B Corporation

Ethical Business

Little Innoscents is part of the B Corporation global community of over 2,300 businesses in more than 50 countries across 130 industries that are striving to be the best FOR the world by using their business as a force for good.

“It is our chance as a business to become and have a higher purpose and a chance of solving society’s most challenging problems,” says Director Antonette Golikidis.

We are proud to be a B Corporation

We’re proud to be a B Corporation.

B-Corp

Little Innoscents is here to make a change on many levels; we are here to be successful in business AND we are here to make a difference to the community by caring for the future of our children and the many families that we encourage around the world to switch to healthier options in skincare and household products. To be a B Corporation aligns with our vision, goals and our overall ethos. It means everything to us and gives our consumers the assurance that our products have been manufactured and handled according to strict guidelines. It is our chance as a business to become accountable and have a higher purpose and a chance to help solve some of the environmental impacts that we face on our planet today and for tomorrow.

As a Certified B Corporation, you can be assured that we’ve met verified higher levels of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability to the highest standards.

Our Beliefs

  • We believe that we have an obligation to our consumers, suppliers, and distributors to create a great quality product range that is safe for both the community and for the planet.
  • We believe children need to be nurtured and cared for by using products that minimise their exposure to potentially harmful chemicals.
  • We believe in being conscious of the environment when using personal care products.

The B Corp movement is one of the most important of our lifetime, built on the simple fact that business impacts and serves more than just shareholders—it has an equal responsibility to the community and to the planet.” Rose Marcario, CEO of Patagonia

To find out more about other businesses like Little Innoscents, who are actively working to build a better world, go to www.bcorporation.com.au.

Absorbing Chemicals By Antonette Golikidis

Absorbing Chemicals via the skin

Why should we be interested in natural skin care? Our skin works hard for us.

It’s the largest organ in our body and provides a number of essential functions including protection, the regulation of body temperature and the creation of Vitamin D from sunlight.

There are 3 layers to the skin – the epidermis, dermis and cutaneous layer. For many years it was believed that these skin layers did an admirable job of keeping nasty chemicals at bay, but some sections of the scientific community have started to understand that this is far from the case. Many now argue that when any chemical comes into contact with the skin it can be absorbed, with the exact effects dependant on a number of factors including the size of the molecules of a particular substance, duration of exposure, and health of the skin.

While the scientific debate continues, there’s no denying that at its most basic, chemical absorption can irritate, sensitise and destroy skin tissue. Irritation might take the form of eczema or dermatitis. Sensitising skin by frequently using harsh chemicals can make it much more prone to chemical irritation in the future. And destroying skin tissue prematurely ages skin.

Chemicals to look out for in skincare

The list of potentially toxic chemical ingredients found in some skincare products is longer than Paris Hilton’s shopping list, however a couple of the more common (and more easily pronounced) include parabens and mineral oil. Parabens are one of the most widely used preservatives worldwide, regularly found in skin care products, cosmetics, toothpaste, and shampoos. In various studies, they have been linked to everything from dermatitis to breast cancer.

What chemicals are in your skincare products?

Mineral oil is a by-product of petroleum and is a common ingredient in cosmetics, baby lotions and moisturisers. Suggested effects include disruption of the skin’s natural ability to rid itself of toxins, premature aging and damage to cell function.

The long and short of this is that if any skin care product contains an ingredient you don’t recognise, or can’t pronounce, it’s probably a synthetic additive, and you just can’t be sure how much of it you’re absorbing.

Our skin is designed to protect us from nature, not from chemicals and additives. Why take the risk? Choose natural skin care products like Little Innoscents and stop irritating your skin.

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. Currently, she lectures in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level.

*While the greatest effort has been invested to ensure the validity of this information, the advice therein is set as a ‘general’ guide only, and your individual needs may require a different method to the one shown. We encourage you to see your regular healthcare professional, should you be concerned for you or your baby’s wellbeing.

Summer Skincare Tips for Babies

Summer Skin Care Tips for Babies

How to protect your baby’s skin this summer

It’s summer in Australia and that means more time outdoors paddling in the pool, swimming, building sandcastles at the beach or playing at the park. It’s all great fun, however, our hot Aussie sun can take a toll on your child’s skin. Baby skin is softer and finer than adult skin and it loses moisture at a much greater rate. We’ve listed our top summer skincare tips for babies to help you to protect their skin through the warmer months.

Choosing the best sun protection

Evidence suggests that childhood sun exposure contributes significantly to your lifetime risk of skin cancer. It’s important to take multiple approaches to protecting your child’s skin from sun damage.

