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The American Organic Hustle – Understanding The Misunderstood

VaporJelMy name is Bob Root.  I am one of the Keys founders and the chief scientist.  A customer contacted Keys Customer Service with three fundamental questions. The questions are mostly about being organic and safety as well as functionality. I have answers, and they might not be what you think.

First, What Does The USDA Say About Organic and Skin Care?

USDA certified organic foods are grown and processed according to federal guidelines addressing, among many factors, soil quality, animal raising practices, pest and weed control, and use of additives. Organic producers rely on natural substances and physical, mechanical, or biologically based farming methods to the fullest extent possible.  Skin care and cosmetics can have a USDA certification if the ingredients they use are the same as food that has been certified organic

● FDA does not define or regulate the term “organic,” as it applies to cosmetics, body care, or personal care products.

organic● USDA regulates the term “organic” as it applies to agricultural products through its National Organic Program (NOP) regulation, 7 CFR Part 205.

● If a cosmetic, body care product, or personal care product contains or is made up of agricultural ingredients, and can meet the USDA/NOP organic production, handling, processing and labeling standards, it may
be eligible to be certified under the NOP regulations.

● The operations which produce the organic agricultural ingredients, the handlers of these agricultural ingredients, and the manufacturer of the final product must all be certified by a USDA-accredited organic certifying agent.

Click Here to Download the FDA Document on Organic

Keys Customer Asked About Organic?

“I am delighted with the questions and order of the questions asked because I have waited a long time for the market to mature to understand my answers.” This will be one of the main subjects on my Joe Rogan Podcast.

Questions & Answers!

The Customer asked: “I am thinking of getting Keys MetaClean Healing Soap & Shampoo, it says there is >85% organic content, what is the rest that is not organic in this shampoo?”

Bob Response: “There is a reasonably simple answer here, but has more far-reaching implications because consumers have a perception that the meaning of organic equates to safety. Later for that.

One of the biggest consumer misunderstandings in skincare is that organic is not a synonym for safe. Safety comes in many forms including trusting the people who use the products you buy.

At core levels, an ingredient, like Avocado oil, can be purchased from a producer that has followed and been monitored by the USDA(United States Department of Agriculture). Wild-crafted ingredients like Shea Butter and high-quality beeswax cannot be certified as Organic because they cannot be traced through the process of where a plant comes from or how they are pollinated. It is pretty hard to trace the pollination path of bees through the jungle.

Technically, MetaClean is considered to be organic because it exceeds the 70% rule put forth by the USDA for skin care and cosmetics. Yes, a product can be USDA certified organic and still have 30% non-organic ingredients including water. We choose to list the true organic content as opposed to using a blanket statement that may or may not be true. So MetaClean has 85% organic ingredients and 15% wild-crafted. In this case, it is Shea Butter made by hand in Ghana by a women’s tribe that we have been buying from for nearly 15 years.

As to safety, there seems to be an impression that organic farms are safe, run by Hippies and use state-of-the-art equipment. People often opt to buy at a farmers market versus trust a new age supplier. That may be a bad decision.

To gain a USDA Certificate, it takes modern machinery and techniques to get certified. We love “wild-crafted” ingredients because they are hand-made and usually of the highest quality. Most often, they come from places that do not even know what a pesticide is and their religions or culture do not permit them to use pesticides. So, that farm on the California coast near the diesel truck stop and using 100-year-old rusted machinery lubricated with motor oil is organic and not safe. Most often they have spent more on their Organic Farm sign or Facebook page than they have testing their food for pollutants and pesticides.”

Whole versus Fractionated Ingredients

Customer Asked, “When you list on the right the vitamins/actions, are you indicating that the actual ingredient is providing those vitamins, for example, Avocado Oil gives Retinol vitamin or is Retinol separate from the Avocado Oil?”

Bob Response, “Great question and a good pick for an ingredient to use as an example! We opt to use only whole ingredients because of how pure forms interact. We use the term “Chemical-Free Skin Health” as a marketing term because fractionated and estered whole ingredients used in most skin care products are used to amplify the effects of the base ingredient. The product branded as Retinol is a powerful and violent product using massive levels of a particular type of vitamin A extracted and condensed into something that has immediate effects on the skin. The adage that if it burns and makes something red it must be working. Retinol, the brand, works in minutes and overnight. Is it better? To me, the answer is no because it harms.

Whole retinol in avocado oil has gradual effects improving the skin elasticity and tone over a much more extended period. Use it every day, and you will see a difference in a couple of weeks, and it is life-long if you keep using it. More important, the “Keys Challenge” has always been to see how long it takes before your friends notice a change.
So, quick results are quick but are they harming. That is the biggest question.

To answer directly, we do not separate ingredients into their constituent components; we appreciate what they do for you in their native form.

Product Safety Rankings

Customer Asked, “What is it in here that can be unsafe for some individuals since it is not complete 0 on safe scale.”

Bob Response: “I would never design, produce or sell a product that is knowingly not safe. I am an engineer who developed products for my wife suffering from the chemical after effects of Melanoma caused by prescription sunscreens, creams, and lotions. We make and design products that solve skin problems and make people feel good. Part of feeling good is knowing that I am here to ensure that my products are safe.

So, I suspect you are talking about the ranking on the EWG Skin Deep database. You should probably direct the question to them, and you might start by asking why Aloe Vera has a 3 ranking (if 100% natural).

The database is an excellent tool and has been abused by companies in the past selling just plain water to get a 0 ranking.  Also, the database is an accumulation of many databases. The EWG does not have its own broad spectrum testing program. I have long questioned the numeric ranking system versus a pass/fail system or a category ranking similar to the way California ranks restaurants. Where you have a choice of eating at an A establishment or not at a B

Thank you for your questions and taking the time to contact us.  I hope I have answered them to your satisfaction.  Bob

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Galleyon Antibacterial Foaming Soap is Now Supercharged

Antibacterial Foaming SoapGalleyon Natural Antibacterial Foaming Soap has been a cornerstone of Keys for near 15 years. Galleyon is an alternative to soaps that contained Triclosan. Unlike antibacterial soaps, it is not a biocide, so it does not kill our skin’s natural Probiome. It reduces the levels of harmful bacteria without harming the natural colonies of bacteria on our skin.

