

What Are Xenoestrogens?

A xenoestrogen is a hormone-mimicking chemical in humans and animals, specifically the hormone, estrogen.

Not only has BPA been linked to endocrine disruption, but environmental scientists have noted its detrimental effects on our oceans and wildlife. Recall, xenoestrogens and EDCs don’t just affect humans, but the delicate plants and animals comprising our vital ecosystems.

 

So, just avoid BPA, and you’ll be fine, right? Not necessarily.

 

This study from Environmental Health Perspectives, uncovered a very telling discovery.

“The testing showed that more than 70 percent of the products released chemicals that acted like estrogen. And that was before they exposed the stuff to real-world conditions: simulated sunlight, dishwashing and microwaving.”

It’s very difficult to avoid all plastics in everyday life, but as conscious beauty professionals, we can start behind the chair by replacing plastic products with amber glass salon products.

Phthalates

Pronounced thal-ates, phthalates are one of those elusive endocrine-disrupting chemicals you won’t see directly spelled out on a cosmetic’s ingredients list. Unlike our other aforementioned compounds, phthalates do not have hormone-mimicking effects on the body. Instead, studies have shown adverse effects on the male reproductive system, including decreased sperm count, testicular cell destruction and thyroid irregularities.

How to Avoid Phthalates:

  • Look for beauty products without synthetic fragrance
    • “Fragrance” or “pafum” could be the most vaguely listed ingredients in existence. Because fragrance is considered “proprietary,” companies are not required to disclose its components. This is where sneaky ingredients, like phthalates, can make unknowingly make their way into your products.
  • Avoid plastic packaging, especially PVC with recycle code #3.
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Pesticides

Pesticides in beauty products? You might be thinking, that can’t possibly be a listed ingredient and you’d be correct. While we can all appreciate the rise of more natural beauty products, we should be cognizant of the type of plants used in our cosmetics and how they’re harvested.

Specifically, neurotoxic organophosphate compounds were developed during WWII by Nazis as nerve gas to aggressively attack the human nervous system. This same chemical has been adapted for pesticides to target the nervous system in bugs and pests.

How to Avoid Organophosphates:

  • Purchase professional organic salon products.
    • Specifically, look for the botanical ingredients to be organic (grown without pesticides) or biodynamic-organic (a step above organic).
  • Purchase raw organic fruit and vegetables, if using natural beauty treatments.

While it may be impossible to avoid all endocrine-disrupting chemicals in our beauty products, steering clear of questionable ingredients like Parabens, Phthalates, Plastics, and Pesticides is a big step in limiting our harmful toxin exposure. Even though the beauty industry is highly unregulated, together, we can make informed, conscious decisions to ensure the health, wellness and beauty of ourselves and salon clients.

So the next time you’re tempted to purchase a new product, make sure to look out for these 4 major endocrine-disrupting chemicals. Your health, your clients, and the planet will thank you for it. 🙂

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Trending Hair Colors This Week – Vol. 11

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If you think you’ve seen every hair color our #HolisticHairTribe can offer, feast your eyes on these stunning hues they shared with us this week. From fashion colors to balayage, these will surely leave you wanting to try the formulas yourself.

Oway Organic Hair Color Formulas: Check out our top picks below!

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Red Currant Organic Hair Color Formula

Red Currant Hair Color Formula

Hair by Marcus Sederstrom

Nothing else makes us happier than seeing rich and vibrant hair colors, like this Red Currant beauty. Marcus used color blocking technique to achieve this gorgeous tone, and we must say we’re impressed.

Level: 3

Grey Percentage: 40%

Color Blocking 1: Oway Hcolor 5.0 Natural Light Brown + Oway Hcolor 6.31 Beige Dark Blonde with Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Color Blocking 2: Oway Hcolor 6.0 Natural Dark Blonde + Oway Hcolor 6.4 Coppery Dark Blonde with Oway Hcatalyst 30 Volume Cream Developer

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Cosmic Fusion Hair Color Formula

Hair by Maren McKenna

Pastel hair is cute, but there’s something mesmerizing about galaxy hair. The luscious blend of blue and purple tones makes us feel as though we’re staring at the Milky Way.

Pre-lightened Ends: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 40 Volume Cream Developer

Toner: Oway Hcolor 8.1 Ash Light Blonde + .03 oz of Oway Hcolor 0.7 Purple Booster + a dot of Oway Hcolor 0.8 Blue Booster with Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

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Espresso & Cream Hair Color Formula

Hair by Nicole Daly

Like a shot of espresso in the morning, this hair color by Nicole got us bolting from our seats. The addition of highlights gave this wavy hair style more texture and dimension.

Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Base Toner: Oway Hcolor 6.0 Natural Dark Blonde

Pull Through: Oway Hcolor 8.0 Natural Light Blonde + Oway Hcolor 8.31 Beige Light Blonde with a pinch of Oway Hcolor 9.43 Copper Golden Very Light Blonde

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Cherry Cola Hair Color Formula

Hair by Deb Pedraza

To achieve this stunning color, carefully blend from the roots to the midshaft, and then blend again from the midshaft to the roots. This creates a seamless transition of colors and erases demarcation lines.

