C12-15 Alcohols Benzoate: The ester of benzolic acid and C- 12-15 alcohols. An emollient (acts to smooth and soften skin) that provides a dry, silky feel to skin.
Cactus Grandiflorus: Is used nervous conditions often resulting from stimulants like coffee or tobacco, etc, including nervous tachycardia, palpitation, feeble and irregular pulse, and shortness of breathe with mild exertion.
Cajeput Oil: Extracted from the plant, Melaleuca leucodendron. Used for its antiseptic and analgesic properties.
Calamus: Native Americans chewed the root while running long distances to increase endurance and stamina. In China, calamus root is considered to have antiarrythmic, hypotensive, vasodilatory, antitussive, antibacterial and expectorant properties. It has been used to combat a lack of mental focus, stomach problems, acidity and as an aid to quite tobacco. Externally it is added to the bath to quiet the nerves and induce a state of tranquility. Tincture of calamus is useful as a parasitic when directly and frequently applied to lice and scabies infestations. Caution: avoid during pregnancy.
Calendula Extract: Derived from the dried flowers of golden marigolds. Used to soothe inflammation of the skin and mucous membranes. Calendula extract is used in herbology to reduce body scars, soothe chapped skin and eliminate broken capillaries. Considered to be an excellent remedy for red eyes and any skin abrasions or soreness. Used in fresheners, soothing creams, and sensitive skin products. Sometimes used in deodorants. Some adverse skin reactions have been reported in medical literature.
California Poppy: Used by Native Americans for colic pains. It may be useful in the treatment of gall-bladder colic and as a sedative and hypnotic for spasmodic problems.
Callus: A callus is an excessive build-up of the hard tough skin layers, usually found on feet or areas of the body that endure a lot of friction. ††
Cameilia Extract: Extract of a tropical evergreen shrub that is used as a fragrant additive in products.
Camphor: A cooling and antiseptic extract, with firming and toning properties to the skin. Used as an antiseptic, stimulant, and anti-inflammatory ingredient in toners, aftershaves, lip balms, and after sun preparations.
Candela Wax: Candela Wax is used to bind oils and waxes to give body to a formulation. Often used in lipsticks.
Candelilla Wax: Used to bind oils and waxes to give body to a formulation. Often used in lipstick and blush.
Candida Albicans: Yeast like fungus responsible for the infection candidiasis (a yeast infection).
Candidiasis: Yeast infection.Capillary: The smallest type of blood vessel in the body (i.e. spider veins often found on the face and/or the legs).
Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride: An emollient ester derived form coconut oil with good lubricating properties.
Capsicum: Capsicum is used to help prevent skin blemishes.
Caramel: Used as a coloring in cosmetics and a soothing agent in lotions.
Caraway Seed: Used in facial steams (aromatic), also in poultices to reduce inflammation and bruises.
Carbomer: Thickener used as a gelling agent, like a wax.
Carbomer 940/941/934: An organic gelling agent.
Carbopol: Thickening agent.
Carboxylate: Magnesium aspirate.
Carboxaline: Magnesium aspirate. See Carboxylate.
Carcinogen: Any physical or chemical agent that causes or helps to cause cancer.
Carminative: Reliever of gas pains.
Carnauba Wax: Extracted from the leaves of the Brazilian wax palm tree. It is used for its emollient, moisturizing and skin protectant properties.
Carrageenan: Natural thickening agent.
Carrot Oil: Rich in Vitamin A. Primarily used as a fragrance and coloring agent in cosmetics. Excellent for sensitive skin. It is reported to tone skin, stimulating elasticity.
Cascara Sagrada: May be used for chronic constipation because it encourages peristalsis and tones relaxed muscles of the digestive system.
Castor Oil: Castor Oil comes from the seeds of the castor bean plant. It is used in lipsticks, concealers, hair pomade, ointments, creams and lotions. Acts as a humectant with soothing and emollient actions. Boosts lather in handcrafted soaps.
Cationic: Possessing a positive electrical charge. Cationic detergents are often used in shampoos because they reduce static electricity and leave the hair manageable.