Antibacterial Foaming Soap & More

Over the years, Galleyon has become much more. Surgeons and medical workers have been known to wash with a clinical bacteriacide and then wash with Galleyon to protect their skin from the bactericidal soaps and gloves they have to wear. A car mechanic reports how great Galleyon was at removing automotive grease and grime. Teens like to shower with Galleyon because it tingles, smells good and makes them feel good. Runners and athletes love it as a whole body soap, and even surfers use it to get rid of the crud they surf through. All the interesting stuff.

The secret to Galleyon is the Lakota Sioux Spearmint Essential oil and the blood orange essential oils we use. The spearmint is off the scale for quality and bacteria reducing properties. The blood orange essential oil is cleansing, deep cleaning and very friendly to the skin. Our base Castile soap was designed to be low alkalinity and brags to be the mildest Castile available. Put them together with avocado oil, and you have Galleyon.

So What Is New?

To the naturally cleansing Castile base soap, we add the spearmint blood orange and avocado oil. What is different is that we have figured out how to get more of the spearmint and blood orange into the soap base without separating. More is better, right? The main benefit is that all the benefits of the essential oils are now in higher concentration without affecting the gentleness of the product. Galleyon’s pH is the same as it was, but the intensity and cleansing properties are better now.

What you will notice is a stronger scent of spearmint and a bit of a raspberry scent coming from the California Blood Orange essential oil.

For our cult full body users, you will notice more tingle and a softer feel. All without a price increase!

Enjoy Galleyon Antibacterial Foaming Soap.

Antibacterial Foaming Soap


Avoid Triclosan

Read Our Position
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PurPlay Classic – A Personal Lubricant For Dryness

personal lubricant for drynessPurPlay Classic Has Suprised Us!  A Very Pleasant Surprise.

We have learned a great deal very quickly after launching PurPlay just a month ago.  One thing that is clear is that it is much more.  It is also a personal lubricant for dryness.

We began to think about the PurPlay product line nearly five years ago when women would ask what they could use for vagina personal lubricant for dryness, chafing and minor discomfort from the weather, traveling, etc. Our initial answer was Tortuga lotion and then later AvoJel.

We love to hear from our friends and Keys customers are particularly vocal about what they want and what they like. Over the years, we heard lots of suggestions, and one that was lingering along was the area of a personal lubricant for dryness.  About two years ago, the low rumble of voices became a loud chorus asking us to do something. Customers complained that personal lubricants were full of chemicals. They complained that some reduced sensitivity because they were too thick. Others complained that water-based lubes only lasted a few minutes. Our customers got louder and louder asking for a Keys style of product that was natural, functional, vegan and gluten-free.

PurPlay Classic

Classic was our first experimental personal lubricant product. We looked for oils that when combined mirrored and mimicked natural sexual lubricant produced by men and women. Viscosity and slip were critical to match while sensitivity was a very close third. It was both easy and hard to figure out the right oils because only a few oils are near-water in viscosity, produce good slip with heightened sensitivity, and that would last without reapplying. We discovered that if we refined coconut oil to remove the aggressive properties and blended in, at temperature, organic avocado oil that it nearly resembled the lubricants we all naturally produce. It worked, and beta testers roared.

You learn a lot in Beta Testing

All Keys products are reviewed a tried by people before we productize them. They testers are called Alpha and Beta. Alpha testers test a product before the ingredients and formulation are complete. Beta testers are a different group that examines the final formulations before the product launches and test for precise questions. Sharing this is important to recognize that during Beta, you learn the answers to your specific questions and can re4fine the product based on that premise. When you launch, you learn about many things that you could not envision from actual customers. Often what you learn are revolutionary and exciting features. The critical thing for a designer, you have to listen carefully.

PurPlay Classic – Personal Lubricant For Dryness

Some of our team predicted that PurPlay Classic would be the top seller right out of the gate. They were right, but not for the reasons they gave. All said that Classic would be first because it was pure, chemical-free and so heightened sensitivity for both men and women that it would be a hit. It was and is a hit, but for other reasons.  Yes, it is a world-class personal lubricant, but much more as we are learning.  It is truly a world class personal lubricant for dryness.

personal lubricant for drynessWe harken back to our original customers from nearly five years ago that asked for a personal lubricant that would help with daily vaginal dryness and the associated discomfort that includes chafing. Little did we realize how big a deal this was for many women. So, more than half of the sales of PurPlay Classic seem to be from women seeking a daily lubricant that is comforting. Classic is just that, and you can feel it by spraying a little on your fingers.

Bob and I have a rule in our lives that products that come into our home have to have more than one purpose. PurPlay Classic is probably the best sexual, personal lubricant available. It is also functional in helping women to find daily comfort. Adding to the feelings of safety by being chemical-free, vegan and gluten-free increase the value of PurPlay Classic.

We are just one month into a great and exciting product for us. I am confident I will be hearing and learning more from our customers about how and why they use our PurPlay products. I will be sure to share with you as the list builds.

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Tips – Thinning Lotions

Keys TipsThinning Keys Lotions

We get lots of questions on our customer service system.  This week the dominant question has to do with thinning Keys lotions in cold weather.  We generally get very unique questions which is why we don’t have a FAQ page.  We answer each question individually.  Sometime we do get a burst of questions that are similar.  In the future, as we receive similar questions we will post them here as well.

Over the last couple of weeks we have had a number of questions regarding the viscosity (thinning) of some of our lotions.

We think the question is coming up because of cold weather around the country.  So, first thing, Keys does not use glycols in our products.  Glycols keep a product viscosity consistent over a wide range of temperatures.  Thinning can be done by raising the temperature or adding water.

Most of the question circle around how to go about thinning our lotions.  Some request us to make a thinner lotion.  Thinning our products in the manufacturing process lessen the quality, so we won’t do that.

There are some tricks that include heating the bottle to around 90 degrees F.  Some people place the bottle near a window to catch some sunlight.  Add water as you apply to thin the lotion.  As the water evaporates on the skin, the lotion will be more even on the skin and deeper in the pores.

The reality is that if we made our lotions by thinning, we would lose some of the emollience.

So here are the tricks:

  • Heat the lotion to nearly skin temperature which is typically 90 degrees F
  • Put a drop of a lotion in the palm of your hand and add a few drops of water.  Be your own judge of how much water to add.
  • Apply lotions to a wet face after washing.  Again, the lotion will thin and go into the pores.  Allow your face to air dry.