Balayage: O&M Ammonia Free Keratin Powder Lightener + O&M Mineral.CCT 20 Volume COVERAGE Cream Activator  (40 min)

Refresh Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer + Oway Hmilk No Stress Conditioning Treatment

Roots (1.5 cm): 35g O&M Mineral.CCT 5/0 Light Brown + 35g O&M Mineral.CCT 20 Volume COVERAGE Cream Activator

Mids: 25g O&M Mineral.CCT 5/0 Light Brown + 25g O&M Mineral.CCT 10 Volume DEPOSIT Cream Activator

Ends: 20g Oway Hcolor 90.1 Ash Super Bleaching Blonde + 10g Oway Hcolor 0.6 Red Booster + 4g Oway Hcolor 0.7 Purple Booster + 34g Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

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Ash Blonde Hair Color Formula

Hair by Carolanne Horne

One-dimensional hair colors are nice, but there’s no denying adding more contrast to the hair makes it more interesting. Doing some shadow root and balayage gives the hair more oomph, making the hair look great from every angle.

Base (45 mins): 7.1 + 0.8 with Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Mids: Oway Hnectar 8.3 Wheat Light Blonde + Oway Hnectar 9.3 Wheat Very Light Blonde with Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Processing Time: 35 mins (No Heat)

Toner: Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum

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Coffee Caramel Hair Color Formula

Hair by Summer Reid

We love everything that reminds us of a good cup of coffee, and this is no exception. Soft, creamy highlights not only help define the layers but they are also one of the go-to face-framing techniques.

Roots: Oway Hcolor 5.0 Natural Light Brown

Highlights: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 40 Volume Cream Developer

Toner: Oway Hcolor 90.11 Intense Ash Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum

Which are your favorites this week?

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ILLIPE BUTTER BENEFITS: The Plant Butter for Dry, Damaged Hair

Illipe-Butter-Benefits

With increasing humidity comes unruly hair, and the only way to fight the frizz is to look for hair treatments that will help the hair retain more moisture and increase its manageability. Because of this, hair care products have recently been incorporating plant butters in their formulations. While natural butters like Kukui and Shea are well regarded for their nourishing properties, there is another plant butter that provides the same hair care benefits.

Illipe Butter is a vegetable fat derived from the nut of Shorea stenoptera tree, a plant endemic to the jungles of Southeast Asia. Because of its high fatty acid content and vitamin profile, it brings a lot of benefits to the hair and scalp, making it one of the most sought after plant butters in the world.

Benefits of Illipe Butter to the Hair

Restores Hair Elasticity

Oway-Hcatalyst-Illipe-ButterHair elasticity is a great indicator of hair health. Healthy hair can stretch around 30% (when wet) of its length and return to its normal state without breaking. If not, it either means the hair is lacking protein or moisture, or a mix of both.

To restore the hair’s elasticity, it needs a moisturizer with high fatty acid content – and Illipe Butter has this and more. Aside from containing linoleic acid, it is also a natural emollient. Thus, it can effectively penetrate the hair shaft and fill in empty spaces in the hair. As a result, the hair becomes stronger and healthier.

Before coloring hair, we recommend doing the Wet Stretch Test to determine the health of the hair and using Oway Hcatalyst for lightening services. Its gentle formulations, which include Illipe Butter, can reduce the degeneration of skin cells and restore elasticity to the hair fiber.

Prevents Hair Loss

Losing hair is one of the scariest things that can happen to anyone. To prevent hair loss, the body needs a good amount of vitamin F, also known as linoleic acid – an essential fatty acid that protects the hair from lipid imbalance and skin irritations. Without linoleic acid, the scalp becomes susceptible to dermatitis and, eventually, hair loss.

Dermatitis causes the scalp to itch and flake, making it a very unfriendly place for hair growth. This causes the hair to weaken and fall out. Illipe Butter is packed full of linoleic acid that reverses the damage caused by dermatitis. Illipe Butter melts in contact with the skin, so the nutrients are quickly absorbed by the scalp, curbing further skin proliferation and hair loss.

Repairs Damaged Hair

Illipe Butter is a hard butter that contains powerful antioxidants. These antioxidants help repair damaged hair by washing away free radicals and chemicals that are causing the hair to dry out and break. This is why many people prefer using Illipe Butter as hair mask to treat over-processed hair.

Hydrates the Scalp & Hair

Wondering what makes the hair silky smooth? It’s not in the product we use but it’s in the scalp environment. Dry and unhealthy scalp can result in various hair and skin issues that can worsen if left untreated. From parched hair to burning scalp, these problems can be prevented if properly nourished and hydrated.