  • Choose a broad spectrum, SPF30 (or higher) natural sunscreen that contains zinc oxide as the active ingredient. The Little Innoscents SPF30 Natural Sun Lotion is a great choice for babies over 6 months of age. Apply to areas of exposed skin that are not covered by protective clothing, such as the face, ears, hands, neck and feet
  • Avoid sunscreens that contain chemical UV blockers and other nasties such as parabens, octyl methoxycinnamate (OMC), oxybenzone (benzophenone-3), octyl-dimethyl-PABA and octinoxate, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor (4-MBC), padimate O (2-ethylhexyl-4-dimethylaminobenzoate), tints or artificial fragrances
  • Cover up with a hat that protects the baby’s face, neck and ears and appropriate outdoor clothing to protect the skin, such as a long-sleeved rashie swimsuit. We recommend fabrics that are tested and approved with an SPF 50+ sun safety rating such as those available in the Australian Rashoodz range of rashies and hats for babies and children
  • A pair of wraparound sunglasses will help to protect your baby’s eyes
  • Try to plan your day’s activities outside the middle of the day when UV levels are most intense. Limit the time you spend in the direct sun and seek shade where possible

Choose SPF50+ outdoor clothing and a hat like this example from Rashoodz

Keeping skin hydrated

Our Australian summers can be harsh on delicate baby skin, so keeping them hydrated is very important.

  • First and foremost, always give plenty of fluids on warmer days spent outside. Breast milk is ideal, but if your baby or toddler has weaned, give them either formula or water and also fruit and vegetables with a high water content, such as watermelon are good choices for older babies who have started solid foods
  • Moisturise once or twice a day with an Organic Baby Moisturiser to keep the skin hydrated from the outside. This is particularly important for those who suffer from eczema or other dry skin conditions, as keeping the skin from drying out can be a useful preventative measure
  • If the skin or lips do get too dry after a day outdoors, or a little too much sun exposure has occurred and caused sunburn, a quality, natural skin balm such as a Paw Paw Balm or an Intensive Soothing Baby Balm will go a long way to helping lock in and restore moisture and to heal and soothe it as quickly as possible

Preventing and Soothing insect bites

If you are in an area that is prone to lots of mosquitoes or biting insects, there are a few ways that you can tackle the problem.

  • The best preventative measure is a toxic chemical free one. Dress in long sleeves and pants and if necessary, apply a natural or organic insect repellent to any exposed areas of skin (avoiding the eyes, mouth, hands or any areas of broken skin). Avoid products that contain DEET
  • Ensure that you wash off any insect repellant that you have used on the skin once you head inside
  • Use mosquito netting or a light muslin cloth over your pram
  • If your child does get bitten, wash the area and apply a soothing balm such as Paw Paw Balm or an Intensive Soothing Lotion. If there are any signs of allergic reaction, such as swelling around the bite or hives, head to your doctor asap

It might all sound overwhelming, but once you have taken all the necessary precautions, make sure that you get out there and enjoy our beautiful Australian summer. I guarantee it will be worth it!

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. Currently, she lectures in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level.

*While the greatest effort has been invested to ensure the validity of this information, the advice therein is set as a ‘general’ guide only, and your individual needs may require a different method to the one shown. We encourage you to see your regular healthcare professional, should you be concerned for you or your baby’s wellbeing.

Nanoparticles Explained

Nanoparticles in sunscreen explained

Nanoparticles in Sunscreen

In order for nanoparticles in sunscreen to be considered dangerous, they have to firstly penetrate the skin, then go somewhere they can do significant damage. For now, there is no solid proof this can happen in humans.

How it works

To get through the skin, the particles have to be small enough. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are often manufactured in nano-size particles, but they tend to clump together. These “clumps” are known as “aggregates”, which can in turn clump together to form “agglomerates”. While agglomerates break up fairly easily, aggregates require enormous amounts of energy to break up, and wouldn’t do so in the normal use of sunscreens. Sunscreen maker Hamilton Laboratories commissioned testing of their own sunscreens, which contained primary particles in the nano range, but in the finished products found no nanoparticles, suggesting the primary particles had formed larger aggregates. Our testing found few nano-size particles present in sunscreens, suggesting either the primary particles were mostly aggregating or that the primary particle size used was larger than the nano-range.

What manufacturers say

Manufacturers argue that aggregates over 100nm don’t qualify as nanoparticles because they’re too big; however, critics argue the particles still have nano-properties – one of which is high reactivity due to a large surface area – which could be an issue if they penetrate the skin.

