Using oils to cleanse oily, congested skin. Sounds a little bit like rubbing soil into your jeans to get the grass stains out right? Dubious? I was slightly confused about this cleansing method too, so I set out to find out just why oil cleansing not only works, but has plenty of devotees the world over. Firstly: not all oils are created equal. In my head, ‘oil’ could mean anything from the contents of the vat my fish supper was fried in to the contents of the sump in my car. It’s certainly a broad definition: an oil is a hydrophobic substance that is usually liquid at room temperature. Although it will not mix with water, it blends easily with other oils. Oil can come from animals, plants or chemical processes. Also, it comes from our skin!

An oil dropper of siam botanicals facial serum

Use natural oils to work with your skin

Having been exposed to decades of marketing intended to encourage me to buy harsh astringent chemical products, I’ve been wary of embracing my skin’s natural oils. Don’t they cause breakouts? Well, the short answer is no! Our skin has evolved to take care of itself perfectly well. The oils it makes are what keep it hydrated, help to heal minor wounds and keep infections at bay. The problem with this harmonious system comes when we expose our skin to environmental factors that disrupt this balance, such as polluted air, makeup or chemical irritants. If skin isn’t properly cleansed, these beneficial natural oils can clog our pores and when trapped lead to blackheads, blemishes, and unhappy skin.

Using harsh chemical cleansers will strip the oils from your skin. It’s true! They will! But they will strip all the good away along with the bad, and can lead to irritations, rashes, dryness and …you guessed it… unhappy skin.

But what if we were to use a natural oil, with antibacterial properties, that was similar in consistency and chemical make up to the sebum made by our own skins? Well, the oil cleanser gently mixes with – and lifts out – dirt and oil from your pores, leaving them cleansed without drying, working in harmony with your skin’s own amazing self-regenerative properties.

apricots ripe on the tree

Apricot kernel oil is rich in essential fatty acids, and a sustainable by-product

Siam Botanicals’ COSMOS Organic Apricot Facial Cleansing oil has been carefully blended with oils of castor seed, sweet almond, apricot kernel and black caraway seed. Used daily in conjuction with a face cloth and hot water, this oil cleanser will care for oily skin, removing impurities and congestion without upsetting the skin’s delicate balance. Simply massage the cleanser into dry skin (no eye make-up remover required either) and then soak your face cloth in hot water, drape over your face and allow your pores to open. Then simply wipe away: the cleanser, impurities, stress and makeup. Intended to be used before bed: the added bonus being that a quick splash of warm water is all that’s required in the mornings!

Castor seed oil is a key ingredient: it has been traditionally recognised for its antiseptic and astringent properties. Although it feels quite a heavy oil in the hand, it’s actually very similar to the skin’s own oils and as a result is a highly effective deep cleanser.

Siam Botanicals Rosehip and teatree oil cleanser

Hydrating and cleansing: Rosehip and Teatree oil cleanser

Do you have drier skin that needs a little more hydration? Try our COSMOS Organic Rosehip and Tea Tree oil cleanser. Rosehip oil is naturally moisturising: blended with olive fruit oil and just the right proportion of Tea Tree oil, this cleanser will gently remove impurities whilst controlling and reducing blemishes thanks to it’s naturally antibacterial properties. Of course when you use either of our oil cleansers you can rest assured that our premium organic ingredients are working with your skin to support its own natural systems.

Moringa has been cultivated as a food and beauty crop for over 5000 years and is native to the tropics, especially India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. The leaves, pods and seeds are all edible and highly nutritious – so much so that the dried leaves are used to combat malnutrition in poorer areas. It’s known colloquially as the ‘miracle tree’. I thought that was quite a claim, so I set out to find out why!