Illipe Butter is high in Vitamins A and E, which are known to soothe and hydrate the scalp and hair. They help stimulate the production of healthy sebum and shield the hair and scalp from external aggressors to keep the hair from drying out and breaking off.

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Reinforces Scalp’s Lipid Barrier

Hcolor-Organic-IngredientsIt may not seem like it, but our scalp is always hard at work – producing natural oils, constantly renewing skin cells, and fighting off free radicals and bacteria. So it’s necessary that the scalp’s barrier remains strong and stable. Otherwise, external aggressors can easily penetrate the scalp, creating potential problems.

Illipe Butter is rich in unsaturated fatty acids oleic and linoleic acids that help protect the scalp by building up its surface layer.1 This keeps irritants and bacteria from passing through, resulting in more resilient skin.

This makes Oway Hcolor highly suited for people with sensitive skin. The Illipe Butter and other nourishing plant botanicals in this organic hair color not only gives the hair gorgeous color and shine, but it’s also gentle for even the most delicate skin.

With such magnificent benefits, it only makes sense that hair care products are including Illipe Butter in the ingredients list. Have you ever tried this fabulous plant butter yourself?

Source:

1Mogos, T et. al. (1994). The hair levels of unsaturated fatty acids (oleic, linoleic, and linolenic) indicators of the lipid metabolic balance. Available: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7920331

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Educator Spotlight: Vanessa Love

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A Skin Care Specialist, Hair Stylist, Reiki Master, and Medical Qigong Practitioner. This month’s Educator Spotlight is on Vanessa Love, a multi-hyphenate artist from Fort Lauderdale, Florida that truly embodies the holistic practice.

Being part of the beauty and wellness industry for more than 13 years, Vanessa is looking forward to sharing her expertise and help as many people as she can on their own path to success.

Read Vanessa’s interview below!

What are some of your inspiring or motivating words for new holistic stylists?

There are two important things that got me where I am today: Always Follow Your Intuition; and Never Stop Learning! Throughout your career, you will be shown all different things that glitter – from products, to techniques, to job offers. But all that glitters is not gold. Stay 100% true to yourself and what you believe in, keep the things you choose to hold in that circle you believe in. If holistic is your goal, weed out the rest! If what you seek does not exist, really think about creating it yourself. Anything is possible! That’s where continuing education comes in. Learn everything you can about what you are most passionate about. Follow your joy and you will never “work” a day in your life.

How long have you been in the industry and why did you decide to become a skin care specialist and hair stylist?

2017 is my 13th year in the industry. I always loved doing hair, even when I was a kid. One of my first memories with it was when I talked my little 6-year old sister into letting me cut her hair in the front yard when my mother was at work. Yes, I used the orange handled kitchen scissors from the “junk drawer” and I was about 10 years old! My mom said it actually looked good, but don’t ever do it again. I also was the one doing all my friends hair for school dances. I always had a passion for it and it came very naturally to me. Skin care came with my own skin issues. I wanted to find a way to deal with it without having to resort to medication and chemical-laden products that seemed to do more harm than good.

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What is the latest skin care technology, procedure, or technique that excites you?

I happen to be a very different kind of Esthetician and Stylist. Through following my dreams, literally, I am also a Reiki Master Teacher and Medical Qigong Practitioner. I love adding energy work into my treatments to receive a better understanding of the possible root cause to chronic skin conditions and anything else my client may be having an issue with. To me this practice is like being able to see under the surface to better advise on home and self-care to help my clients/friends feel their best.

What is your most significant accomplishment as a beauty professional?

Educating, absolutely. This will be my 10th year as an educator to Estheticians, Massage Therapists, Stylists, and spa/salon staff. I love sharing the knowledge I have been so fortunate to collect over the years with anyone interested in learning. In turn, I have learned so much and I can’t put into words how much I love what I do. Perhaps my favorite story from these years is being given the opportunity by Tamara Wills at Allyu Spa in Chicago to teach Reiki to the staff there. I was very excited to receive my Reiki Master Teacher certificate in 2010 and at the time I was an esthetician at Allyu. Energy work, in my mind fit perfectly with her business model of being a holistic spa, so I asked her if we could add it to the menu. She saw my enthusiasm and looked at me adoringly and to my surprise said, oh no sweetheart, we can’t add it to the menu, you’re the only one who does it! I thought for a moment and then said, I’m getting my teachers certificate soon, after that can I teach everyone and then we can put it on the menu? She said, you do that, and if they want to learn, you can go ahead and teach! So I finished my studies for my teachers certificate, went back, and set up multiple classes and by the end of it all I had taught Reiki to at least 30 therapists at the spa. We added it to the menu and it’s now one of their most popular services!

