From environmental factors to health concerns, there are plenty of reasons to go organic these days, and it’s getting easier and easier to prioritize natural, earth-friendly products in your skin care regimen, too.

First things first: What does “organic” mean anyway? The truth is, there are still a lot of gray areas in this arena. For a cosmetic product to receive the USDA’s official “organic” seal, the ingredients in the product must follow the same rules for organic labeling as food – that is, the product must contain at least 95% organic ingredients.

Beyond that seal, though, there are very few regulations at play, leaving cosmetic companies free to use words like “organic,” “natural,” and “botanical” fairly liberally. This may soon change, as there are proposals for specific labeling of organic skin care products in the works. But for now, just remember that not all products are created equal – keep doing your research and reading those labels!

While not all of these products are “officially” organic, I think they achieve the most effective and responsible balance between prioritizing natural ingredients and offering real benefits for the skin:

Cleanser
Wash with Malin+Goetz Grapefruit Face Cleanser. The amino acids in grapefruit extract rinse away without residue, and the fragrance is all-natural and delicious!

If you have sensitive skin, though, you actually need to be more careful when dealing with organic and all-natural products – just because something occurs in nature doesn’t mean it won’t irritate delicate skin! I have very sensitive skin, and I love the Aveeno Ultra-Calming Cleanser with feverfew, a highly effective anti-inflammatory ingredient.

Daytime Moisturizer 
Stella McCartney’s 5 Benefits Moisturising Cream is a wonderful option for very dry skin – it’s packed with rich moisturizing agents like grape seed oil and linseed oil as well as powerful antioxidants like green tea and vitamin E. If your skin is normal to oily, though, Jurlique’s Clarifying Day Care Lotion has a lighter consistency.

Sunscreen
It’s hard to find a 100% organic sunscreen – and this is not an element of your regimen that you want to take any chances on. Korres Watermelon Sunscreen Face Cream SPF 30 contains moisture-rich shea butter and watermelon extract to keep skin soft and radiant while fighting UVA/UVB rays. DDF Daily Organic Sunscreen SPF 15 is another one of my favorites – it’s not a high enough SPF for prolonged sun exposure, but it’s an excellent option for daily protection.

Evening Moisturizer
At night, I still recommend that all my patients use a retinoid – and while retinoids and retinol are derived from vitamin A, they are not considered organic. There are no good substitutes yet, and this ingredient is too effective at improving skin’s texture, fighting acne, and minimizing lines and wrinkles to discontinue using it in favor of an organic night cream. Topix Replenix Retinol Plus Smoothing Serum 10X is a good option for most skin types.

Wishing you great skin!

By: Dr.Leslie Baumann