Some manufacturers prefer to keep the particles from aggregating because it improves the transparency of the product. Nanoparticles can be coated so they don’t aggregate. However, these coated nanoparticles are less reactive than uncoated particles, so even if they do penetrate the skin, they may not do much damage.

nanoparticles explained

 What scientists say

Can nanoparticles really penetrate the skin?

The key to the safety debate is whether the nanoparticles can penetrate the outer “dead” layer of skin into underlying live tissue where they can penetrate living cells and cause damage. Under laboratory conditions with pieces of skin tissue, scientists have been able to get nanoparticles to pass through the tissue. However, research to date has not found this to be true in ‘live’ healthy, intact skin, although there’s some suggestion they may penetrate mechanically stressed skin (when exercising, for example) or broken skin (caused by acne, psoriasis or wounds). An Australian study found that when zinc nano-compounds were applied to skin, tiny amounts of zinc had penetrated. But it was unclear whether it was actually the nanoparticles themselves, or zinc ions from the nanoparticles which had dissolved and diffused through the skin. Ions are not the same as nanoparticles – and zinc itself is an essential nutrient. If they penetrate, the nanoparticles have to be sufficient in quantity to have a measurable or noticeable impact.

How much gets through?

In studies where researchers successfully get metal oxide ions to penetrate skin, the amount getting through appears to be tiny.

Do metal pigment nanoparticles cause DNA damage in living cells?

If the nanoparticle makes its way to living tissue, it has to enter the cell and access cellular components such as mitochondria and DNA. Studies using cultured human or mammalian cells, bacteria or naked DNA to test the effect of nanoparticles of all kinds have found damage to DNA. However, in almost all cases the nanoparticles tested were not directly comparable with nano metal oxides: they were different forms of particle or different substances (and the substances tested were often more hazardous than zinc or titanium). As such, results cannot be generalised between different forms of nanoparticles and different substances.

Living cells have all sorts of protective mechanisms against oxidative damage that aren’t necessarily present in the laboratory cells, and certainly not present in naked bacterial DNA. Some scientists have been confident that these protective mechanisms will kick into action against nano-sunscreens. However, a recent study of mice who’d been given titanium dioxide nanoparticles in their drinking water found significant DNA and chromosomal damage occurred. So, no protective effect evident.

What the regulators say

At present, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), which has jurisdiction over sunscreens, does not distinguish between nano and non-nano variants of a particular ingredient. However, it hasn’t been completely oblivious to their emergence in the market, and conducted two large research reviews in 2006 and 2009.

It concludes “there is evidence from isolated cell experiments that zinc oxide and titanium dioxide can induce free radical formation in the presence of light and this may damage these cells. However, this would only be of concern in people using sunscreens if the zinc oxide and titanium dioxide penetrated into viable skin cells. The weight of current evidence is that they remain on the surface of the skin and in the outer dead layer of the skin.”

Regulators in most other countries also tend to focus on “new chemicals” and existing chemicals produced at the nanoscale are not considered to be “new” for regulatory purposes, despite their differing properties. In Europe, however, cosmetics will soon be required to indicate the presence of nanoparticles in their ingredients labelling. The TGA, in cooperation with international agencies, is continuing to monitor scientific research.

CHOICE verdict

The weight of evidence shows that not using sunscreen is more dangerous than using sunscreen, given there is no firm evidence that nanoparticles found in sunscreens can penetrate the skin and make their way to living cells. But a lack of evidence doesn’t mean it can’t happen; more research is needed, preferably using real people and relevant products. This is reason enough to invoke the precautionary principle, and nanoparticles should be proven to be safe before they hit the market. Some companies have found ways to make larger, non-nanoparticle forms of zinc oxide transparent, and there are also ways of treating nanoparticles so they’re less reactive. We would prefer to see these technologies be used. We want nanoparticles to be labelled on products so consumers can choose to avoid them if they’re concerned.

Source: Choice (www.choice.com.au)

Natural Sun Lotion for babies

What about the Little Innoscents Sunscreen?

The Little Innoscents Sunscreen uses zinc oxide to block out the sun’s rays and the particles are NOT nano. You can tell for yourself by rubbing the lotion into your skin – it is not transparent, therefore the particles are bigger than nano. Little Innoscents Sunscreen is safe for delicate baby skin.

This unique formulation provides broad spectrum from the sun while also being water resistant to provide protection while swimming and playing various sports. This mineral based sunscreen contains Zinc Oxide as the only active ingredient and best of all, it has NO PRESERVATIVES Nada zilch Nothing…. It’s also completely free from chemical absorbers, and suitable for sensitive skin and a favourite with the entire family.

Safe to use on children from 6 month of age, so parents can feel secure in the knowledge that their child’s skin will be cleansed, nourished and protected.

