Nutricosmetics have a long history in Europe and Asia and it’s the fastest growing beauty category in North America. Just what is it? And why are we not talking about it let alone using it? – It seems like it’s time for a quick nutricosmetics guide
In this article, I will share some of my own research and reflections on this new-ish product category.
Specifically, it covers:
What are Nutricosmetics?
What are the origins of Nutricosmetics?
Why aren’t Nutricosmetics more popular?
So let’s dive in shall we?
First things first, what are nutricosmetics? If we take a closer look at the word, it’s a combination of “nutrition + cosmetics”.
Definition: Essentially, a nutricosmetic is a formula of nutrients including vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants and other essential nutrients, designed to be taken orally for beauty and cosmetic purposes.
Common names in North America include beauty supplements, skin vitamins or nutritional support for skincare or hair, which all fall under the nutricosmetic category.
Origin of Nutricosmetics: A Cultural & Historical Perspective
Throughout history, different cultures have taken specific combinations of foods, herbs and plants for either wellness or medicinal purposes. These wellness traditions have been passed down from generation to generation until they’ve become common knowledge within or even across cultures. The famous saying “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away” is a good example of this. While sometimes these conventional wisdoms have been disproved, more often than not, modern science has validated these traditions through research.
Nutricosmetics is very much a modern-day version of “harnessing the power of nutrients for health and wellness”. They are often formulated with the specific purpose of evening out fine lines, giving your skin an added boost of collagen or giving your hair and nails some extra shine. The main difference is, instead of having to consume enormous quantities of certain types of food, modern technology has made it possible to offer the same nutritional benefits in a much more concentrated form.
If this makes sense to you, the next logical question is “why isn’t it more popular?” We will explore possible reasons in the next section.
3 Beliefs That Keep Us From Embracing Nutricosmetics: A Psychological Perspective
Belief No. 1: You Were Born With It
Yes, there is no denying that genetics play a major role in not just beauty and aging but also how we perceive beauty and aging. Often when we encounter another outwardly beautiful being, we attribute the beauty to good genes, or how the other person is just “naturally” beautiful. After that moment of admiration, our brains typically lead us down two paths 1) this is something I’ll never be able to achieve, since I’m not blessed with these genes, or 2) he or she can’t be that naturally beautiful, they must have had some “enhancements”.
Frankly neither mindset is helpful. More specifically, they translate into:
- I guess I’ll just give up, since I didn’t hit the genetic jackpot.
- I’ll never stoop as low as getting “work” done, so I’ll just continue doing what I’ve been doing.
Besides the aspect of jealousy and how negative emotions impact our health, what’s most damaging about these thoughts is the fact that they hinder us from making positive choices and just keep us stuck in a runt. This really is a vicious cycle.
The reality is, most individuals whom we perceive to be physically beautiful, also have healthy habits which fuel their overall wellness, in turn resulting in positive energy and a healthy glow. If you think a little deeper, the overall energy, positivity and health of a person plays a major role in what we consider “beautiful”, doesn’t it?
So next time you encounter a physically beautiful human being, take a moment to admire, give compliments and most importantly motivate yourself to be healthier, take care of yourself a little more and embrace THE beauty of “you”.
Belief No. 2: Beauty Is Only Skin Deep
Let’s take a closer look at what constitutes “beauty” and “health”. If we take a step back in time, actually, way, way back, when our first ancestors were cave dwellers, the concepts of beauty and health were very much one in the same. Why? Because it’s a survival mechanism, where the being was “attracted” to the healthiest potential mate in the clan with the healthiest and strongest genes. This would in turn, give the offspring a higher chance of survival in the harsh environment.
Fast forward to modern day, the concepts of “beauty” and “health” have grown very much apart. Even though, physical beauty is celebrated and admired, throughout our education and family teachings, we’ve learned to associate physical beauty with words such as “vain”, “shallow” and “superficial”. While we secretly all want to be beautiful, to say it out loud would almost be frowned upon. On the other hand, it’s totally fine to say, “I want to be healthy”. See the disconnect there?
This partially is why we are comfortable taking vitamins and supplements to protect our eyes, to grow muscle, to ease out joints or even to enhance our mood, because it’s for “health” purposes. But when it comes to taking nutricosmetics for “beauty”, we feel queasy and uncomfortable.
Perhaps it is high time we reconnect the notions of beauty and health. Healthy skin, a glowing complexion equals beauty and vice versa. If you are already taking supplements and vitamins for other parts of your body, why not try a product which nourishes and reinvigorates the largest organ in your body ~ your skin?
Belief No. 3: No Pain No Gain
This is another belief that is deeply ingrained in us through a combination of education, and/or our religious upbringing. All too often we are taught we need to sacrifice in order to achieve happiness. While this belief is without a doubt a strong motivator and has immense impact on our lives, it can also lead to anxiety, distrust and guilt.
How often have we stayed in a toxic relationship, where we tell ourselves, in order for something to work, we must suffer? How often have we gone on a strict diet, starved ourselves only to crash and binge eat? Which results in us feeling guilty for doing so, and we start the same routine over and over again?
This belief is partially why we inherently distrust a product which talks about beauty, in the form of a capsule. “This is too easy!” “Where is the pain?” “What’s the catch?” “It must not work!”
Sometimes, it’s healthier to take a step back and analyze the beliefs that guide our action. We should perhaps ask ourselves: Are they steering me in the right direction? Are they doing more harm than good? Are they preventing me from trying something new?
Conclusion: Worth A Try
As a working mother with a busy lifestyle, I pride myself in researching new products and exploring new ways to contribute to the health and wellness of not just my family but also to myself. I don’t feel guilty using a product which can provide the essential benefits while saving me some valuable time.
In this article, I’ve provided a beginner’s guide to nutricosmetics and some of my personal reflections on the subject. Now it’s your turn to sound off! Let me know your thoughts below!
The post Nutricosmetics: A Beginners Guide. Are They Worth a Try? appeared first on A Complete.