Originally published January 14 2008
Golden Path Alchemy Launches Line of Truly Natural Botanical Skin Care Products Containing Zero Chemical Additives
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor
(NaturalNews) In my continued search for healthful skin care products, I'm usually disappointed by products that claim to be "natural" or "herbal." Nearly everything on the market today -- including the skin care products sold at "natural" retailers like Whole Foods and Wild Oats -- is loaded with chemical additives and harmful ingredients. It's rare to find a company that makes genuinely healthful products for skin care. Pangea Organics (www.PangeaOrganics.com) is one such company that I've recommended for some time, and I recently found a new company from California that takes skin care products to a whole new medicinal level: Their products use herbs from the world of Chinese Medicine to enhance health while nourishing the skin.
The company is called Golden Path Alchemy (www.GoldenPathAlchemy.com), and it's a very small company that still makes everything by hand. I've reviewed their products and highly recommend them to anyone wanting truly healthful skin care products, without all the chemical garbage normally found in many so-called "natural" skin care products. They don't have a shopping cart on their website, so you'll have to call or e-mail them directly to order. Contact details are listed on their website: www.GoldenPathAlchemy.com
I sat down with the founders of this company for a chat. What follows is the transcription:
Mike: This is Mike Adams, the Health Ranger with NaturalNews.com. I am here with Ashley Beckman of Golden Path Alchemy who has a unique line of natural skin care and personal care products. This company is brand new, only three months old. Thanks for joining me today Ashley. Tell us about what you have here and why it is unique and interesting to the natural health marketplace.
Ashley: Sure, we have a whole line of botanical alchemy products. We use a blend of essential oils that are therapeutic grade certified. We use Chinese herbs, western herbs, flower essences, gem elixirs and our flower essences are mostly Indian orchids, so they have a really high frequency. All of our products can be eaten and they are food for the skin.
Mike: Can you talk a little bit about what is not in your skin care products?
Ashley: Sure, we do not use anything that is not a natural preservative. We do not use any parabens. We do not use any EDTA, anything at all. Everything that we use to preserve would be salt, sugar, honey and grapefruit seed extract.
Mike: What motivated you to create a product line that is purely natural so that you can even eat it?
Ashley: Well, a long time ago I started researching and finding out about all the toxic properties, constituents, and most of the products that I use, I did not even realize because I thought they were all natural. Then I threw everything away and I started to make a few of my own simple recipes. But since then, I got involved in flower essences and I became a student in acupuncture school. I was exposed to a lot more Chinese herbs and flower essences that I had never heard of before.
We started to use those in all of our products and we really just started making things for friends, family, and ourselves. We wanted to create a line that we could market and sell.
Mike: I want to ask you a lot more about your formulation, but first, what is your website and where can people actually buy these products right now?
Ashley: It is www.GoldenPathAlchemy.com.
Mike: What specific Chinese herbs do you like the most to use in your formulations?
Ashley: We use rosebuds. We use ground up oyster shells. We use Goji berry or the lyceum bark fruit. We use frankincense and myrrh. Those are also Chinese herbs.
Mike: What kinds of things do your customers tell you that they are experiencing when they start to use your products?
Ashley: A few people yesterday were saying that it was a miracle how soft their skin became after using our Goji sugar scrub. We used it on the hands, the face. It has a high antioxidant level, and it is made with apricot kernel oil as well. Everything really moisturizes and nourishes the skin, leaving it silky smooth.
Mike: What about the issue of there being a lot of products in the marketplace right now that claim to be natural or organic? What have you found to be true in your investigations of other so-called natural products in the marketplace?
Minka: My name is Minka Robinson and I am from Santa Barbara. I am the co-founder of Golden Path Alchemy. One of the reasons we started our company and why we started the lines is because we were so disillusioned with the natural products that were on the market.