What is your favorite client story?

oway-radiance-face-balm-kitThere really are so many that it’s really hard to narrow it down. So many people have trusted me with their skin and even their energy, it’s such an honor to be able to touch people in such a close way. One that stands out though is working with a young man who had really bad acne. He really had no idea of how to care for his skin and was making all the classic mistakes without knowing any better. It was so awesome to see his self-esteem go way up after changing literally two things he was doing. We changed to a different cleanser and started to use a hydrating product. That’s it! The way his skin transformed over a few weeks was amazing! He was a believer from them on, and was open to other treatments and home care to further his results.

How do you want people to remember you?

As someone who never stops growing and evolving while always available to educate, advise and otherwise assist colleagues and clients along on their own path.

Considering you are a multi-faceted cosmetologist, why did you decide to specialize in holistic skin care?

There are a few reasons why I chose skincare. One of them was wanting to gain an understanding of my own skin issues and learn how I could help others with their issues. Having an issue with your skin, and having that issue be right on your face can be extremely traumatizing and actually cause that person to want to hold back in certain ways in their life. Being able to educate people on how to care for themselves is something that I am extremely passionate about, as well as seeing just a few changes and how that can help someone feel like they no longer need to hold back. Also, having started out as a Cosmetologist and Stylist, I really didn’t like all the chemicals associated with that line of work, and there was a holistic path opening up with skincare right at that time.

What is your favorite Simply Organic brand and product?

I’m loving the Oway skincare so much! I love working with healthy oils, essential oils and botanicals. I love the Regenerating Booster. Serums have always been a favorite of mine since they are so packed full of amazing active ingredients. This serum actually works to repair and keep the skin healthy and strong! As you get to know me you will see I’m all about “filling your cup”, getting you what you need to get your skin to the healthy level it needs to be and going from there. This is one of those products that is a game changer and a beautiful first step to changing your skin.

Share a short term and long term goal with us…

Short term: I am really looking forward to learning all I can about the lines and sharing through different forms of education. I feel like there is so much room for creativity and this company seems very open to hearing ideas and working with someone’s individual potential. Long term: I would like to be a part of changing this entire industry for the better.

How has your career created value in your life?

My career has brought so many amazing people into my life. People I feel I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to connect with otherwise. The diversity among our profession is so beautiful, I am so very grateful to be a part of it. I feel inspired by so many of the artists I’ve met, whether they are a hairstylist, esthetician or massage therapist, and I feel honored to have had the opportunity to inspire others as well. My career is my life. I’m happy that I get to do what I love every single day.

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Trending Hair Colors This Week – Vol. 9

Pinks and blondes may come as no surprise as Spring favorites but this week, our #HolisticHairTribe gave these pretty hues a makeover. Still unsure what hair color you want this season? Maybe this set can give you some inspiration.

Check out the trending hair colors from our community this week:

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Hazy Ash Hair Color Formula

Hair by Laura Blackwell

With this Hazy Ash hair color, Laura just took smokey blonde to a whole new level. The asymmetrical bob hairstyle also gave the hair more dimension, making the color pop even more.

Color: O&M Mineral.CCT 9/16 Very Light Ash Violet Blonde with O&M Mineral.CCT 5 Volume SEMI Cream Activator

Processing Time: 20 mins

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Rose Gold Hair Color Formula

Hair by Caitlin Helle

Rose gold is one of the prettiest hair trends to hit the beauty industry, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that people still can’t get enough of this color. The pink-meets-golden blonde hair is the perfect transition color for anyone looking to go bolder in the future.

Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener

Toner: Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum + Oway Hcolor 6.62 Irisee Red Dark Blonde

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Warm Honey Hair Color Formula

Hair by Meredith Johnson

There’s nothing we love more than a multi-tonal hair color. Hair colors like this Warm Honey blonde by Meredith is perfect for enhancing the natural warmth of your client’s complexion.

Full Balayage (Foils): Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Base Color/Shadow Root (with slight pull through): Oway Hcolor 6.1 Ash Dark Blonde with a Baby Pinch of Oway Hcolor 1.8 Blue Black + Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

Toner: 10g Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum + 20g Oway Hcolor 90.11 Intense Ash Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 0.1 Ash Booster + Oway Hcolor 0.8 Blue Booster (Baby Pinch with the Boosters)

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Pink Blush Hair Color Formula

Hair by Mandala Holistic Hair and Wellness Studio

If you’re not into bright pink, perhaps this Pink Blush color from Mandala is the shade you’re looking for? It’s subtle but still has the quirky factor to it.

Bleached Hair

Toner: Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum + Oway Hcolor 0.6 Red Booster + Oway Hcolor 0.1 Ash Booster with Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

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Crimson Copper Hair Color Formula

Hair by Bekah Salazar

Red hair colors are vibrant and stunning, so it’s not surprising many people go for this hue. But like many other hair colors, getting the right shade for your skin tone is important. And by the looks of it, Bekah got it perfectly for this one.