Directions: Apply generously onto clean, dry skin 20 minutes prior to sun exposure.

Re-apply every 2 hours and after swimming, exercise, excessive perspiration and towel drying.

Avoid prolonged sun exposure. Wear protective clothing, a hat, sunglasses, seek shade and use sufficient sunscreen for all unprotected areas

_____________

*While the greatest effort has been invested to ensure the validity of this information, the advice therein is set as a ‘general’ guide only, and your individual needs may require a different method to the one shown. Little Innoscents would like to encourage you to see your regular healthcare professional, should you be concerned for you or your baby’s wellbeing.

Baby Massage

Baby Massage Tips and Techniques

Baby Massage Techniques and Tips

Most mums see baby skin care is an important part of caring for baby’s health but did you know that baby massage can play an integral role in keeping your baby healthy and happy too?

Baby massage has been used in other cultures for centuries. It can be great for the parent and child bond, but that’s far from the only benefit.

It’s also believed to stimulate the immune system, improve circulation and digestion, aid the development of movement and coordination, reduce colic, promote better sleep and even stimulate growth in premature babies.

How do I massage?

As a mother, you can instinctively find your own natural abilities to massage your baby, making sure that baby is comfortable and enjoying the experience.

Making your baby feel cared for and caressed is only natural and is a wonderful way to make your little one feel loved and nurtured.

For those that would like to follow a specific technique, try using the baby massage sequence below.

To begin

Place the massage oil in the hands and rub vigorously to warm the liquid.

baby massage

Start with your baby’s legs…..

Nurse the foot with one hand and gently “milk” the leg from ankle to thigh with the other.
Next, holding the foot with both hands, use a gentle squeezing and twisting action, moving upwards from foot to thigh.
To finish, stroke from foot to the top of the thigh. Repeat all techniques on the opposite leg.

baby massage

Next, move onto the tummy…..

Using both hands, palms flat, in a hand-over-hand clockwise circular motion, from left to right.

To relieve a bloated stomach, using your fingertips ‘walk’ in a clockwise circular motion around the belly.=

To massage the chest, glide both hands outwards from the centre of the ribcage up to the shoulders and back again ‘Bicycling’ the legs after this massage can also relieve pain. Always stop if a child becomes distressed or uncomfortable.

baby massage

For the arms and hands…..

Nurse the babies hand with one hand and gently “milk” the arm from wrist to shoulder with the opposite hand.

Next, holding the babies arm with both your hands, use a gentle squeezing and twisting action, moving upwards from wrist to shoulder.

To finish, stroke from wrist to the top of the shoulder. Repeat all techniques on the opposite arm.

baby massage

Finally, the back…

Gently turn your baby onto his/her tummy for the back massage.
With your fingertips, gently massage little circles all over the back.
Lastly, use the waterfall stroke, which is palm of hand over hand moving from neck to feet continuously and slowly. At the end of this beautiful massage, it is lovely to give your baby a cuddle.

My top 10 expert baby massage tips:

  • Massage after a bath when your baby is already undressed
  • Giving a massage before bed is a great part of your bedtime routine, helping your baby to relax and settle for bed
  • Make sure you’re in a warm room, with no drafts, bright lights, or excessive noise
  • Have an organic oil or massage lotion ready in a plastic bowl beside you, so that you can dip into it without fiddling
  •  Place baby on a thick towel or blanket
  • Rub your hands vigorously to warm the massage oil or lotion before applying to the skin
  • Keep your massage sequence short until you establish what parts your baby enjoys
  • Be prepared for interruptions – a little baby may want to turn over. Just bear with them and continue with your technique where you left off.
  • You can put baby on your lap, belly down, or resting on your shoulder if it’s easier
  • Keep other children away from baby – give them their own doll to massage
  • Always stop if the child shows signs of distress

In all aspects of the massage, be guided by your baby’s reaction. If they start to become upset, try softening the strokes (not so soft as to tickle) or try a different spot.

Being physically gentle is vital but it’s also important not to use a product that could irritate their beautiful skin, so choose a gentle, organic product which will not cause any harm when absorbed by the skin.

Get the ambiance right with a little soothing music and soft lighting, and you might find that baby massage is relaxing and beneficial for tired, stressed mums too!

Try the Little Innoscents Massage Oil to massage your baby.

 

About the Author: Antonette Golikidis has studied Natural Health Science at the Australian College of Natural Medicine and is qualified in Remedial Massage Therapy and Aromatherapy. She has lectured in Remedial Massage at a tertiary level. The greatest effort has gone into ensuring the information on this page is valid, however, if you are concerned about the health of your child, please visit your healthcare professional.

 

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