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Welcome to the
#Soko Skincare Report: The Clean Beauty Edition


Clean beauty just like clean eating is a subjective term that has a multitude of different meanings depending on who you ask.

 

With no set definition or standard in place, clean beauty (similar to terms like natural, organic, green and even eco-friendly) may be misleading given the overall consensus is to omit ingredients that may be harmful to your skin and body - yet some of the ingredients we are told to eliminate have yet to be tested for safety and efficacy.

 

The root of this cause solely lies within the hands of the Federal Drug, Food and Administration (FDA). The FDA doesn't require beauty products or ingredients to be approved before they go on the market, except for a few exceptions like color additives since it is not intended for use as coal tar hair dyes and the recent addition of sunscreens and acne medications since they are considered to be medicated drugs.

 

Now its not to say that all beauty products are unsafe, but it can cause concern for those that are a bit more cognitive and mindful into choosing the right products and the right ingredients that their skin is exposed to.

 

Clean beauty just like clean eating is a subjective term that has a multitude of different meanings depending on who you ask. With no set definition or standard in place, clean beauty (similar to terms like natural, organic, green and even eco-friendly) may be misleading given the overall consensus is to omit ingredients that may be harmful to your skin and body - yet some of the ingredients we are told to eliminate have yet to be tested for safety and efficacy.

 

The root of this cause solely lies within the hands of the Federal Drug, Food and Administration (FDA). The FDA doesn't require beauty products or ingredients to be approved before they go on the market, except for a few exceptions like color additives since it is not intended for use as coal tar hair dyes and the recent addition of sunscreens and acne medications since they are considered to be medicated drugs.

 

Now its not to say that all beauty products are unsafe, but it can cause concern for those that are a bit more cognitive and mindful into choosing the right products and the right ingredients that their skin is exposed to.

Clean Beauty making an impact globally

The clean beauty trend has also taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called microdust. Microdust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

 

Korean women do not hesitate to stand in the middle of H&B stores (Korean drugstores) to read the ingredient labels on the back of products – and even enjoy it. Many people use HwaHae, an app with over a million monthly users that conveniently let’s you analyze ingredients in specific products and read authentic reviews.

Clean Beauty making an impact globally

The clean beauty trend has also taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called microdust. Microdust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

 

Korean women do not hesitate to stand in the middle of H&B stores (Korean drugstores) to read the ingredient labels on the back of products – and even enjoy it. Many people use HwaHae, an app with over a million monthly users that conveniently let’s you analyze ingredients in specific products and read authentic reviews.

Clean Beauty making an impact globally

The clean beauty trend has also taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called microdust. Microdust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

 

Korean women do not hesitate to stand in the middle of H&B stores (Korean drugstores) to read the ingredient labels on the back of products – and even enjoy it. Many people use HwaHae, an app with over a million monthly users that conveniently let’s you analyze ingredients in specific products and read authentic reviews.


Welcome to the
#Soko Skincare Report: The Clean Beauty Edition


Clean beauty just like clean eating is a subjective term that has a multitude of different meanings depending on who you ask.

 

With no set definition or standard in place, clean beauty (similar to terms like natural, organic, green and even eco-friendly) may be misleading given the overall consensus is to omit ingredients that may be harmful to your skin and body - yet some of the ingredients we are told to eliminate have yet to be tested for safety and efficacy.

 

The root of this cause solely lies within the hands of the Federal Drug, Food and Administration (FDA). The FDA doesn't require beauty products or ingredients to be approved before they go on the market, except for a few exceptions like color additives since it is not intended for use as coal tar hair dyes and the recent addition of sunscreens and acne medications since they are considered to be medicated drugs.

 

Now its not to say that all beauty products are unsafe, but it can cause concern for those that are a bit more cognitive and mindful into choosing the right products and the right ingredients that their skin is exposed to.

 

Clean Beauty making an impact globally

The clean beauty trend has also taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called microdust. Microdust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

 

Korean women do not hesitate to stand in the middle of H&B stores (Korean drugstores) to read the ingredient labels on the back of products – and even enjoy it. Many people use HwaHae, an app with over a million monthly users that conveniently let’s you analyze ingredients in specific products and read authentic reviews.