It seems like you go to Whole Foods or Wild Oats and there are all these natural products, quite an abundance, especially of facial products. You get it home, you are reading the ingredients, and there are all these parabens and chemical preservatives. It seems like almost half of the ingredients are not natural. It seems so wrong to call your products natural just because you use a few botanical ingredients.
Mike: Yes, we see that a lot in the marketplace. Something will be labeled herbal skin care or the word "herbal" will be in it and it is only one herb. It is not even the main ingredient. It is still mineral oil based stuff many of the times. I find that outrageous as well. Is this part of the motivating factor that got you moving forward with this product line?
Minka: Well that was one of the main things because I could not find anything in the store that worked for my skin because if it was natural it seemed drying and that it would really deplete my skin of nutrients. The things that did not seem to do that were not natural so we had to start creating our own products that would preserve our skin and keep it moist and supple and it is a great way to take herbs. We make herbal elixirs and tonics as well. We wanted another way.
I read a study about how dangerous it is to put chemicals on the skin. It is even more dangerous than taking them internally because it bypasses the hepatic system. The chemicals go directly into the blood stream before they even make it to the liver to be filtered. So it creates a lot of damage in the body.
Mike: This is a good point. I am glad you mentioned that because recent studies have shown that chemicals in personal care products do enter the blood stream in very high detectable amounts. But for a long time the chemical industry and the Food & Drug Administration have insisted that these products do not really need to be safety regulated because they are not for internal use. They make that interesting distinction.
Minka: Especially because they use many transdermal patches to administer medicine, so it is contradictory.
Mike: Indeed it is. How does nicotine get absorbed but not cosmetic chemicals?
Mike: Where do you think this industry is going then? Do you think that the future is represented by your kind of product that is chemical-free? Do you think it will just be a niche kind of market here for you?
Minka: No, I think the industry is moving in this way. You will see in the future definitely, for example, vanities that are refrigerated because with natural products you are not using chemical preservatives and parabens and such things. They will have a shelf life just as an apple has a shelf life. It has a certain amount of energy and then it begins to decay.
When you keep your products refrigerated it helps them last a lot longer. I think that in the future you will definitely be seeing more products that do not have the chemical ingredients and stabilizers.
Mike: I find it is also interesting that in your products you are using Chinese herbs medicinally with the skin as the assimilation organ but, of course, I know you cannot make medical claims for your product but I think this takes your product to a whole different level where most companies are only focused on what looks cosmetically better, not actually harmonizing with botanical support. Can you talk more about that aspect without getting yourself into regulatory trouble?
Minka: Yes we can.
Ashley: Obviously the skin reflects how the organs are doing. When you use something on the skin, it is going to help internal organs. By using the Chinese herbs in a way that people use them every day, even if it is in a small amount, they are still getting it. It just makes it easier for them to be acclimated to it. Then they are getting these small doses of medicinal herbs that do help with many different conditions.
Mike: One of the principles in Chinese medicine says that the skin reflects the health of the large intestine. I am curious if there may be some benefits of your products to the large intestine as they are treating the skin.
Ashley: That is interesting because many of the things that really support the large intestine are oils and seeds, which help to promote movement through the large intestine. Of course, almost all of our products are rich in wonderful organic pure oils that are both good for the skin and you can see how that would affect the large intestine.
Minka: Then they are made from seeds and they are all rich with that composition. There is definitely a connection there.
Mike: Is your product considered raw or low temperature processed or cold-pressed?
Minka: We use all cold-pressed oils whenever possible just like we use organic ingredients whenever possible. Unfortunately, it is not completely possible to get some Chinese herbs organically. They are just not grown that way and produced that way now. I hope that the market will grow to that place or we started growing some of our own herbs so that the ones we are not able to purchase organically we will be able to grow organically ourselves.
Mike: Well thanks for joining me today. The website is www.GoldenPathAlchemy.com and I have been talking here with Ashley Beckman and Minka Robinson, the co-founders of the company. Be sure to check out their website and their product line. Thanks for joining me today.
Ashley: Of course, thank you so much.
Minka: Thank you.
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