Do not use these tricks with Solar Rx Sunscreen/Moisturizer as thinning it will reduce the efficacy on the SPF.

Keys does not use preservatives and all of our lotions are water soluble.  Do not dilute the lotion in the bottle as you may expose the contents to airborne bacteria.

Hope this helps!

Mickey

If you would like to purchase our lotions you can go to our store by clicking here.

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New Keys Eye Butter Airless Pump

A Keys Top Selling Product Now in a New Airless Pump

Eye Butter is a wildly successful product for us.  In fact, Eye Butter has been a top selling Keys product since it was introduced almost 15 years ago.  The anti-aging properties, anti-allergenics, soothing, anti-puffies and makeup friendly properties are Hollywood and everyday proven.  Just as popular for men as it is for women, Eye Butter has been ranked the finest most effective eye cream by Hollywood makeup artists.  ..and it is all natural whole ingredients.

So, how could we make it better.  We can’t improve Eye Butter itself, but we can improve how it is packaged.  It was now about 4 years ago that our customers asked us to create an airless pump so people could travel with a more compact container.  We found a airless pump that worked and the pump version of Eye Butter became the most popular container almost overnight.  People still buy the Eye Butter in the jar because it is more traditional and it was easier to get a small amount.

As quickly as the Eye Butter airless pump became popular, we started to get suggestions.

What People Asked For

  • Could you make the pump more precise?
  • Could you make the container body transparent so you can see how much product is left?
  • Could you make the container easier to hold

So, we did it and we are pleased to introduce the new Eye Butter 15ml Airless Pump today.  Ant order from today on will come in the new container.

Same great Eye Butter in a New Travel Container!

Eye Butter also makes a great lip balm to make lipstick look bolder and brighter, eliminate chapped lips quickly and for its anti-allergy properties.  Like all Keys products, it is Vegan, Gluten-Free, Free of manmade chemicals, soy-free and non-GMO


Eye Butter – Refreshing Anit-Aging Eye Cream

NEW! Airless Travel Pump.  Smoother & Silkier

Natural Eye & Lip Cream with Cucumber, Avocado Oil and Shea

  • Keys Whole Natural Cucumber Extract
  • Softens & Hydrates
  • Aloe Vera Conditions & Conceals
  • For Sensitive Skin
  • Deep Penetrating
  • Makeup Friendly
  • Moistuizing
  • Reduces fine lines
  • Will not sting eyes

The Secret

Eye Butter combines an age old secret to eye care with pharmaceutical grade ingredients to soften eye tissue, reduce fine lines and tighten the skin. The glowing effect brightens the skin around the eyes, enhances skin color and is a great natural foundation for mineral eye makeup. Eye Butter like all Keys products is first and foremost skin therapy.

The secret to Eye Butter is naturally distilled organic cucumbers. We distill our own cucumber to create an extract that is high in the ingredients that have been known for years to tighten and tone eye tissue. Actor and models have placed cucumber slices on their eyes to reduce puffiness and to tighten eye tissue. Our cucumber extract has all of those natural features in a concentration you can feel and see.

The secrets to eye butter does not stop with our cucumber extract. We combine a natural filtered and unprocessed Shea Butter from Ghana that has the highest fatty acid levels we have been able to find with pharmaceutical grade oils in therapeutic proportions. Avocado, Black Cumin and Carrot Seed oil hydrate, rejuvenate, tighten and create a soft glow around the eyes. Aloe Vera creates a prismatic effect similar to Luminos and creates a natural clinging action to gently hold eye makeup.

There is More!

Eye Butter has natural anti allergen features as well. Eyes that are irritated by pollen, danader and other allergens receive an interesting barrier when you apply Eye Butter around the eyes. These natural and made allergens cling to the surface of Eye Butter providing a shield protecting sensitive eye tissue from itching. This has a great natural anti aging benefit because rubbing the eyes causes skin to sag and look older, tired and irritated. With Eye Butter you get younger looking skin without the itching during allergy season.

Keys Eye Butter is featured on the Environmental Working Group Skin Deep Report as one of the safest around the eye products on the market.

”Eye Butter was created to be our first product for Hollywood. In 2006 we were invited by the Environmental Working Group to attend a presentation in Santa Monica California to 300 Hollywood makeup artists. Eye Butter was a natural for the group because all of our researched showed that most of the hard work by makeup artists was around the eyes. We put our Eye Butter in the goody bag and when they opened our oversized sample, the room filled with the smell of fresh cucumber. It was an overnight hit and many of our makeup artist advisors today were in that room.” Wendy Steele , Key CEO and Founder

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Congrats America! You Did It. You Voted With Your Wallets

You Voted With Your Wallets!  Natural Products Are Mainstream in Grocery Stores.

In my book, “Chemical-Free Skin Health®” I suggested that the fastest and best way to bring about change in Natural Products was to buy products that were pure and clean. Voting with your wallets. Boycotting the junk also sent a huge message.  Well, you did it.  The result is that not only have you put natural products front and center on store shelves, but you have convinced major brands to return to their roots by offering natural wholesome and clean products.

walletsI recently read a draft report by a research firm that specializes in retail store trends.  They noted in a recent study that many mainline brands like Campbell soup have initiated and brought out new natural brands that are simple and wholesome alternatives.  Campbell’s “Well YES” brand was singled out as an example of how many brands have shifted back to simple foods.  Same was noted for personal care.

walletsI decided to do something totally out of character.  I went to a Kroger Fred Meyers store in Newport Oregon and just walked the aisles.  This store has a natural products section, but it was very apparent that all the food aisles were focused on natural products.  As a point of reference, when a retailer puts products at eye level and easy to grab, that is what is called “First Position” meaning that it is priority.  Walking the soup aisle, Amy’s and Campbell Well Yes were front and center.  The jam and peanut butter section was even more noticeable.  Traditional brands like Skippy were bottom shelf with Jason’s, Smucker’s Natural and other pure brands were front and center.  The rest of the store was the same as was the conventional health and beauty aisles.

So, you did it.  You voted with your wallets and sent a message to the manufacturers that you wanted a change and they responded.  Good on you and good on them for listening.