What's Clean Beauty?

 

Clean beauty just like clean eating is a subjective term that has a multitude of different meanings depending on who you ask. With no set definition or standard in place, clean beauty may be misleading given the overall consensus is to omit ingredients that may be harmful to your skin and body - yet some of the ingredients we are told to eliminate have yet to be tested for safety and efficacy.

 

The root of this cause solely lies within the hands of the Federal Drug, Food and Administration (FDA). The FDA doesn't require beauty products or ingredients to be approved before they go on the market, except for a few exceptions like color additives (since it is not intended for use as coal tar hair dyes) and the recent addition of sunscreens and acne medications since they are considered to be medicated drugs.

 

Now it's not to say that all beauty products are unsafe, but it can cause concern for those that are a bit more cognitive and mindful into choosing the right products and ingredients that your skin is exposed to.

Clean Beauty Making a Global Impact

The clean beauty trend has even taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called micro dust. Micro dust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

Clean Beauty making an impact globally

The clean beauty trend has also taken off in Korea as well, largely as a response to something called microdust. Microdust is a form of air pollution and is a major issue in South Korea right now. The government frequently issues warnings about high dust levels and encourages people to wear masks when outside. In addition to posing a serious general health risk, the poor air quality also affects the health and appearance of the skin. More and more women in Korea are searching for cleaner and non-irritating choices for their skin as well as their body.

 

Korean women do not hesitate to stand in the middle of H&B stores (Korean drugstores) to read the ingredient labels on the back of products – and even enjoy it. Many people use HwaHae, an app with over a million monthly users that conveniently let’s you analyze ingredients in specific products and read authentic reviews.

Clean at Soko Glam

At Soko Glam we define clean beauty as being a trend suitable for your lifestyle. Clean beauty is about prioritizing the source of the ingredient and incorporating natural ingredients that are studied to be efficacious and safe for your body.  

 

While any product can be marked “clean”, a true clean product for Soko Glam are ones that are free-of artificial fragrance, mineral oil, parabens, sulfates (SLS and SLES) and artificial coloring. To get our ‘free-of’ list just right we relied solely upon you (our community) to let help us determine the types of ingredients you are looking to eliminate when making the transition to a cleaner lifestyle.

Clean at Soko Glam

At Soko Glam we define clean beauty as being a trend suitable for your lifestyle. Clean beauty is about prioritizing the source of the ingredient and incorporating natural ingredients that are studied to be efficacious and safe for your body.  

 

While any product can be marked “clean”, a true clean product for Soko Glam are ones that are free of artificial fragrance, mineral oil, parabens, sulfates (SLS and SLES) and artificial coloring. And to get our ‘free-of’ list just right we relied solely upon you (our community) to let help us determine the types of ingredients you are looking to eliminate when making the transition to a cleaner lifestyle.

PARABENS

What is it?

Parabens are popular preservatives that are included in about 85 percent of all cosmetics and toiletries to control the growth of microbes. They essentially make sure your skin care products don’t grow mold on them. You’ll find them in ingredient lists with the ending “-paraben” and the most common ones are methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben.

Why is it controversial?

Parabens are commonly used thanks to the fact that they can preserve most products effectively. However, parabens are also considered to be the bad boys of the beauty world (due in part to a flawed study that claimed parabens are linked to cancer), but many skin experts will tell you that the negative perception is misguided.

Final Words

According to the FDA, there is “no information showing that parabens as they are used in cosmetics have an effect on human health.” It’s also important to keep in mind that products need preservative, otherwise many of your skin care products within days will likely grow mold, fungus and bacteria. So if a product claims to be “paraben-free”, it is likely formulated with another natural preservative that consumers just haven’t heard of yet. However, since there have been new alternatives to parabens to safely preserve skin care products, we’ve excluded parabens from the clean beauty collection.

MINERAL OIL

What is it?

Mineral oil is a natural by-product of petroleum. It’s created when petroleum is distilled to become gasoline. It’s the same as “petroleum jelly,” which has been a mainstay in U.S. homes for many years by way of creams and lotions, as well as Vaseline and baby oil.

Why is it controversial?