Base: ½ oz Oway Hcolor 5.6 Red Light Brown + ¾ oz Oway Hcolor 7.6 Red Blonde + 1 ¼ oz Oway Hcolor 6.44 Deep Coppery Dark Blonde + Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

Ends: ⅓ oz Oway Hcolor 5.6 Red Light Brown + 1 oz Oway Hcolor 7.6 Red Blonde + ¾ oz Oway Hcolor 7.44 Deep Coppery Blonde + ¾ oz Oway Hcolor 6.44 Deep Coppery Dark Blonde + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Which are your favorites this week?

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ACAI BERRY BENEFITS: The Amazon Superfood for the Hair

Acai-Benefits

There’s a reason Acai bowls are all over social media. Aside from its yummy color and tasty flavor, Acai or Euterpe oleracea is packed full of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients necessary for a healthy body – earning it the ‘superfood’ moniker.

But did you know this superfood is also super for treating various hair problems?

Acai Benefits for the Hair

Stimulates Hair Growth

momentum-mens-shampooAcai contains anthocyanin, a phytochemical that belongs to a group of flavonoids which are known to promote blood circulation. Proper blood circulation is important for stimulating hair growth because it ensures the hair follicles get the nutrition and oxygen they need to begin their growth cycle.

Applying Acai extract or hair care products containing this ingredient, like Momentum Men’s Rejuvenate Cleansing Shampoo, on the hair and scalp is said to be an effective way to revitalize the hair bulbs.

Reduces Hair Loss

To prevent hair from falling out, we need to have a healthy scalp. And to have a healthy scalp, we need sufficient amount of essential fatty acids, proteins, and vitamins in our system. Acai berries have these and more.

Rich in Omega 3, 6, and 9 as well as vitamins B, C, and E, Acai is effective for reducing hair loss. The Omega fatty acids, along with Vitamin C, nourish the scalp by keeping it hydrated and creating a protective barrier against external aggressors, which often cause hair fall. Furthermore, Vitamins B and E contained in Acai berries work together to strengthen the root and hair shaft, and discourage thinning.

Strengthens Hair

Acai may not have the full Vitamin B complex, but what it does have is enough to keep the hair healthy. Vitamins B1 (Thiamin), B2 (Riboflavin), and B3 (Niacin) contribute to the nourishment of hair follicles by converting carbohydrates into energy, which is needed by the cells to continue functioning and delivering nutrients to all the other cells in the body, including the hair follicles.

When combined with Zinc, which is also present in Acai, the hair becomes stronger from roots to tips. This makes Acai an excellent ingredient when dealing with textured hair.

Oway’s Waveshaper Perm is infused with Fair Trade Acai to keep the hair nourished and protected while undergoing a perm or relaxing treatment.

Protects Against Free Radicals

Free radicals are dangerous compounds that damage our scalp and hair follicles in the form of oxidative stress.1

Rich in antioxidants like Vitamin C, Acai helps fight off free radicals from the hair by creating a protective barrier. If the hair is constantly exposed to free radicals and harmful chemicals, the hair will begin to thin, causing premature aging and hair loss. With Acai, those dreaded toxins are kept at bay.

Prevents Premature Aging

Oway-WaveshaperHair follicles are complex mini-organs of its own.2 And like other organs, it needs energy, nourishment, and protection against harmful toxins to function properly, otherwise it will start to age and break.

Acai is an ORAC-rich plant, which means it has high Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. Our bodies need between 2,400 and 3,000 units of ORAC to neutralize free radicals that’s causing our cells to age prematurely, and Acai alone contains a massive 3,800 units of ORAC.3

 

While the best way to receive all the health benefits of Acai is eating it, there’s definitely no harm in incorporating it in your hair care routine. After all, directly applying Acai berry extract on the scalp and hair is as effective as taking this wonder berry orally.

Sources

1 Trueb, RM. (2006). Pharmacologic interventions in aging hair. Available: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2695167/

2 Blume-Peytavi, U. et al. (2008). Hair Growth and Disorders. Published by Springer.

3 Bird, SR. (2009). A Healing Grove: African Tree Remedies and Rituals for the Body and Spirit. Published by Lawrence Hill Books.

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Holistic Hairdessing: The Future of the Beauty Industry

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The Future is Holistic

A simple Google search for “organic hair color” will likely introduce you to countless hair color brands that tout themselves as “organic” or “natural”. And it’s not surprising.

According to market research, the organic and natural personal care market is predicted to explode to $22 billion by 2024. So, it doesn’t come as a shock that many brands are suddenly putting “organic” or “natural” labels on their products to appeal to green salons and health-conscious clients.

But what do these words really mean in the hairdressing industry? Why are organic or naturally derived products the better choice? And more importantly, how do we know which products are truly natural? This month, in American Salon Magazine, our experts weighed in to bring more education and transparency to the organic beauty movement. Here’s what we had to say:

At Simply Organic Beauty, all of our products contain organic or natural ingredients but we didn’t stop there. Our salon products are HOLISTIC – meaning they do not harm the HAIR, HEALTH, or the PLANET. Adopting this No Harm Mantra goes beyond the “organic” label and demands a stricter set of standards for our beauty products.