I must also say that I hope you have learned a lesson that your voice works, but a voice that speaks directly to those that can make a change.  The manufacturers!  Stop wasting your money by donating to those that claim to be trying to change the government to protect us all from the evils of bad manufacturers.  Keep your dollars in your wallets and spend them on products that are good for you.  Trust me, funky questionable products that sit on the shelf get discontinued quickly by retailers that see them gathering dust.  Those manufacturers that get their products returned because no one is buying them speaks volumes.  Always, always, Vote With Your Wallets.  It works every time.

walletsWhen we started 15 years ago, Keys promoted natural functional products that solved problems and make people feel good.  We said, “and by the way, they are natural.”  Today we still market the features, benefits and advantages of our natural products.  Because of the natural products food movement, we now have a huge following by people wanting to solve their skin disorders with natural products.  We are celebrating the turnaround…or really the return to natural.

I guess a simple message is that the P&G’s of the world are really not so bad.  They just follow the money.  If you ask for junk, that’s what you get.  If you ask for good, that’s what you get.

So leave your money in your wallets.  Spend it wisely on products that you know what is in the container.

Congrats!  You just learned how powerful you and your wallets can be.

Bob

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Cold, Flu Bronchitis? Keys VaporJel To The Rescue!

VaporJelBronchitis Sucks. Keys VaporJel To The Rescue!

In the not so long ago past if you wanted some fast relief from congestion you took the vapors from Smelling Salts. The problem was that you would have been killing your lungs and smell nerve receptors.  Keys VaporJel is the updated natural solution!

Be Careful Using Old Remedies

Long long ago, people sought relief from chest and respiratory issues using a small bottle kept in the purse or pocket. They were called smelling salts. Often people would take a snort to clear their heads of the fuzzies as well as helping with the symptoms of colds, the flu and tough to solve bronchitis. Unfortunately these little bottles could kill you because they we made from ammonia.

It seems like all sorts of respiratory ailments are coming year round these days. Keys VaporJel may be the fast fix to recovery.   VaporJel is our avocado based jel with menthol, camphor and eucalyptus. Spread a little on your chest at night and a dab under the nose during the day to open up your air passages and release congestion.

My VaporJel Santa Fe Experience

For the holidays, I flew from sea level, 80% humidity and 80º F to Santa Fe which is at 7,000 feet, 20º F and nearly 0% humidity. I think the airplane introduced a bug and a few days into my trip, I thought that I was having altitude sickness.   It turned into an obvious bout with bronchitis. Vapor Jel to the rescue. I remember my grandparents and their little smelling salts bottle. So I tried the same thing with VaporJel. I opened the jar and took in a deep breath. I felt instant relief from the burning chest sensation.   I decided to put some on a wash cloth soaked with hot water. Better! Then I started to apply it under my nose and the relief was longer lasting. At night, I rubbed it on my chest which helped me sleep.  Relief!

Go VaporJel! You Rock!

Now, VaporJel will not cure bronchitis, but it sure helped with my symptoms.

Avocado oil based, natural stimulants that work without petrolatum and chemicals!  Providing natural relief.

VaporJel

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FDA Bans Triclosan – EPA, Your Turn

Triclosan and 18 Other Chemicals Banned In Antibacterial Soaps and Hand Sanitizers

TriclosanBy Bob Root

Keys CTO and Author of Chemical-Free Skin Health®

I must first admit that I have little use for Non Governmental Organizations (NGO’s), industry consultants and individuals who gain income, notoriety or donations based on creating fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) in the minds of consumers.  I believe that the best path to information is data.  A point-of-view or opinion that is not based in facts wastes everyone’s time.

What is Triclosan?

Triclosan is a chemical developed by a Swiss group called Ciba.  They were acquired by BASF in April 2009.  Triclosan is a broad spectrum bactericide that kills all forms of bacteria.  This includes the good and the bad.  For more background on why our good bacteria being killed off affects our skin’s eco system, please read an article I wrote in February of 2011 titled, “ARE WE KILLING OUR SKIN’S ECOSYSTEM? ”

The FDA Ban of Triclosan!

TriclosanSo, the facts!  The US FDA has banned Triclosan and 18 other chemicals being used in soaps and hand sanitizers.  They have not stated just their lack of efficacy, they have been banned because of concerns to humans!  Banned!   Do not take my word for it, read here what the FDA said in the public filing.  Evidence shows that not only are they non-affective, they can cause damage to human and animals who have been and continue to be exposed to Triclosan.  These include concerns over propagating Staph, hormone disruption, cancer and destruction of the human microbiome.

The good news is that the FDA has stepped in and banned Triclosan’s use.  Many leading consumer products companies have already announce removal of the chemicals including Triclosan.

Triclosan – I Told You So in 2010

TriclosanIn my book, Chemical-Free Skin Health®, I dedicated a chapter to Triclosan and other biocides.  My original thoughts was to right a few word in a much more all encompassing chapter.  As I studied the chemical Triclosan more, it ultimately became an entire chapter because even in 2010, evidence was already huge that Triclosan was detrimental to human life.  Below is the chapter from my book for you to read.  I ask you to read it because the FDA ruling is just the tip of the iceberg.

Triclosan – EPA, It is Your Turn to Weigh-In

I write this article, not to reinforce what I wrote 6 years ago, it is to make you aware that Triclosan is used in much more than soaps and hand sanitizers.  It is in our food, other personal care products, clothing and food preparation products.  Again, read the chapter from my book below.  As I said, it became a chapter because the threat is broader and it is the EPA’s turn to also ban the use of Triclosan and some parabens being used in food wrap, antibacterial clothing, sporting goods, toys, children’s car seats and many animal products.  The same cause and effect the FDA details in their announcement also applies to products that are under the control of the EPA.

Do Better When You Know Better

There is even a bigger message in the Triclosan ban.  Become aware so that you do better for yourself and your family by knowing better.   The reality is that it has taken some advocates of reform nearly ten years to get the FDA to act.  The good news is that they did.  The bad news is that their are hundreds of other chemicals in use today that advocates have presented data showing their detrimental effects on humans and animals.  Yet their is a very simple solution and it is back to the future.

