Monday, August 29, 2005

Frequently Asked Questions #7

Q. Are The Organic Make-up Company's products certified organic by USDA standards? Where is your product made?
A. All of our organic ingredients are certified by certification bodies that employ the USDA Standard. At this time there is much flux and change happening with the National Organics Program and the USDA and once all that has settled, we will move forward with certifying our finished products. We have been informed that the USDA certification for personal care items will be nullified as of the Fall 2005, so anyone carrying that label on personal care products will have to rescind it. OMC's certified organic ingredients are sourced from all over the world, but all our products are made in Canada.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Frequently Asked Questions #6

Q. Does The Organic Make-up Company test on animals or rely on suppliers who do? (i.e. Titanium Dioxide)
A. There has been extensive research done in the safety of many ingredients, titanium dioxide being one of them. The titanium dioxide available for purchase on the market today has not been tested on animals, since the safety testing was done years ago, in studies like we reference in the article. (Titanium Dioxide: Toxic or Safe?) Our company does not do any animal testing, and we purchase ingredients that have not been tested on animals according to CCIC guidelines. That does not mean that in various times in the past a substance, of which there are many that we use everyday, has not been tested on animals to determine their safety by governmental agencies or researchers in universities. Unfortunately, tests have been done on animals to determine the safety or Ti02 in the past.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Castor oil and your skin

Castor oil and your skin

     You may know of castor oil as a means of, well, relief from constipation. There’s just no nice way to say it. What you many not know is that castor oil has other uses too. In cosmetics and skin care, castor oil is used as an emollient to maintain soft and supple skin. It’s also an eco-friendly, biodegradable oil, that has many uses in our modern world.

Discovering castor oil

     Many oils come are produced from plants - the story behind castor oil is very similar. The seed of the Ricinus communis plant produces this versatile oil. Grown in many parts of the world, the seeds of the castor plant are often called “castor beans” because of their bean-like shape.

     Cold pressing is the process used to produce the oil. Before the pressing can take place, the husks of the seeds must be removed. Then, pressing the seeds between large stainless steel presses begins to produce the yellow-coloured oil. Cold pressing castor beans is the same process used to make products like olive oil, although the temperature used for cold pressing castor oil is slightly higher (<120°f).

Is castor oil safe?

     Commercially-prepared castor oil, whether organically grown or not, is safe for human use. The fear of castor oil stems from the husk of the seed, a part of the plant that is not used in the production of the oil itself (see above Discovering castor oil). What makes the husk of the seed a source of such fear for people? It is because the husk of the castor seed contains a component that is one of the most deadly poisons known to humans. The poison is called ricin and it causes death if it is eaten or inhaled. There is no known antidote for ricin poisoning and death occurs after three to five days. However, the use of castor oil in products like cosmetics, coatings, plastics, personal items, inks and lubricants is increasingly popular.

What about in cosmetics?

     Castor oil has many properties that make it perfect for use in cosmetics. Grabbing moisture from the air and holding it close to the skin is one such use. Cosmetic manufacturers, like The Organic Make-up Company use castor oil as a humectant to keep moisture close to the skin’s surface due to its water-binding abilities. In certain cosmetic products, castor oil actually thickens the mixture allowing the ingredients to remain more stable.

     The gentleness of castor oil is another welcome characteristic. Unlike a number synthetic ingredients that irritate or cause inflammation of the skin, castor oil is considered gentle. Skin irritations or allergic reactions do not often occur with the use of castor oil which makes it a prime choice for makers of cosmetics.

     So, with such a variety of uses for this natural oil, you can cast aside your fears of castor oil. Whether it’s used in cosmetics or other skin care products, castor oil provides quality protection for your skin to keep it healthy.

[1] The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001. Accessed at
[1], accessed June 24, 2005.
[1], accessed June 25, 2005.
[1], accessed June 25, 2005.[1], accessed June 27, 2005.

Frequently Asked Questions #5

Q. Where does the titanium dioxide that is used in The Organic Make-up Company's products come from?
A. Tio2 is common all over the world, but generally it comes from Australia, India or S. Africa. (confirm with for the exact supplier)

Frequently Asked Questions #4

Q. Are The Organic Make-up Company's products phalate-free?
A. OMC does not use phalates in its products.