Ethical and Environmentally Friendly

To be considered a true green brand, a company must not only focus on using organic ingredients in their products – but they must also be committed to reducing their environmental impact. For example, here at Simply Organic Beauty, we offer eco-education, which include Salon Refill Programs and Upcycling Tips for salons – so both hair stylists and their clients are educated on how they can reduce their carbon footprint.

Aside from being eco-conscious, our product lines are all cruelty-free, because we firmly believe that no animal deserves to be killed and tortured in the name of research. There are a few steps you can take to ensure your products cause no harm to animals.

  • Look for cruelty-free salon products certified by reputable animal rights organizations, such as PETA and Leaping Bunny.
  • Research the parent company of your products, as they could still engage in animal testing. For example, Esteé Lauder tests on animals. They own brands that do not, but your money still goes to support animal testing.
  • Make sure your brand does NOT distribute products in countries that require animal testing. China requires animal testing by law, so steer clear of products available in China.
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High-Performance Organic Salon Products

When people hear about “organic hair color”, they often equate it with “less effective”, which is a common misconception. Sure, it may not seem as aggressive as chemical-laden hair dyes, but it definitely is a healthier alternative and equally effective in coloring hair.

In the professional beauty industry, “organic” means products formulated with the LEAST amount of synthetic chemicals and the MAXIMUM amount of natural ingredients. For hair color to work, it needs a certain amount of chemicals for color molecules to bind and penetrate the hair shaft.

At Simply Organic Beauty, our mission is to provide safe and professional hair color formulated with pure botanical ingredients that make hair color last, while nourishing and repairing the hair.

One of our product lines – Oway Hcolor – is made up of 98.6% organic, biodynamic, and fair-trade ingredients with only 1.4% chemical ingredients necessary for the hair color to work. This makes Oway the most natural hair color in the professional beauty industry. In fact, Oway has been voted Best Ammonia-Free Hair Color for two years in a row, a testament to its efficacy.

“First of all, it’s super easy to use, and any formula I put together is gorgeous. You don’t have to struggle with gray coverage, either.  There’s no ‘oops’ factor. The organic ingredients that are in these products actually help plump up and repair the hair. You’re healing the cortex and the cuticle, and you’re not just adding silicones to create shine, you’re actually creating shine from the inside out. I think of it as hair repair, not just hair color.” – Rebecca Gregory, Simply Organic Beauty Education and Technical Director

100% Pure, Biodynamic Ingredients

In line with our mission to provide the safest and most natural professional hair color, we make sure that our products are only made with the purest plant-based ingredients obtained through fair trade. The ingredients we use are BIODYNAMIC, a holistic approach to farming that focuses on the overall health of the farm. This means not using chemicals and pesticides that interfere with the harmony and ecological balance among all living creatures.

“At Simply Organic Beauty, we’re using plants that aren’t just organic, they’re biodynamic – which means they’re grown without pesticides or polluting farm machinery. Instead, the plants are picked by real people in accordance with the moon’s lunar cycles.” – Scott Mitchell, Simply Organic Beauty CEO

This process ensures that the ingredients are ethically managed and harvested in their purest form.

Full Ingredient Disclosure

In recent years, many people have become increasingly aware of the toxins present in cosmetics. Health-conscious consumers are no longer just reading the front packaging. The word “organic” at the front doesn’t cut it anymore – they are now scrutinizing the back label for inconspicuous ingredients that may contain harmful chemicals.

read-the-labelCompanies have tried hiding (and many still do) the synthetic chemicals they use in “Fragrance or Parfum” which often causes allergic reactions and skin irritations.

Transparency, honesty, and integrity are the core principles that govern all the things we do at Simply Organic Beauty. We fully disclose our ingredients to our clients and we don’t just take product claims at face value. To be labeled as “natural”, a product must have at least 80% organic, natural, or naturally derived ingredients.

We are aware that switching to more natural hair color alternatives is not easy for salons, stylists, and clients alike, but the benefits always outweigh the risk. By choosing to go green, we are not just curbing exposure to toxic ingredients but we are also increasing our POSITIVE impact on the environment.

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Find us in American Salon’s April 2017 issue!

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GERANIUM FLOWER EXTRACT BENEFITS: Why This Simple yet Powerful Houseplant is Good for Your Hair

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Popular for its beauty and rose-like aroma, Geranium or Pelargonium graveolens makes a delightful houseplant. But this dainty perennial is no ordinary flowering plant. Did you know all its parts – from the flower to root – are filled with therapeutic properties that can cure various health and beauty issues?

For instance, Geranium’s flower extract has been traditionally used for skin rejuvenation and aromatherapy for thousands of years, dating as far back as the ancient Egyptian times. Geranium flower extract is also highly sought after for its ability to treat several hair and scalp issues.