Cationic Surfactants: Those in which the active molecule bears a positive charge. These surfactants usually have strong conditioning properties and are used in conditioners, moisturizing treatments and packs. Cationics often have antimicrobial properties (germicides).
Catnip: A traditional cold and flu remedy. It is a useful diaphoretic helpful in any feverish condition, especially acute bronchitis. It is beneficial as a carminative (reliever of gas) and makes a good remedy for the treatment of diarrhea in children. It also has anti-spasmodic properties. Further, it eases upset stomachs, dyspepsia, flatulence and colic.
Cayenne: It stimulates blood flow, strengthening the heart, arteries, capillaries and nerves. A general tonic, it is also specific for both circulatory and digestive system. It may be used in flatulent dyspepsia and colic. Cayenne may also be used to ward off colds.
Cedarwood Oil: Extracted from the plant, Junipius Virginiana. This oil is used to stimulate blood circulation and oxygenation for sluggish and sallow skin. It acts as a stimulant, antiseptic and revitalizer.
Celandine: Herb (chelidonium majus) useful in the prevention of gall stone formation and for insufficient bile with clay colored or gray stools and stagnant livers with flank pain.
Celery Seed: Used in the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis and gout, and as a urinary antiseptic.
Cellulite: Deposits of fat and other material trapped in pockets beneath the skin.
Ceramides: (a lipid) A natural substance within the skin that reduces water loss by forming a protective barrier. The aging process gradually depletes these lipids and ceramides found in moisturizers or other skin products can replace these lipids and improve the suppleness and moisture content of the skin.
Certified Colors: Colorants approved by the FDA for use in cosmetics, food and drugs. †
Ceteareth-5: An emollient (skin smoother and softener) and emulsifier (binding and thickening agent).
Ceteareth-20: Derived from cetearyl alcohol, it is used with the parent alcohol or with other fatty alcohols and functions as a primary emulsifier and thickening agent.
Cetearyl Alcohol: A mixture of fatty alcohols derived from coconut oil consisting predominantly of cetyl and stearyl alcohols. Used as emollients, thickeners and emulsion stabilizers.
Ceteth-2: A polyethylene glycol derivative of cetyl alcohol. A water-soluble agent used as an emollient (skin smoother and softener), conditioner and emulsifier (binding and thickening agent).
Ceteth-20: A polyethylene glycol derivative of cetyl alcohol. A water-soluble agent used as an emollient, conditioner and emulsifier.
Cetrimonium Bromide: A cationic (possessing a positive electrical charge) conditioning agent and antiseptic that is rarely used in cosmetics due to it high cost. It adds shine
Cetrimonium Chloride: Quaternary (more water soluble) conditioning agent, similar to cetrimonium bromide.
Cetyl Alcohol: A fatty alcohol that acts as a gentle humectant (promotes the retention of moisture in the skin), lather booster, and emulsifier (binding and thickening agent). In hair products, it is used to smooth and soften the hair cuticle.
Cetyldimonium Chloride: Used often as a conditioning agent, compatible with surfactants (agents that allows oil to mix with water), often used in shampoos.
Chakras: Kundalini yoga practitioners believe, Chakras, seven major centers of psychic energy located along the spinal column are responsible for the condition of your mind, body and spirit.
Chamomile: A daisy like plant. Extract from the white and yellow heads of this daisy like plant (chamomile flowers) is used as an excellent skin soother and anti-inflammatory agent. Reputed to bring down swelling and pain in the skin and mucous membranes. Chamomile is used extensively in professional skin care products for its essential oil called azulene. Also calms eczema and allergic reactions. It is used in many hair care products to enhance color. It acts as an emollient, anti-inflammatory, skin soothing agent and provides antioxidation.
Chamomile Extract: See Chamomile.
Chaparral: Chaparral is used as a treatment for skin cancer. Studies also show that it can reduce bacterial or viral damage to teeth when used as a mouth rinse.
Charmeuse: A fine semi-lustrous satin-like crepe.
Chasteberry: See Chaste Tree.
