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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Atlanta Cosmetic Companies Promote Organic Products

When it come to cosmetics, U.S. Food and Drug Administration says “An ingredient’s source does not determine its safety. For example, many plants, whether or not they are organically grown, contain substances that may be toxic or allergenic.”

Dr. Taz Bhatia, nationally known Atlanta integrative health expert and founder/medical director of the Atlanta Center for Holistic and Integrative Medicine, says, “I think the main thing to be concerned about with body care products and skin care products, especially for women, in part is a lot of chemicals they use are endocrine disruptors.”

There are many levels of organic cosmetics, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture: “100 Organic” means the product contains only organically grown ingredients (USDA seal may appear); “organic” denotes 95 percent organic ingredients, with restrictions placed on the remaining 5 percent (USDA seal may appear) and “made with organic ingredients,” designating 70 percent organic ingredients and 30 percent regulated non-organic.

WEB-LI-urbane-elements-boutiqueTiffany Roan was a pharmaceutical representative for 12 years before opening Urbane Elements Boutique, a Sandy Springs natural and organic cosmetics store. She often asks companies for research behind their claims before she puts them in her store. “You can have just a couple of natural ingredients and be able to slap ‘natural’ on your label,” sasaysid Roan. “That’s why it took me so long to research. I wanted them to be 100 percent natural.”

WEB-LI-iwi-fresh-yolanda-owensDowntown Atlanta’s IWI Fresh offers traditional spa services such as facials, messages, threading, waxing and mani/pedis, and specializes in raw food skin and body care. Founder and owner Yolanda Owens formulates the recipes for her masks, scrubs and cleansers with fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs that she sources from local Metro Atlanta farms.“Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and it absorbs anything you put on your skin,” she says. “To be able to take things straight form the garden and the farm and be able to apply all the nutrients, it’s going to be able to put nutrients into the blood stream. I call myself ‘the skincare chef,’ because I’m really passionate about making things from scratch.”

WEB-IMG_0674Lana Finley and Olga Ingram, of The Golden Phae Company, also make their own natural products, using global products such as sea buckthorn from Siberia. They offer skincare consultation and classes in Sandy Springs and Roswell. Finley and Ingram say that natural skincare works best, because our bodies cannot fully utilize chemicals.

“Chemicals can never be used by the skin to build new cells, because they are not ‘cell food,’” say Finley and Ingram. “The only things your skin cells can use to build more collagen are natural, because your cells are able to recognize the molecules, break them down into food sources (glucose), and then use them to support your collagen structures. In turn, you see less wrinkles, younger, brighter, newer skin and improved texture.”

WEB-LI-aviary-organic-beauty2Amy Bransford, owner of New Moon Skin Care and co-founder of Historic Fourth Ward’s Aviary Organic Beauty Collective, says, “I’ve been doing what I’ve been doing for a long time. I have clients that come in using skin products just riddled with ingredients not good for them or healthy for their skin. This movement to less-is-more is just really helpful to them in terms of detoxifying the skin and taking out the irritant that can be inflammatory.”

Bransford, along with Talk to the Hand Massage, formed Aviary in 2009 to offer everything from massage to anti-aging treatments and hair coloring. The only certified Dr. Hauschka esthetician listed in the Atlanta area, Bransford states that the collective strives to obtain products such as Davines and Sircuit that are as chemical-free as possible and have local relationships to farmers.

Being green doesn’t stop with the products for most of these Atlanta companies. Bransford is a board member of Atlanta’s Community Farmers’ Markets, and Aviary supports several local charities. IWI uses glass containers and offers a discount to customers that reuse and refill their containers, as does Golden Phae. Urbane Elements purchases only products manufactured in the USA.

Aviary Organic Beauty Collective, 659 Auburn Ave, Studio 125, Atlanta, 404-577-2460,

Urbane Elements Boutique, 230 Hammond Drive, #432, Sandy Springs, 404-217-9559,

IWI Fresh, 341 Nelson St, Atlanta, 404-577-8072,

The Golden Phae Company. 404-454-0940.

New Moon Skin Care, 659 Auburn Ave, Studio 125, Atlanta, 404-375-5457, Sarah A. Buehrle is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to Natural Awakenings Atlanta.

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