Benefits of Geranium Flower Extract to the Hair

Fights Free Radicals

Due to its high in antioxidant and flavonoid content, Geranium helps fight free radicals, keeping the hair strong and healthy. That is why hair treatment products containing Geranium flower extract, like Oway’s Htech Pre-Clarifying Shampoo and Hmilk No Stress, are often recommended to be used before and during a technical service. It effectively removes impurities and product residue from the scalp and hair to allow color to penetrate and cover greys, without damaging the hair.

Prevents Hair Loss

Amino acids are the building blocks of healthy hair. They are an essential component in producing keratin, the protein that adds strength to hair and scalp. Without enough keratin, hair becomes brittle and eventually stops growing, causing it to fall out. But because Geranium is full of amino acids, its flower extract can help decrease hair loss by nourishing the hair with amino acids. All you need do is mix Geranium essential oil and a carrier oil, like Jojoba Oil for maximum absorption, then apply on the affected area.

Treats Scalp Irritations

In 2012, a study revealed that Geranium essential oil contains antiseptic and antibacterial properties that inhibit the growth of bacteria, thus making it effective in treating skin problems, such as allergies, irritations, burns, and inflammation.1 For hypersensitive clients, applying protective serums infused with Geranium, like Oway Hscreen, or mixing it with hair color mixtures before doing any technical service will help prevent reactions or discomfort.

Tones the Scalp

Dandruff occurs in two ways: when your scalp lacks moisture or when your sebaceous glands produce excess oil. Both cause flaking, irritation, and severe itching. Geranium flower extract is one of the few effective essential oils that deal with sebum under- and over-production, making it an excellent treatment for both dry and oily dandruff.

Like Rosemary, Geranium balances the scalp’s pH by deep-cleansing the scalp and regulating its sebum production. Whether you’re dealing with dry or oily dandruff, shampoos that contain Geranium, like Oway Volumizing Hair Bath, might just be the solution you’re looking for.

Gives a Refreshing Aroma

Who doesn’t love to smell like roses after a bath? Geranium flower extract is often mistaken for rose essential oil because they share the same aroma profile and therapeutic benefits. So, when Geranium is mixed with hair care products like shampoos and conditioners, it will give the hair a cheery floral scent that can wake up the senses.

Geranium-Hair-Benefits

OW_BioRich-Back-BarDiffusing or spraying this essential oil before any service will immediately change the mood inside the salon. If you don’t have Geranium essential oils, Oway Bio-Rich Water is a fantastic alternative. It is made from a blend of flower extracts that include Geranium, Ylang-ylang, Camellia, and Sunflower – so it doesn’t only leave the hair smelling like Spring, it also nourishes and protects.

Geranium might seem like an ordinary houseplant, but do not let its size fool you. With its rich bioactive components, this ubiquitous herb might just be the answer to many of our hair problems.

Source:

Ghannadi, A. (2012). Antibacterial activity and composition of essential oils from Pelargonium graveolens L’Her and Vitex agnus-castus L. Available: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3507305/

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How to Create a Salon Refill Product Program

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Now more than ever, consumers are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of the goods they are buying. Today’s savvy clients are leaning towards businesses who are making valid efforts in cutting their environmental impact. And as holistic hair stylists, we are in the best position to turn their awareness into action.

Our solution: A Salon Refill Product Program. Implementing this Program will not only benefit your business sales-wise but, more importantly, it also allows you to become a more sustainable, eco-friendly salon.

Grab our ultra useful Salon Refill Product Program Tips!

Create an eye-catching product refill station.

salon-refill-programYour display area is often the first and last thing your clients see when they enter and exit your salon, so it is important to create an eye-catching display area for your Refill Station. This helps generate enough curiosity and interest to get your clients to check out how it works and jump on your newest initiative.

You can either make your own shelves or purchase from thrift stores and craft stores, then neatly arrange the products.

Limited on space? Not a problem! You can use your back bar area as your Refill Station area by simply stocking up on your best-selling products that come in professional sizes, like Oway Hair Baths and Conditioners.

Create an attention grabbing Refill Station Sign.

A Refill Station Sign or shelf talkers are integral to the success of your Refill Station, so make sure they stand out. Place a “Refill Station” sign above the products so clients immediately know what the shelf is for. You can also add business cards and product labels that your clients can read while waiting to be serviced, but be sure to keep the message short and simple. Many salons use Green as font color for their shelf talkers as it’s often associated with being Eco-Friendly.

Make it interactive.

Allow your clients to experience refilling their own salon containers, or watch their stylist do so. This makes them an active participant in solving environmental problems, thus keeping them involved and invested in your initiative.

The Program is also a great opportunity to introduce other Oway products and their benefits to your clients. Let them smell and test the products and you’ll be surprised how this practice can boost your salon retail sales.

Explain your eco-initiative.