Chaste Tree: Chasteberry has been used to stimulate and normalize pituitary gland functions, especially its progesterone function. The greatest use of Chasteberry lies in normalizing the activity of female sex hormones and it is thus indicated for dysmenorrhoea, premenstrual stress and other disorders related to hormone function. It is especially beneficial during menopausal changes. In a similar way it may be used to aid the body to regain a natural balance after the use of the birth control pill.
Cheilitis: Inflammation and peeling of the lips.
Chelate: Chemical compounds able to bind heavy metal salts and make them insoluble in water.
Chelating: A deep cleansing process that strips the hair lightly before chemical hair treatments.Also known as clarifying.
Chemical: A substance formed by altering the molecular structure of an element or by combining two or more elements to form a new substance.
Chickweed: High in Vitamin C, Chickweed has been used for acne, boils, obesity (dissolves fat), and skin problems. Chickweed is good for stopping bleeding, removing mucous from the lungs, and reducing inflammation of the bowels and stomach. It can also be used as a poultice for rashes and sores.
Chinese Schizandra Berry: Like Ginseng, Schizandra is an adaptogenic agent that improves overall health and helps fight lethargy. The plant contains lignans, a type of plant carbohydrate, and compounds with antioxidant properties that may be more powerful than Vitamins C and E in fighting free radicals.
Chlorophyll: Known for its natural cleansing and moisturizing properties, it is the green coloring substance in plants.
Chloroxylenol: A crystalline, water-soluble substance used as an antiseptic, germicide and fungicide.
Cholesterol: A lipoid manufactured by the liver. It is more commonly located in the skin, fatty tissues, and brain tissue. It forms a protective cream with sebum and water to lubricate and protect the skin.
Cholesterol Escin Complex: Thought to aid in the detoxification and shrinking of fat cells.
Chronic: A disease or condition that persists for a long period of time or reoccurs frequently.
Cinnamon Bark: Cinnamon bark is a natural astringent known to suspend excess oil on oily skin or scalp.
Citric Acid: The same as vitamin C, derived from citrus fruit. It is used commonly in hair and skincare products and many post perm ingredients to neutralize odor. Has astringent and antioxidant properties and also can be used as a stabilizer and preservative. .
Citronella oil: An antiseptic widely used in soaps and deodorizers. It also has an insect-repelling property.
Clarifying: A toner or other solution used after cleansing to maintain proper skin pH.
Clarifying Shampoo: Slightly more alkaline (higher pH) than ordinary shampoo, used to remove excess build-up of products or water chemicals from the hair. †
Clay (Kaolin): † Also known as China Clay, this fine, mineral-rich, powder helps draw oils from your pores while ridding the skin surface of dead cells and dirt. See Bentonite.
Cleansing Creams: A cream that contain little or no soap or detergent and generally has an oily base. It is supposed to be applied and then wiped off, not rinsed. ††
Cleavers: A wonderful tonic to the lymphatic system with alternative and diuretic actions. It helps in cases of swollen glands (lymphadenitis) tonsillitis and adenoid trouble. Cleavers also helps psoriasis, aids in the treatment of cystitis and other urinary conditions, ulcers and tumors.
Clindamycin: An antibiotic often prescribed topically to treat acne. Caution: has provoked severe colitis.
Clove: The herb increases circulation, promotes digestion and nutrition, raises the body temperature; stimulates the excretory organs, and stimulates and disinfects the kidneys, skin, liver and bronchial mucous membrane.
Clover Blossom: Clover Blossom is beneficial in the treatment of acne.
Clove Bud Oil: A natural essential oil made from clove buds, syzygium atmaticum that adds a sweet, spicy smell to skin care products.
Clove Oil: Extracted from the plant, Eugenia caryophyllata, it is used for its anti-inflammatory anti-irritant properties in creams and lotions. ††
Coal Tar Colors: Most colors today are derived from petrochemicals not coal tar products. †
Cocamide DEA: Shampoo thickener and foam stabilizer derived from coconut fatty acids. It gives lather and cleans the skin and hair. It also assists in removal of fatty soils.
Cocamide MEA: Monoamide (MEA) as opposed to diamide (DEA). See Cocamide DEA.
