The Demand for Organic and Natural Foods in Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Is Rising

Learn how food ingredients are linked to sustainability and innovation in the health and beauty industries.

Consumer-Demand Drives Sustainability Into the Mainstream

From skin serums to body butters, foundations to mascaras, foods have been finding their way into people’s health and beauty regimens for decades. In the age of conscious consumerism, this once trendy niche is rapidly becoming the norm. Premium Beauty News cites a 2018 report published by EcoviaIntelligence as proof of this claim. “In Europe, sales of natural and organic cosmetics have grown at an average of +7% per year over the past five years and are expected to reach 5 billion euros by 2023.” The magazine goes on to highlight an astounding 18.7% year-over-year growth in sales of natural and organic cosmetics in the French market from 2017 to 2018. As the third biggest market for natural and organic cosmetics in the world, France’s 757 euro turnover in 2018 is exceeded only by Germany and the United States, which boasted 1.34 billion euros 4.32 billion euros respectively in sales for that same period.1

According to the Centre for the Promotion of Imports (CBI), sustainability’s move into the mainstream is at the root of these numbers. “Almost all large cosmetics companies have implemented sustainability programmes, many having ambitious targets to reduce their environmental impacts and become more resource efficient. [...] For natural ingredient suppliers, this means that cosmetics companies are requesting more information about their raw material supply chains.” Furthermore, CBI underlines corporate incentives for taking these measures. “Cosmetics companies also want to develop products that have low environmental impact and provide social benefits, which opens yet more opportunities. When suppliers can demonstrate their natural ingredients comply with buyer requirements in these areas, there are good possibilities for partnerships.” 

Mirroring behaviour we are witnessing in supermarkets, consumers in the beauty industry are paying increasing attention to clean labels, organic seals, and natural ingredients. As Sharon Laboratories aptly summarises, “What is healthy for your body is considered healthy for your skin.” Hence, the likes of shea butter, olive oil, and coconut oil are amongst some of the most common ingredients found in skincare products today. Likewise, foods surfacing in diet trends are also finding their way into shampoos and foundations. This holds especially true for superfoods, whose high antioxidant properties promise an array of anti-ageing benefits.2


Organic & Natural Certifications for Cosmetics Are Gaining Traction

A CBI market report claims that the most established certifications in the cosmetics industry today are ‘natural’ and ‘organic’. Obelis Group notes that for cosmetics to be labelled ‘organic’ in the EU, 90% or more of their ingredients must be organic. The term ‘natural’, on the other hand, is used for products containing natural ingredients or derivatives of natural ingredients, which can but do not necessarily have to be organic. Manufacturers can currently choose to certify their products by a range of different initiatives, most notably by the certification agencies COSMOS, NATURE, and ISO. CBI goes on to highlight that the cosmetics and personal care industry is also seeing schemes such as the Rainforest Alliance and Fairtrade trickle over from the food industry.3 Labels such as these have worked very hard to establish themselves as trustworthy seals with consumers in supermarkets. Thus, it is inevitable that they slowly but surely finding their way onto beauty and hygiene product packaging when food ingredients are involved.

These Brands Are Pioneering Natural Hygiene, Sustainable Skincare, and Beverages for the Body 

We see continuous innovation by formulators seeking to find exciting, new natural ingredients to grab customers’ attention. One such brand is Ben&Anna, which produces natural, vegan deodorants using a combination of sodium-bicarbonate and arrowroot-extract with a range of different natural oils, extracts, butters, and powders. The brand recently extended its product range to include a dental series featuring toothpaste and tooth powders made exclusively from natural ingredients, such as sea buckthorn, chamomile, activated charcoal, cinnamon, and calcium.

Green beauty shines a spotlight on the ingredients listed in products, while intentionally casting a shadow on those that are omitted. The sustainable skincare product manufacturer Drunk Elephant, for example, has pledged from day one to refrain from using what they classify as the ‘Suspicious 6’ (essential oils, drying alcohols, silicones, chemical sunscreens, fragrances/dyes, SLS) in any of their products. “It is equally, if not more, important what we leave out of the products as what we put in.” Drunk Elephant customers are thus able to gain awareness for potential red flags that can still be found in the vast majority of products on the market in the industry.

In a slightly different approach to skincare innovation, her1 is working, not with products that consumers apply to the skin, but by developing a line of dietary supplements designed to support the skin from inside the body. Ingredients in her1’s 100% natural and vegan supplements include everything from baobab and pea protein to lactic acid bacteria and the natural antioxidant oligomeric proanthocyanidin to facilitate the gut, brain, and skin health triad.

According to Deanna Utroske from it is not only the food industry but also the beverage industry is witnessing the surfacing of its ingredients in an increasing number of beauty and personal care products. Consumers can now shower in Petal Fresh Pure’s nut milks, with Jesse Jimz triple espresso shot eye cream, and hydrate their skin with Alkaglam's mineral facial mist with minerals that are attained from water.

100% Natural & Organic Ingredients at foodcircle

At foodcircle, we are committed to supplying only 100% organic ingredients for producers and manufacturers, regardless of whether they are utilised in the food industry or cosmetics and personal care industry. We are eager to partner with companies that strive for sustainability along the supply chain and use our ingredients in innovative, new ways. If you would like to inquire about ordering ingredients for your products, please reach out to our Sales Team.






Imagery courtesy of, Ben&Anna, and Drunk Elephant.

Magazine Highlights

Stay up-to-date on new products, prices, and industry insights.