Highlighting the benefits of the Refill Station to your clients and how they’re helping the environment by participating is a sure-fire way to get them on board. Below are some of the Program’s benefits to your clients and the environment:

Benefits For Your Clients

  • Decrease Product Cost by 15%
  • Feel Good About Being More Eco-Friendly
  • Have Fun Interacting with Refill Station Display

Benefits For the Environment

  • Decrease Carbon Emissions
  • Decrease Consumption of Finite Resources
  • Increase Natural Purity of Animal Habitats

Reward your clients.

Offering rewards is a proven way to entice clients into participating in your Refill Program. Put up signs like: “Bring me back to be refilled and receive 15% OFF” and you won’t even have to convince them.

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Ready to create your own Salon Product Refill Program?

Grab our FREE Salon Product Refill Program Guide below!

Salon-Refill-Product-Guide

Get helpful tips on how to jumpstart your own Refill Product Station for your eco-friendly salon!

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Trending Hair Colors This Week – Vol. 7

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Put some spice into your spring and summer look by trying out some new hair colors. They’re the perfect season to get that blonde or vibrant hue you’ve always dreamed of.

Need inspiration? See this week’s top hair colors from our #HolisticHairTribe!

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Purple Delirium Hair Color Formula

Hair by Angela Molina

Galaxy hair trend has been around since 2015, but it’s not showing any signs of slowing down. Why would it? The burst of colors is (literally) out of this world and incredibly edgy when done right.

Natural Level: 6/7

Lift: Level 10

Color 1 (1:5): Oway Hcolor 90.11 Intense Ash Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 0.8 Blue Booster

Color 2 (1:5): Oway Hcolor 90.2 Irisee Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 0.6 Red Booster

Color 3 (1:10): Oway Hcolor 90.2 Irisee Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 0.7 Purple Booster

Color 4: Oway Hcolor 0.1 Ash Booster

All Mixed with Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

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Halcyon Hair Color Formula

Hair by Christen Papasso of Grow – Organic Hair Salon

Purple and gold? Who would have thought? The key to mixing opposite colors is finding balance. When used at full saturation, purple and gold can look jarring – but can be really beautiful when perfectly blended.

Full Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 30 Volume Cream Developer

Blonde Color: Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer + Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum + Oway Hcolor 9.0 Natural Very Light Blonde

Purple Color: Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer + Oway Hcolor 0.7 Purple Booster + Oway Hcolor 90.0 Natural Super Bleaching Blonde + a drop of Oway Hcolor 0.1 Ash Booster

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Beach Blonde Hair Color Formula

Hair by Maren McKenna

Everybody loves summer, which is why beach blonde hair never goes out of style. The combination of brown and blonde highlights reminds us of that fun, sunny day at the beach – and this work by Maren just made us wish it’s summer already.

Painted: Oway Hcatalyst 30 Volume Cream Developer + Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener

Lowlight: Oway Hcolor 8.1 Ash Light Blonde + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Toner: Oway Hcolor 10.1 Ash Extra Light Blonde/Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum

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Bright Cerise Hair Color Formula

Hair by Desiree Cerda of The Moon Room

Pastel pink hair is cute, but hot pink hair? Only the brave would dare. This color is very tricky to do, so we must know the right formula and technique to get it right. The good news is we have Desiree’s formula to guide us.

Natural Regrowth: Oway Hcolor 6.66 Deep Red Dark Blonde + Oway Hcatalyst 30 Volume Cream Developer

Color Melt (Pulled Midway): Oway Hcolor 8.66 Deep Red Light Blonde with 1/4 of Oway Hcolor 6.66 Deep Red Dark Blonde + Oway Hcolor 0.6 Red Booster with Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Ends: Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum + a dash of Oway Hcolor 0.7 Purple Booster with Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer and Blended from Oway Hcolor 8.66 Deep Red Light Blonde

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Red Garnet Hair Color Formula

Hair by Kat Blamey of Ametrine Salon

Vibrant and eye-catching, red hair is always a showstopper. Get the right shade for your skin tone and you’ll definitely be turning heads. Just don’t forget to bring some attitude to work the look.

Base (1:1): Oway Hcolor 7.43 Copper Golden Blonde + Oway Hcolor 8.66 Deep Red Light Blonde with 15 vol

Mids and Ends (1:1.5): Oway Hcolor 7.43 Copper Golden Blonde + Oway Hcolor 8.66 Deep Red Light Blonde with Oway Htone 9 Volume Cream Developer

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Vanilla Blonde Hair Color Formula

Hair by Meredith Johnson

Great for an array of skin tones, this ash blonde is a very versatile shade. But the trick to making it more ‘now’ is starting off with dark roots that slowly fade into a lighter shade of blonde. The result is a natural-looking blonde balayage.

Balayage: Oway Hbleach Butter Cream Lightener + Oway Hcatalyst 20 Volume Cream Developer

Gloss: Oway Hcolor 90.11 Intense Ash Super Bleaching Blonde + Oway Hcolor 11.17 Frosted Platinum

Which ones are your favorite this week?

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