You have two choices.  Burden yourself with self-study to find out what all the chemicals are that could cause potential harm or merely switch to natural products that have simple whole natural ingredients.  Whether it is Haagen Daz Five ice cream with only five ingredients, my products  and those of others who offer simple man-made chemical-free ingredients, you can simplify your life by embracing trusted brands.  Then you will also send a pocketbook message to the big brands that people want to return to the simpler past where everything is natural that we put into and on our bodies.  Back to the future?  Simply, 60 years ago nearly everything we ate and put in or on our bodies was naturally derived.  My hallucination is that in the not too distant future, we will return to natural products that are chemical-free.

Congrats FDA!  EPA, your turn!  People, it is time to get wise and go natural!

You can also read more by purchasing my book on Amazon  It is available in paperback or Kindle.  Chemical-Free Skin Health is also available from the Keys Online store by Clicking Here

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Excerpt from Chemical-Free Skin Health® by Bob Root

Copyright 2010-2016 by Orion Learning International Inc.  M42 Publishing

Just as a note, I have also attached the chapter as a PDF document if you want to send it to your friends. Click the image to download

[bsk-pdf-manager-pdf id=”4″ featuredimage=”yes”]

Chapter 12: My Two Worst Public Enemies! Triclosan and Parabens

TriclosanEarly on I told you about how the skin works. Overly simplifying a particular facet of the skin, the bacteria that exist on it keep our skin in balance. Washing our skin and particularly the face removes the remnants of the bacteria, dirt, pollutants and dead skin. No matter how hard we try to remove the bacteria, it is nearly impossible unless we use germicides or bactericides like parabens and triclosan.

Here is my simple concern. If I can put a paraben in a product to kill off bacteria and germs in the container, what does it do to the good bacteria on my skin? If I wash my hands with a hand sanitizer that contains the broad spectrum bactericide, triclosan, what does it do to my good bacteria?

Search as I might, I have not found any evidence that parabens and triclosan are tuned killers. Meaning that they waste the bad guys and protect the good. Everything that I have read supports the contrary.

I have talked to dermatologists, doctors and scientists asking their concerns about what is going on in personal care and cosmetics that concern them. Over 90% express concern over parabens and triclosan because of the long term health effects. Not from the chemicals, but from the effect it has on killing the probiotics of our skin. All express an even greater concern about these chemicals being used in our food, toothpaste and mouth washes.

You can choose to read this chapter or not. It is somewhat geeky, but necessary to explain my perceptions.

What I believe is that the only thing known to man that kills the good bacteria on our skin are parabens and triclosan. Remove the good bacteria and our balance is disrupted. Disrupt the balance and those bacteria that come at us first are the worst kind and literally attack unprotected skin.

I personally believe that these two chemical types are responsible for many of the skin disorders that doctors see.

Also, it took western medicine a long time to buy into the fact that we need probiotics to help our gut perform. I believe it is also time that we start to explore probiotics for our skin.

Finally, I do believe that the people that have link MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) outbreaks to parabens and triclosan are probably correct. Only time and research will prove them right or wrong. Indications are they are correct and it is probably time to eliminate parabens and triclosan from your life.

So read on if you want!

Triclosan: The Biocide that Creates Super Bugs?

FACT vs FUD is a chapter in this book as well as an article on our blog. In this overly inflammatory news based society of ours, my resistance is to publish anything that is not based in research that is a bit beyond a theory.

Some History:

One of the inspirations for this book and this article was an experience I had while in a store outside of Dayton Ohio. I was not too far from the headquarters of Proctor & Gamble (Cincinnati) delivering a speech about the Dirty Dozen at an annual event the store promotes. Probably 200 in attendance, I went through the Dirty Dozen chemicals created by the Marin County Cancer Project. At the end, I provided some chemicals of concern, so I went back through my “most feared” list. In the book, I describe that some of the Dirty Dozen are much more damaging than others, but tend to be used in only discrete segments and in only some products. Some ingredients like parabens are much more widely used often in multiple doses during the manufacturing process elevating their concentrations in products to well beyond the called for percentages by the chemical maker. During my speech, I invited questions as we went along and there were plenty.

At the end, I voiced my concern that triclosan was perhaps my greatest fear because it is so powerful a biocide. I had explained earlier that triclosan is the main ingredient in hand sanitizers and antibacterial soaps. A biocide, by design, kills gram positive and gram negative bacteria as well as most all bacteria. My concern all along has been two very important concerns:

  1. If it indiscriminately kills all bacteria, then what does it do to the flora-probiotic on our skin?
  2. Will the destruction of all bacteria on the skin create super-bugs that morph and become resistant to both the biocide and antibiotics?

As I always do when speaking to a group, I try to connect with the eyes of people in my audience. It is my way of trying to figure out if I am connecting with them. In my corporate life, I received training on how to read an audience as well. As I call it, ‘Squirming Around’ is a big flag that I have touched a nerve. As a CEO of a publicly traded company, you better believe that I experienced this at every shareholder meeting. So, this day, I was thrust back to my corporate life by a gentleman that had asked no questions, been very polite and had friendly eyes. When I lumped triclosan in with parabens as my major concern, his hand shot skyward as to immediately interrupt me. I obliged by stopping to acknowledge his question.

He asked, “Why would you add the main ingredient in hand sanitizers with that of preservatives used in almost every product made from personal care, to toothpaste, to food?”

First things first, I knew immediately that this person was from the industry because the question was one I would have expected in a meeting inside a research and development process. Not being ever deterred by confrontation, I answered both technically and emotionally. Here is my initial response.

“I am more concerned with Triclosan than a Methyl Paraben for four primary reasons:

  1. Triclosan has been used in hospital and scientific environments for many years because it is the most effect biocide.
  2. The concentration of Triclosan in a function specific product like antibacterial soaps is much higher and therefore of greater concern to me because it does a much more wide reaching job of killing all bacteria on the skin including the good bugs!
  3. The destruction from Triclosan is so powerful and long lived compare to parabens that I have more than a subtle concern that what bacteria arrive back on the scene will be the worst kind like staph, e. Coli etc.
  4. I also worry that these strains of bacteria will grow back with a vengeance and become resistant to both Triclosan and known antibiotics.”

The man stood straight up as if to confront me. I could also tell that I had just scared the hell out of the rest of the audience. Before I could temper my comments with the fact that this was my personal concern and that I had not gathered all the facts, he spoke.

