Is That Body Wash Drying Out Your Skin?

A deep look into this sneaky cause of dry skin, and what you can do about it

Imagine you’ve just taken a hot bath. It smelled like something fresh, yet unidentifiable. You lathered up, washed off, and you’re ready to grab the towel.

However, when you get out, you notice your skin feels tight. You haven’t even dried off yet, but already you see white flecks on your arms and face.

Your first move is to reach for the moisturizer. Your second is to switch to organic body wash.

Dry skin could be caused by the weather or even genetics, but more often than not, it’s exacerbated by the kind of body wash you’re using.

Traditional body wash contains harsh detergents and synthetic fragrances, which rob your skin of moisture. Read on to find out why companies use these chemicals, what ingredients to avoid, and receive a few recommendations to get the slick back in your skin.

Signs You Should Make the Switch to Organic Body Wash

Dry skin isn’t typically a serious condition. However, chronic dry skin can lead to itching, discomfort, and wrinkles down the line. You can improve dry skin by using moisturizers and avoiding soaps with harsh, drying chemicals.

Signs you may need to switch to organic body wash routine include:

  • Gray, ashy skin
  • Rough patches of skin
  • White flecks (dead skin cells)
  • That tight feeling after showering
  • Fine lines, cracks, or wrinkles
  • Redness and irritation
  • Itching
  • Flaking
  • Skin moisture not lasting, even after moisturizing

What’s in Non-Organic Body Wash?

Traditional or non-organic body wash contains surfactants and synthetic fragrances that can be tough on your skin. These surfactants are so powerful that they wipe away all oil from your skin, including your body’s natural oil that exists to protect your skin. As a result, your body begins to produce excess oil, resulting in shiny, oily skin. It’s a vicious cycle, but you can stop it by switching to organic body wash.

Below are 3 skin-drying ingredients to avoid in body wash.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)

Body wash brands know that you feel cleaner when you use a soap that lathers and foams. SLS and SLES are detergents added to body wash and face wash to give you that foamy-clean feeling. However, these two chemical culprits dry out and even damage your skin. That satisfying foaming effect isn’t worth the numerous issues associated with dry skin.

Propylene Glycol (PG) and Butylene Glycol

Propylene glycol and butylene glycol are often found in their liquid states in big brand body wash. They act as surfactants, drawing away both bad and good natural oils and moisture from your skin. However, these two chemicals work by weakening the protein and cellular structure of your skin to penetrate deeply – too deeply. The result is dead, flaky skin.

Polyethylene Glycol (PEG)

Used as a thickening agent in body washes, PEG is an effect oil and grease dissolver – but extremely demoisturizing to your skin.

In all the above cases, the chemical ingredients exist essentially for marketing purposes. They foam, lather, and thicken to give a product a specific texture. However, they do nothing positive for your skin!

Why Is Organic Body Wash More Gentle?

Organic body wash contains ingredients that don’t undergo as much processing. This means that the organic ingredients maintain their natural moisturizing effects. There is simply no need to add harsh chemicals or synthetic fragrances.

Furthermore, brands that manufacture organic body wash don’t need to sell their customers on the touch and feel of the soap. They sell organic body wash on the fact that it contains no harmful ingredients and is safer for you and the planet. What better marketing tactic is there than the truth?

Gentle Ingredients Found in Organic Body Wash

Coco Betaine and Sodium Coco Sulfate

Coco betaine and sodium coco sulfate are both coconut derived. If you’ve researched the amazing skin benefits you can get with organic coconut oil, you know how moisturizing this surfactant can be.

Soap Berries & Soapwort

The most hardcore organic body wash brands use these natural plant-based surfactants because they require zero processing. As a result, soap berries and soapwort don’t foam and lather the way you may be used to. However, they get their name because they are naturally, well, soap-like. They are amazing all-natural carrying agents for cleansers and vitamins added to organic body wash.

Coco Glucoside, Decyl Glucoside & Lauryl Glucoside

These three mild cleansers have been minimally processed. Sure, they still sound like chemical names, but “gluco” means sugar. These sugar-based alternatives act as surfactants, providing that same satisfying foam and lather you’ve come to love. Furthermore, they are all completely biodegradable.

Staff Picks: 3 Organic Body Wash Recommendations

Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap

Vegan, Leaping Bunny Cruelty-Free, Certified Fair Trade, Non-GMO, Tilth Organic

Dr. Bronner’s has been crafting eco-friendly organic body wash and other household soaps since 1948. Their ingredients are so versatile that they actually suggest using this organic body wash on pets, hair, face, laundry, and dishes.

This almond scented organic body wash includes no synthetic preservatives, detergents, or foaming agents. It is made with a number of organic oils to keep your skin moisturized, such as coconut oil, palm kernel oil, olive oil, hemp oil, and jojoba oil. All ingredients are certified fair trade and the waste is entirely biodegradable.

Avalon Organics’ Organic Body Wash

Vegan, Leaping Bunny Cruelty-Free, USDA Organic

Looking for a natural remedy to dry skin? Get the moisture your skin craves with Avalon Organics’ coconut based organic body wash. This formula uses coconut oil, aloe vera, vitamin E and botanical cleansers to clean and rehydrate your skin. This product naturally smells like toasted coconut.

Desert Essence Fragrance-Free Organic Body Wash

Sustainable, Organic, Leaping Bunny Cruelty-Free, Certified B-Corp Corporation, Certified Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)

Founded in 1978, Desert Essence strives to harmonize natural beauty with environmental sustainability. As a certified B-Corp Corporation, this brand meets the highest standards of social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability.

Their organic body wash is free of artificial colors and fragrances. A sugar and coconut-based organic body wash, this product contains organic aloe vera and green tea to moisturize, soothe, and nourish your skin. Want to smell as good as you feel? Desert Essence suggests adding your favorite essential oil to this body wash.

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