On one hand, some say that mineral oil is natural, and they herald it for being non-comedogenic and effective. On the opposite end of the spectrum, some argue that because it’s a by-product of petroleum, it shouldn’t be applied to the skin and that you’re better off using something different.

In other words, you cannot count on mineral oil to meet all your skin’s hydration needs. It simply keeps existing moisture intact and blocks out other elements.

Final Words

At the end of the day, mineral oil does have some merit and shouldn't be regarded as unsafe.

Since the main controversy behind mineral oil is its origin, there are alternative options like avocado oil, cocoa/shea butter and wax esters that can help meet your skins hydration needs.

ARTIFICIAL FRAGRANCE

What is it?

Fragrance is so commonly added to products that you must actively go out of your way to find some that are “fragrance free.” Fragrances are used to make a product smell better (obviously) and sometimes to mask the unpleasant smell of other ingredients. Some common fragrance ingredients you’ll see on products include: fragrance or parfum (catch-all terms that are somewhat controversial), essential oils, and linalool (a component of essential oils).

Why is it controversial?

The source or origin for artificial fragrance isn’t clearly identified and as a result is lumped into one vague bucket as being a “Fragrance” or “Parfum”.

Final Words

It’s possible to find natural sources of fragrance from other natural sources, such as essential oils, which is why we chose to eliminate artificial fragrance from the Clean Beauty collection.

SULPHATES

What is it?

SLS and SLES are common ingredients which create foam and bubbles and can commonly be found in cleansers, shampoos and toothpastes, that gives them their cleaning properties. They are cosmetic detergents that degrease and remove oil from the hair and skin.

Why is it controversial?

SLS and SLES are very good—basically too good—at removing oil from your skin, leading to stripped, irritated, and overly dry skin. It’s also good at getting into your skin and sticking to the proteins inside it, causing even more irritation and dehydration.

 

On the other hand SLS and SLES in high concentrations can irritate to your eyes, skin, mouth and lungs and for people with sensitive skin, these sulfates may also clog pores and cause acne.

Final Words

If SLS or SLES is low on the ingredients list it may not be an issue, but if your skin is feeling dry or dehydrated it may be time to switch to an SLS/SLES-free cleanser.


There are lots of cleansers that are gentle and made without SLS or SLES. It should also be noted that there have been multiple studies done which have determined that SLS isn’t bad for you, it just sensitizes your skin. So, if you aren’t someone who struggles with sensitive skin, SLS may not be an issue for you at all! As always, patch test, and if your skin seems to be fine, you probably don’t have a sensitivity to SLS.

ARTIFICIAL COLORS

What is it?

Artificial colors are chemical additives that can change the coloring of product. They serve no other purpose then to change the color of a product and make it more appealing for the consumer.

Why is it controversial?

Because in some cases artificial colors can be made from coal tar or petroleum which can be contaminated with heavy metals such as lead and arsenic, artificial coloring has been a controversial ingredient in skincare as it has been linked to cause allergies, skin sensitives and irritation.

Final Words

If you want avoid artificial colours look for things like “colourant”, CI 26100, F&DC 6, Red 1, Blue 3 and Yellow 6. Some brands even use fruit and other naturally derived colors in their products as alternatives.

 

Korean brands have even been working hard to provide the most natural skincare they can—that is, without adding artificial colorings and fragrance. Sometimes this means leaving the extracts in its natural state in the formulation process, no matter how unconventional it may be.

PARABENS

What is it?

Parabens are popular preservatives that are included in about 85 percent of all cosmetics and toiletries to control the growth of microbes. They essentially make sure that your skin care products don’t grow mold on them.

You’ll find them in ingredient lists with the ending “-paraben” and the most common ones are methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben.

Why is it controversial?

Parabens are considered to be the bad boys of the beauty world, due in part to a flawed study in 2004 by scientists at the University of Reading that claimed parabens are linked to breast cancer.

However many skin experts will tell you that the negative perception is misguided since there was no concrete linkage between parabens and breast cancer.

Final Words

According to the FDA, there is “no information showing that parabens as they are used in cosmetics have an effect on human health.”

It’s also important to keep in mind that products need preservatives, otherwise many of your skin care products within days will likely grow mold, fungus and bacteria.