He said, “I am a scientist that works down the road. First, I am a parent and father. I do not care that we have the best health insurance; I worry about what we expose our kids to. We have had an outbreak of Staph in the middle schools in this area and what you are saying is that because we require our kids to wash with antibacterial soap containing Triclosan that we are exposing them to the potential of transmitted staph infections like the ones we are experiencing now?”

My only answer had to be from the heart and not my corporate training to dodge the question. I said, Yes!”

He shook his head and sat down. Honestly, you could have heard a mouse burp in that room! I tried to interject some humor and my time was up. The people filed out of the room as the other speaker got set up. The man approached as did the sponsors from the store.

The sponsor thanked me for the informative talk and quickly said, can you send me something about this. She offered that she was a Cancer survivor and had a more than passing concern.

The man also echoed by adding that he was privileged to be able to read many documents about uses of chemicals. He said that what he always noticed is that most have warnings of irritation when used in high percentages and that antibacterial soap using Triclosan actually exceeded the minimum percentages. I asked if he could provide me with percentage data and he said; “No! I am not allowed to do that!” I got the message. I walked back to my team that was exhibiting at the health fare and told them of the experience. I shared, that I only wish I had a study to hand to everyone that at least echoed my fears.

Over the last two years, I have shared the story with colleagues. This morning in July of 2010, I received an email with a copy of the Opinion from the EU Scientific Directorate! Being a geek, I read all 56 pages and decided to sit down to finish this chapter of the book.

Remember this is an opinion and I would encourage you to read the entire document. There must be additional testing. We do know that bacteria exposed to destructive agents does morph into “super bugs” in many cases. This opinion echoes much of that concern. In one sense, I am pleased that this concern of mine and others has now taken another step up in the process of science.

My opinion! For what it is worth, science generally follows an orderly path. The Mandelbrot theory says that, if that what we see occurs in a large scale, it will occur in a small scale. If we can kill bacteria…good and bad… with a large dose of a chemical, then small doses delivered more frequently and repeatedly will have the same effect. The other scientific principle that comes to mind here is Occam’s Razor which is the principle that “entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity” or that the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. So, to me it makes sense from a logical perspective that using a chemical like Triclosan everyday in large does will have a long term adverse effect on the flora of the skin. Only the test of time and scientific studies will bring the concern to even higher levels.

What I can share is that I personally avoid anything on or in my body designed to kill something like germs, bacteria and microbes. Like all of us, I have had to take antibiotics and we know from the warnings that sustained use can make them ineffective. Following Occam’s Razor, I also believe that is true of these chemicals under various names that are designed to make my life more pure…Purity at the sake of what?

So, my mother may not have been right that eating dirt was all that bad for me ☺

Triclosan: The Biocide that keeps on giving!

Most of the free world including the US requires that Triclosan be listed somewhere on the label if it is used in a product. But how about if it is used in product packaging or molded into materials. Unregulated therefore no requirement for listing. Herein is the fallacy of confusing consequence with sequence.

Have you ever wondered why cheese seems to last longer than it used to? Have you wondered how companies can claim that if you buy their storage products that food will last longer? Have you wondered how a manufacturer could claim that their running socks are antibacterial?

We know that Triclosan is used in sanitizers and toothpaste as well as antibacterial soaps. Did you ever wonder what chemical they use in making utensils, cooking equipment, cutting boards and even sport clothing to make them antibacterial. You guessed it, Triclosan. The white powdery substance can be molded into products to make virtually antibacterial. Many food packages are molded with Triclosan to make them antibacterial to preserve the food longer.

If there was any reason to buy organic and local at the farmers market, this is a darned good one for me.

So, like phthalates, Triclosan is not just in personal care. They found phthalates in children’s toys and car dashboards. Triclosan is in much more than antibacterial soap. So here is a partial list of products that use Triclosan:

  • Sanitizers
  • Antibacterial soap (really a detergent)
  • Deodorant
  • Toothpaste
  • Shaving Cream
  • Mouthwash
  • Skin Care
  • Makeup
  • Acne Products
  • Antimicrobial Creams
  • Cleaning Supplies
  • Kitchen Utensils
  • Food Storage
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Trash Bags
  • Toys
  • Bedding (People and Pets)
  • Socks
  • Sports Clothing
  • Child Car Seats

Someone asked me if I could link a direct connection to MRSA (Methicillin Resistent Staphylococcus Aureus) and Triclosan. I said, “Honestly, I do not know!” Do I believe that it is connected? Yes! So you can imagine my surprise when I read an article in a medical journal prescribe sits baths for MRSA suffers in a solution of 2% Tricolsan!

Triclosan is used in many common household products that you would not expect.

OK, I am starting to sound like a radical working at an NGO! Environmental issues are big as well.

Parabens!

Parabens…Good Guys or Bad Guys?

As a part of my ongoing series of looking at the Dirty Dozen Chemicals shown to provide elevated Cancer rates in people and animals, in this article, I outline why we do not use parabens leaving the judgmental diagnosis to the NGO’s attacking them. The Dirty Dozen Chemicals are a list of 12 developed originally by the Marin County Cancer Project which at the time, had the highest Cancer Rates in the US. Followed by Search For The Cause and Teens Turning Green the list is now designated the Dirty Thirty.

 

So, are parabens good guys or bad guys? Both it seems and there is a reason why we do not use them as well.

Below is a scavenged description of parabens from Wikipedia.   On the surface and from a chemical perspective they do their job. Many chemists and companies support their use based on a belief of safety. I believe that they are looking at the wrong reasons for safety.

Our society seems to primarily look at safety as, “will what we put on our skin hurt us directly?” I believe that we should be looking at whether it hurts us based on contact and will it cause something else to hurt us because of it.

So first let’s try to understand what parabens are and why some manufacturers use them. Here is that Wikipedia description:

Parabens are a class of chemicals widely used as preservatives in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. Parabens are effective preservatives in many types of formulas. These compounds, and their salts, are used primarily for their bactericidal and fungicidal properties. They can be found in shampoos, commercial moisturizers, shaving gels, personal lubricants, topical/parenteral pharmaceuticals, spray tanning solution and toothpaste. They are also used as food additives.