Cocamidopropyl Betaine: Derived from coconut fatty acids it is known for it mild conditioning properties. It is an amphoteric surfactant (an agent where the active molecule bears both positive and negative charges). It is used as a cleanser agent and as an additive to shampoos and conditioners. .
Cocoa Butter: Its mainly used is a thickening agent and is a common ingredient in lipsticks, soaps and emollient creams. . It easily absorbs into the skin and imparts sheen.
Coco Betaine: See Cocamidopropyl Betaine.
Coconut Oil: This oil derived from coconuts acts as a surfactant and has good cleansing properties. It is used as an emollient in soaps and as a shine enhancer in some hair products.
Colic: Stomach or intestinal spasm.
Colitis: Inflammation of the colon.
Collagen: Collagen is a natural substance within body tissues. As human skin ages, our own soluble collagen becomes less flexible and our skin's connective tissue loses its ability to retain moisture naturally.
Collinsonia: The root, leaf and flower are used for cases of hemorrhoids, varicose veins, benign prostatic hypertrophy, and chronic laryngitis. It is also used for urinary calculi, diverticulosis, colitis, and chronic heart problems.
Cologne: A combination of water containing alcohol and fragrant oils. Not to be confused with a concentrated perfume.
Coltsfoot: A healing herb with soothing and softening (emollient) properties that is soothing to the scalp.
Comedogenic: Capable of triggering non-inflammatory acne lesion (comedones). A product and/or substance that promotes acne.
Comedolytic: Agent capable of resolving comedones and preventing the formation of new comedones.
Comedone, open: A blackhead.
Comedone, closed: A whitehead.
Comedones: Non-inflammatory acne lesion. There are three types of comedones. The microcomedo is a clinically invisible accumulation of corneocytes in the follicular canal. The microcomedo is the original acne lesion. The closed comedone (whitehead) evolves from the microcomedo and appears as a white dot. The open comedone (blackhead) appears as a dark-topped dot.
Comfrey: Comfrey is an anti-inflammatory, astringent, and emollient containing mucopolysaccharides (highly effective humectants). Comfrey, which contains allantoin, has impressive wound healing properties and may be used externally to speed wound healing and help prevent scar tissue. It is an effective healing agent in gastric and duodenal ulcers, hiatus hernias and ulcerative colitis, and its astringency will help hemorrhages.
Comfrey Extract: An extract of the fruit of citrullus colocynthis. It is a fantastic skin soother and moisturizer. See Comfrey.
Comfrey Root: Comfrey Root extract is rich in allantoin, known for its ability to heal wounds and stimulate the growth of healthy tissue. See Comfrey.
Compress: Cloth soaked with herbal tea and applied externally.
Concomitant: Existing or occurring simultaneously. Therapeutic regiments employing more than one agent at the same time are often described as concomitant therapies.
Conditioner: † A creamy, moisturizing, detangling hair product meant to be used after shampooing.††
Coneflower Extract: Extracted from the Native American plant, Echinacea angustifolia, it was originally used as an antidote for snakebites. Coneflower extract has been clinically demonstrated to aid in healing burns, soothe topical pain, and act as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Conjuctiva: Tissues lining the eye socket.
Conjunctivitis: Redness and irritation of the white part of the eyeball and the lining of the eye socket.
Contaminant: An organism such as bacteria, yeast, mold, fungi, or any other unwanted substance that may find its way into a product.
Cool: Refers to blue or violet based undertones in hair, skin, or makeup. †
Concealer: An opaque makeup used to cover darkness under eyes, redness of the skin, or anything irregular in the skin's color or texture. Comes in a waxy stick, cream, or opaque liquid formula.
Copper: Copper is an essential mineral that helps oxidize Vitamin C. It works with Vitamin C to form Elastin, a chief component of the Elastin muscle fibers in the skin and throughout the body.
Copper Peptides: Organic copper proteins which can help to accelerate the tanning process. The protein provides soothing and nourishing benefits to the skin.
Corn Cob Meal: A finely milled powder from corncobs acts as great remover of dead skin (exfoliant) without drying or scratching.