Siam Botanicals' Argan and Moringa Face Polish

Siam Botanical’s Argan and Moringa face polish contains Moringa oil for happy skin

The answer partly involved free radicals. Free radicals are not an obscure garage band from 1975, but oxidative compounds inside your body that are both by-products of your own metabolism but also cause by pollution and other environmental factors. They can cause damage to DNA which in turn can accelerate the visible effects of the ageing process and even cause chronic illness. The best way to reduce the impact of free radicals is to provide your body with plenty of antioxidants – which can be found in fresh fruit and vegetables and plenty of other plant-based sources. This is where we get to the “miracle tree”. Raw moringa oil, derived from pressing the seeds, combines a whopping 46 separate antioxidants. It is one of the most concentrated natural sources of oleic acid, Vitamin A and Vitamin C, which boosts the production of collagen and helps to keep free radicals in check!

Moringa, or Drumstick tree, in blossom

Moringa, or Drumstick tree, in blossom

Moringa oil – also known as ben oil – has been traditionally used for its moisturising, cleansing, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, so any minor breakouts or blackheads will be soothed away. Happily, moringa produces a light oil that your skin will drink happily with no greasy residue. Our single-ingredient cold pressed Organic Moringa Oil is great for face, hands and nails, keeping skin nourished and cuticles soft. If your skin is struggling a little with the pressures and pollution of city life, our Replenish facial serum contains moringa and argan oils as well as juniper seed and grapefruit oils to cleanse and purify. We have always known it was great, but it was lovely to hear that it had been commended in the 2019 Beauty Shortlist awards!

Siam Botanicals Replenish facial serum

Siam Botanicals’ award-winning Replenish formula facial oil

April saw Siam Botanicals exhibiting at another show, this time in London. The event, which is called Natural & Organic Products (it also takes place in Hong Kong in August and in Sweden in November), not only showcases a host of big brands and start-up beauty companies but also Fairtrade/sustainable/organic food and drink products, and natural healthcare and household products. There were about 600 exhibitors and thousands of trade-only visitors.

Tamar, the owner of Siam Botanicals, flew over from Thailand and I joined her to man (or should I say woman?) the stand. I think you’ll agree that it looked rather lovely. People were definitely drawn to the lush Thai backdrop – a moment of escapism!

Natural & Organic Products: the Siam Botanicals stand

Natural & Organic Products: the Siam Botanicals stand

Natural & Organic Products: the Siam Botanicals stand

Lots of lovely stock, now available in the UK!

It was interesting to see what appealed to European buyers – they were particularly attracted to the more unusual or typically Asian ingredients such as rice bran oil, guava oil and moringa oil, and those scents that are commonly associated with Thailand – lemongrass, ginger and plai (all of which feature in our signature Siam Roots range of products). Visitors liked to be able to smell the pure oils – especially our guava oil, which was new to everyone we spoke to and was universally liked for its wonderful fruity smell.

Natural & Organic Products show - guava oil

It smells soooo good!

Natural & Organic Products show - rice bran oil

It wasn’t just this lady who loved the scent of our cooling rice bran oil with a hint of peppermint

Of course, people were very interested in the fact that our products have now received the COSMOS-standard stamp of approval from BDIH and are now proudly wearing their COSMOS Natural and COSMOS Organic badges! More on this in a separate post…

Natural & Organic Products: the Siam Botanicals stand

We enjoyed introducing our products to the UK market and made some interesting contacts, which we will be growing and nurturing over the coming months! The event also allowed us to meet in person several people we’ve been following on Facebook and Twitter for some time, including natural beauty and eczema/allergy blogger Sugarpuffish, Alex from Skins Matter (a great resource for resource for natural beauty and ‘free from’ skincare), and Lynda, otherwise known as Wonderlusting, who writes a great blog about ‘products and places that inspire wonder and lust’ – well worth a read!

We were also pleased to catch a seminar about the latest trends in innovative beauty ingredients by Rebecca Goodyear, another Twitter friend. And we were very encouraged to see that a talk on ‘How Asian skincare trends are taking off in Europe’ gathered a good crowd. As far as we could see, we were the only Asian skincare company at the show (correct me if I’m wrong), so we feel confident that there’s still a gap in the UK market for our 100% natural Thai brand.