Their efficacy as preservatives, in combination with their low cost, their long history of safe use and the inefficacy of natural alternatives like grapefruit seed extract (GSE), probably explains why parabens are so commonplace. They are becoming increasingly controversial, however, and some organizations which adhere to the precautionary principle object to their everyday use.

Chemistry

Parabens are esters of para-hydroxybenzoic acid, from which the name is derived. Common parabens include methylparaben (E number E218), ethylparaben (E214), propylparaben (E216) and butylparaben. Less common parabens include isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, benzylparaben and their sodium salts.

Occurrence

Some parabens are found naturally in plant sources. For example, methylparaben is found in blueberries,  where it acts as an antimicrobial agent. However, when parabens are eaten, they are metabolized and lose the ester group, making them less strongly estrogen-mimicking.

( Bob Comment) Part of the rub here is a number of studies that link parabens to breast Cancer because of these properties, but let’s not get too off track!

Synthesis

All commercially used parabens are synthetically produced, although some are identical to those found in nature. They are produced by the esterification of para-hydroxybenzoic acid with the appropriate alcohol. para-Hydroxybenzoic acid is in turn produced industrially from a modification of the Kolbe-Schmitt reaction, using potassium phenoxide and carbon dioxide.

Now that you are an expert on parabens, I think it is fair to talk about the pros and cons of them.

Remember that I believe that it is an indirect result of the parabens that is as important to look at as well as the direct result of their actions.

The pros of parabens or grapefruit seed extract are that they kill bacteria and fungus inside products. It is very difficult to sterilize containers and apparatus without using chemicals. The technique we use is super-heated steam on our equipment, but those parabens do a really good job of killing microbes, gram positive and gram negative rods. The con is that they do a good job of killing bacteria on our skin as well.

You might say that is good, but much research shows that what we want to do is inhibit bacteria growth on our skin while permitting flora bacteria to exist as it does in nature. To me, it is sort of like drinking parabens in hope they will kill diseased bacteria in our gut in hopes that they will leave all that good bacteria we want alone. If science could figure that out, it would be major… just has not happened yet.

Frankly, when I developed our first products, I did not know what parabens were. So it was simple…ignorance was bliss. I did know that I needed a preservative and my aboriginal friends suggested rosemary. Turns out it is also a natural high grade antioxidant, but for me, it minimized bacteria growth in our natural products.

When a contract manufacturer approached me to make our products, I politely listened as the salesperson told me why I had to use parabens. My silence forced him to exasperation and he blurted out, “What would you do if the FDA said you have to use parabens?” My answer? I would mark the products refrigerate after opening! He was not amused and yet that is exactly what I would do.

It turns out that we have traced part of Wendy’s reaction to prescription products after her Melanoma to a paraben reaction. Admittedly rare, I personally believe that it is more common than we think.

I will let our friends at the Breast Cancer Fund fight the paraben battle on their own front. I would encourage you to research that more for yourself. 

Why We Do Not Use Parabens

Simply, I have done enough research and read enough that parabens in our personal care, household products and mouth care kill all forms of bacteria on our skin and in our gut. Like studies have shown with triclosan and germicides used in household products, my own studies have shown these same agents kill the natural flora on the skin and in the gut. What I believe happens next is that the really bad bacteria including gram positive rods like e. Coli and Staph (MRSA) have an opportunity to come back with a vengeance and attack our systems freely.

For example, it is common in our microbiology lab to take an agar petri dish and smear a natural ingredient on it to see if colony, gram positive or gram negative rods (bacteria) show up in an accelerated 72 hour test. What is not common, but we have done it, are to take a sample of “bugs” and kill them and then watch what grows back first in an open air environment. More than not, we see some harmless colony bacteria show up first, but then some really nasty bacteria take over and on most occasions we see fungus appear to feed on the bacteria. Can’t prove it, but I have to wonder if all this MRSA staph that has shown up in our middle schools is not a direct link to the triclosan in antibacterial soaps and the parabens in all of our products.

Okay, now that I have you flipped out a bit, I did a test of ten products at one of my labs and measured the cumulative amount of parabens in them. What I mean is that I know that the providers of parabens suggest a range or percentage to use. Let’s say it is 0.5% of the total solution. When I tested the products all showed excessive amounts of parabens well beyond the recommended dose. Knowing that chemists strive for economy, I began to wonder why the levels were so high…high enough to kill anything.   I could not figure out why until I was giving a speech on the Dirty Dozen near Dayton Ohio and one chemist from P&G asked how many ingredients were typically in natural products. I answered, “probably 10 to 15.” He laughed and said our average is 45. It suddenly dawned on me how the paraben levels could be so high in the products I tested. The answer, the ingredient/chemical suppliers were also using parabens to preserve their raw material. Think it through! The manufacturer puts 0.5% into the product and each of the suppliers of those 40+ chemicals put 0.5% into the raw materials. Simply, we are being overdosed with parabens and every product we use adds to the equation. Ten products times the 1.6% average we tested is a daily dose of 16% on our skin. I think the most recent statistics I heard from the EWG is that the average woman uses 12 products a day containing parabens and men average 6 products. That means that if I am correct with my average that women are getting ~19.2% paraben contact. We have always joked that “chemists add and engineers subtract, but maybe it is not a joke.

Our Simple View

To overly simplify the reason we do not use parabens is that we believe that what comes out of the bottle designed to kill bacteria in the packaging also kills the flora on our skin and our gut facilitating bad super-bug bacteria to grow in its place that also facilitates fungal growth and imbalance.

Right now, this is a tested theory long from scientific fact. What if I am right!

See, I told my mother eating dirt was good!

BTW, The Mayo Clinic states, “Most MRSA infections occur in hospitals or other health care settings, such as nursing homes and dialysis centers. It’s known as health care-associated MRSA, or HA-MRSA. Older adults and people with weakened immune systems are at most risk of HA-MRSA. More recently, another type of MRSA has occurred among otherwise healthy people in the wider community. This form, community-associated MRSA, or CA-MRSA, is responsible for serious skin and soft tissue infections and for a serious form of pneumonia.”

I personally believe that people are walking in with the MRSA and when surgery is performed that is when it invades. Maybe hospitals should pretest for MRSA and an incoming inspection….Do you think?