Corneocytes: The epidermis is a thin outer layer made up of cells called corneocytes, which are packed with fibrous protein called Keratin. Corneocytes are found in abundance in the thick layers of the epidermis that protect the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet and also in the fingernails, toenails and hair.
Cornflower Extract: The extract obtained from the flowers of the plant can be used as an anti-inflammatory. The extract is used in toners, astringents, and healing creams. Caution: It can cause photosensitivity in some people.
Cornmeal: Cornmeal is used as an exfoliant (dead skin remover). It is often found as an ingredient in soaps. Go to the Fruits & Vegetables Dictionary and look up Corn.
Corn Oil: Corn oil is used as a skin soother and softener (emollient). It is rich in linoleic acid, one of the three essential fatty acids. Go to the Fruits & Vegetables Dictionary and look up Corn.
Corn Silk: Corn silk is a soothing diuretic, that acts as a urinary demulcent (soothing, coating herb that can protect irritated or inflamed tissue).
Corn Starch: Used to absorb water and soothe the skin.
Cortisol: Hydrocortisone. The main glucocortisteroid secreted by the cortex of the adrenal gland.
Cortisone: A glucocortisteroid. Cortisone relieves inflammation, pain, and swelling.
Cortex: Middle layer of the hair shaft where the hairís pigment is contained. †
Cosmeceutical: An unrecognized term by the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. In the cosmetic industry the word refers to a cosmetic product with drug-like benefits. Note: The FDA does not approve cosmetics prior to sale.
Cosmetics: † Products used for the purposes of cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness or alternating ones appearance.
Coumarin: An extract of the tonka bean from which several anticoagulants are derived.
Cramp Bark: Used as a muscle relaxer to combat muscle tension and muscle spasms, and cramps associated with the female uterus during menstruation. Its astringent action helps treat excessive blood loss and bleeding during menstruation and menopause.
Cream: A preparation for the skin used to impart moisture. A cream is usually thicker and more emollient (soother and softener) than a lotion. †
Cream Rinse: A mixture of wax, thickeners, and a group of chemicals used to coat the hair shaft and detangle the hair. Generally applied after shampooing. †
Creatine: a protein derivative located in muscle tissue that can be found in some bodybuilding supplements.
Cryogen: Substance that produces extreme cold.
Cryotherapy: The use of cold for therapeutic reasons.
Cucumber: Known for its astringent and soothing properties it is an ingredient often found in facial creams, lotions, and cleansers. It can also be used as an anti-inflammatory agent (slices placed over puffy eyes can reduce swelling). Go to the Fruits & Vegetables Dictionary and look up Cucumber.
Cucumber Extract: An extract with anti-inflammatory actions and skin tightening properties.
Cucumber juice: A juice with moisture binding, soothing and tightening properties.
Culverís Root: An age-old remedy for liver disorders and constipation. It may also be used in conjunction with other compounds as a treatment for gallbladder, colitis, gallstones and hepatitis.
Curbicia Extract: A plant extract which helps regulate the skinís production of sebum.† Used in hair treatments.
Cuticle: The fold of skin at the base of the fingernail. Hair cuticles are the outermost (epidermal) layer of the hair shaft. Healthy cuticles impart sheen to the hair.
Cyclomethicone: A silicone derivative that adds luster and sheen. It is also used to reduce the greasy feel of tanning oils (solvent used to dilute).
Cypress Oil: Oil with soothing and calming properties. The oil can also reduce circulation and help narrow dermal blood vessels (vaso-constrictive).
Cyst: A deep-seated mass filled with liquid or semisolid material (puss) and surrounded by a capsule.
Cystine: A non-essential amino acid that functions as an antioxidant and protects the body against radiation and pollution. It is necessary for skin formation and repair, aids in protein synthesis, and can help slow down the aging process, deactivate free radicals, neutralize toxins.
Cytokine: Generic term for non-antibody proteins that are involved in the immune response system, such as lymphokines.
Cytology: The study of the anatomy, physiology, pathology, and chemistry of the cell.
Cytotoxicity: A substance attribute that kills or damages cells.
Cytotoxin: A substance that affects abnormal cells and cancer cells.