Were you at the show? Did you visit our stand? Let us know your thoughts!

Why use natural skincare?

Or, put another way, ‘Why NOT use natural skincare?!’

 Gone are the days when ‘going natural’ was something reserved only for the seriously dedicated environmentalist. No longer does it require deep pockets and a heavy dose of compromise. It’s a choice that’s more accessible than ever, and offers many advantages to the user.

There are lots of claims flying around the internet about dangerous chemicals being absorbed into the body, most of which are unhelpful, misleading or downright wrong. Here at Siam Botanicals, we’re not interested scaremongering. We simply believe that natural skincare products are best, not only because they DON’T contain artificial chemicals but, even more importantly, because they DO contain botanical ingredients that offer benefits not found in synthetic alternatives.

Take lavender essential oil, for example: we choose it because it has antiseptic and antibacterial properties, it tones and revitalises the skin and can help to ease headaches and muscular pain. The fact that is also smells fabulous is an important added bonus! Synthetic lavender fragrance, on the other hand, is not only a poor imitation of the real thing; it also offers absolutely no benefit to the user. Its only purpose is to make the product smell of lavender (sort of) – and, of course, to save money.

At Siam Botanicals we’re committed to the responsible sourcing of top-quality natural skincare ingredients that deliver results. Look at our ingredients list – we use only cold pressed oils and herb, flower and fruit extracts. No synthetic chemicals, no artificial preservatives. Despite this, our products have an average shelf life of 18 months. And why would you want them to last any longer than that?

You don’t need to have undergone some kind of Damascene conversion to a super-green way of life in order to choose our natural skincare products. Choose them for exactly the same reasons you might consider another brand: because they smell gorgeous, they make you feel good and they WORK! The fact that they’re 100% natural and environmentally safe is the icing on the cake.

SIAM BOTANICALS – ABOUT US

We believe in the power of nature. That’s why we created Siam Botanicals, an honest brand of natural face care, skincare and personal care products.

We guarantee that our products are made with the finest-quality natural ingredients. We’re committed to responsible sourcing and work with local suppliers wherever possible. We also make a conscious effort to keep our packaging simple to minimize our impact on the planet.

Our face care, skincare and aromatherapy ranges are 100% natural – that means they are completely free from synthetic chemicals, colors and fragrances. Our premium personal care products are formulated with aloe vera juice and cold pressed oils. They contain no synthetic detergents, preservatives, colorants or fragrances. It is our policy to be completely transparent about the ingredients we use. Take a look at our website – we list everything that goes into our products because we have nothing to hide.

By combining age-old ingredients with scientific know-how, we have succeeded in creating a simple but highly effective range of unisex products to suit all skin types. Every formula is hand blended in small batches, to ensure that our exceptionally high standards are faithfully replicated in each pot, bottle and bar.

Our range includes premium face care, massage and body oils, balms, bath salts, solid perfumes, soaps and shampoos. So whether you’re looking to rejuvenate and revitalize, tone and tighten, soothe and soften or simply pamper and preen, we’re sure to have the perfect product for you.

WHY NATURAL?

If you find a high-performing skin, face and haircare range that happens to use the purest ingredients possible, why wouldn’t you choose it? If it delivers results while at the same time being sustainable and responsibly sourced, why say no? As our loyal customers around the world will testify, our products work. The fact that they’re natural and environmentally safe is the icing on the cake.

We simply believe that natural skincare products are best,

not only because they don’t contain artificial chemicals but, even more importantly, because they do contain botanical ingredients that offer benefits not found in synthetic alternatives.

COSMOS organic logoCOSMOS Natural certificationCOSMOS CERTIFICATION

Many of our products carry the COSMOS-standard certification, which means they meet the rigorous requirements set by BDIH, COSMEBIO, ECOCERT, ICEA and SOIL ASSOCIATION for organic and natural cosmetics. Look out for the logos on our packaging!