So if a product claims to be “paraben-free”, it is likely formulated with other natural preservative that consumers just haven’t heard of yet (ie. phenoxyethanol, sodium benzoate and benzyl alcohol).

MINERAL OIL

What is it?

Mineral oil is a common ingredient found in skincare products due to its ability to prevent moisture loss. It’s been a mainstay in U.S. homes for many years by way of creams and lotions, as well as Vaseline and baby oil.

  • You’ll find them in the ingredients list labeled as “mineral oils”, but additional ingredients that are a part of the petroleum family include Paraffin, Microcrystalline Wax, Cera Microcrystalline, Petrolatum, Unspecified Waxes, Petroleum, Distillates and more.

 

Why is it controversial?

On one hand, some say that mineral oil is natural, and they herald it for being non-comedogenic and effective. On the opposite end of the spectrum, some argue that because it’s a by-product of petroleum (created when petroleum is distilled to become gasoline), it shouldn’t be applied to the skin and that you’re better off using a safer alternative.

You also cant count on mineral oil to meet all your skin’s hydration needs since it simply keeps existing moisture intact and blocks out other elements

Final Words

At the end of the day, mineral oil does have some merit and shouldn't be regarded as unsafe.

Since the main controversy behind mineral oil is its origin, there are alternative options like avocado oil, cocoa/shea butter and wax esters that can help meet your skins hydration needs. 

ARTIFICIAL FRAGRANCE

What is it?

Artificial fragrances are used to make a product smell better and is sometimes used to mask the unpleasant smell of other ingredients.

You’ll find them in the ingredients list labeled fragrance or parfum (catch-all terms that are somewhat controversial).

Why is it controversial?

The source or origin for artificial fragrance isn’t clearly identified and as a result is typically lumped into one vague bucket as being either a “Fragrance” or “Parfum”.

Final Words

If you are concerned about the origin of artificial fragrances, it's possible to find natural sources of fragrance from other natural sources like essential oils, flowers, fruits, grasses, seeds, bark, wood and roots.

SULFATES

What is it?

SLS and SLES are common ingredients which create foam and bubbles and can commonly be found in cleansers, shampoos and toothpastes to give products their cleaning properties, that help degrease and remove oil from the hair and skin.

Why is it controversial?

SLS and SLES are very good—basically too good—at removing oil from your skin, getting into your skin and sticking to the proteins inside it, which has been linked to cause skin sensitivities.

Final Words

There have been multiple studies done which have determined that SLS and SLES aren't bad for you, other then just sensitizing your skin.

So, if you aren’t someone who struggles with sensitive skin, SLS/SLES may not be an issue for you at all! As always, patch test, and if your skin seems to be fine, you probably don’t have a sensitivity to SLS/SLES.

ARTIFICIAL COLORS

What is it?

Artificial colors are chemical additives that can change the coloring of product. They serve no other purpose then to make a product look more appealing for the consumer.

You’ll find them in ingredient lists labeled as “colourant”, CI 26100, F&DC 6, Red 1, Blue 3 and Yellow 6.

Why is it controversial?

Since artificial colors can be made from coal tar or petroleum which can be contaminated with heavy metals such as lead and arsenic, artificial coloring has been a controversial ingredient in skincare.

Final Words

    • In some cases since the source of artificial coloring is unknown, if you are concerned with the origin of where artificial coloring is derived from, we recommend looking for alternative ingredients such as; fruit, plants, herbs and naturally derived colors.
    •  

Clean at Soko Glam Collection

As more and more of our community look for skincare brands that are free of certain ingredients, we’ve decided to curate a Clean at Soko Glam collection to make your shopping experience easier and more transparent for those interested in clean beauty products. We've created this collection as a resource for you to make more informed choices for your skin. And as our clean movement continues to grow, we’ll keep adding more and more skincare brands to our clean beauty collection.

Clean at Soko Glam Collection

As more and more of our community look for skincare brands that are free of certain ingredients, we’ve decided to curate a Clean at Soko Glam collection to make your shopping experience easier and more transparent for those interested in clean beauty products. We've created this collection as a resource for you to make more informed choices for your skin. And as our clean movement continues to grow, we’ll keep adding more and more skincare brands to our clean beauty collection.