 Chapter Quick Notes:

  1. Parabens and Triclosan are bactericides and germicides. That means they kill all bacteria indiscriminately. Good or bad bacteria alike, it they just kill.
  1. Parabens and Triclosan indiscriminately kill the good probiotic bacteria on the skin. My belief is that this permits bad bacteria attacking the undefended skin.
  2. Washing the skin does not remove our probiotic good bacteria from the skin.
  3. Bactericides cause an imbalance on the skin possibly leading to many skin disorders.

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Dynamic Duo – Keys RediCare and Urban Shield

Urban Shield

Urban Shield a New Keys Star!

Just a few weeks ago we introduced our new line called Alternative Naturals™.  Among the inductees was a new product called Urban Shield.  Urban Shield has been in development for over five years and is a very close kin to Keys Super Star RediCare.  In fact, think of Urban Shield as a gel version of RediCare and you will be more right than you know.

As history goes, RediCare was first developed for the search and rescue teams that were returning from Hurricane Katrina.  Both dogs and people were covered with sores and skin disorders from the chemicals in the high waters around New Orleans.  It was designed as a sprayable lotion to cover large areas quickly to provide relief without rubbing.  It also worked on both long and short hair dogs to get to the skin quickly.  Both dogs and handlers quickly realized how fast and effective it was.  Bonus!  Because of the Neem and Karanja oil as well as other essential oils, it was also an incredibly effective insect repellant.  RediCare started its life as a sprayable therapy and quickly became known as a single universal go to product for people and dogs for all of its wonderful properties.

Not long after RediCare was introduced, the diabetic community discovered how quickly it would help with skin issues.  Customers reported to us that the itching, pain and disruptions began to disappear.

Not far after the diabetics discovered RediCare, so did those going through radiation treatment and chemotherapy.

Then, moms discovered that RediCare killed head lice.  We are still not sure how it does it, but reports continue that it works for lice and bed bugs.

Repelling more than 200 flying and drawling insect was a bonus for us and our customers with strong reports of high efficacy against fleas, ticks and mosquitoes as well as all sorts of a creepy crawlers.

Well, no surprise that Urban Shield contains most of the key ingredients that are contained in RediCare.  Those being, Neem, Karanja, Avocado Oil, Black Seed Oil and Carrot Seed Oil.  Envision a jelly with all the goodness of RediCare and you now know and understand Urban Shield.  Urban Shield has the same properties of RediCare in a gel form that has even more intensity.

If you love RediCare, you will really love Urban Shield.

urban shield

Click Here to got to Urban Shield on the Keys Online Store

Herein are some of the benefits of the key ingredients in Urban Shield.

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blog-avoAvocado oil –  valued for its skin regenerative and moisturizing properties.

Avocado contains oils which are similar to human skin oils – sebum.  Avocado offers the skin moisture. Avocado oil has both Vitamin A and a natural form of Retinol.  The Vitamin A component helps promote a healthy skin microbiome to reduce skin blemishes (acne).  The retinol component is whole and not esthered like synthetic Vitamin A.  It provides natural skin lightening, uniformity of texture and color as well as acting as a natural exfoliant without the use of abrasives or salts.  Avocado oil is also helpful in treating dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, acne and dry skin conditions.  Keys uses both a virgin expeller pressed avocado oil and a filtered pharmaceutical grade in therapeutic proportions.

  • Proteins and Fatty Acids. Avocado oil contains a high amount of proteins and unsaturated fats, both of which are strong skin agents. Avocado oil contains omega-3 fatty acids like those found in fish oil
  • Sterolin. Avocado oil is high in a substance called sterolin, which case studies have shown softening of the skin and reduce the incidence of age spots
  • Antioxidants. Avocado oil is rich in antioxidants, making it useful for healing sun or chemical damaged skin. Antioxidants like vitamins A, D and E in avocado cause the skin to be suppler, and are thus particularly good for dry or aged skin.
  • Lecithin and Potassium. Avocado oil contains lecithin and potassium, which are all highly beneficial for the skin as well as the hair.

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blog-carrotCarrot Seed Oil –  is an essential oil for treating dry skin and can provide a good level of protection against wrinkles and aging or liver spots.  It has many therapeutic values that are antiseptic, and cytophylactic,(stimulates cellular regeneration).

Carrot seed oil highly valued for skin care. It is used in skin creams to nourish, tighten, revitalize, and rejuvenate skin. It visibly improves skin tone, elasticity, and general skin health.  It is claimed to slow the progression of visible wrinkles. Carrot Seed Oil is calming and appropriate for irritated skin. It is a good, essential oil for anyone who spends time outdoors. Carrot seed oil has high activity antioxidant properties.

Carrot seed oil may be found in many formulas dealing with skin conditions ranging from revitalizing and toning to eczema and ageing.

Carrot Oil has chemicals with these properties – analgesic, androgenic, anti-acne, anti-aging and anti-asthmatic activity.  Carrot seed oil also assists in removing toxin and water build up in the skin giving it a fresher more firmer appearance. The aroma is earthy with a medium note.

At Keys, carrot seed oil makes up our base triangle of ingredients for the skin.  It is used in conjunction with Avocado oil and Black Cumin (black seed) oil

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blog-blackseedBlack Seed Oil aka Black Cumin – Nigella sativa is one the most revered medicinal seeds in history. Black cumin seeds were found in the tomb of Tutankhamun.  The oil is used externally, for beauty as well as for treating skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema.   We seek out the finest grade for our products.

  • Black Seed Oil Benefits for Eczema

Black seed oil has lots of positive benefits for the entire body, but especially for the skin. The vitamins, antioxidants and amino acids are just a few of the advantages. Taking black seed oil can improve skin overall, but it can also do much more than just give skin a healthy glow. For more extreme issues, like eczema, black seed oil can offer much-needed relief. The symptoms of eczema can be uncomfortable and often painful, but there is hope.

  • Soothing Properties of Black Seed Oil

People who suffer from eczema experience a sore, red rash that can show up all over the body. The rash is often accompanied by swelling and inflammation. Black seed oil has natural anti-inflammatory properties and is known to help with swelling. The fatty acids and Omega-3 in black seed oil help with moisturizing; therefore, rubbing the oil on the affected skin can help immediately lessen the pain and itching caused by the eczema. It also softens skin and helps with the dryness that often accompanies eczema. The benefits from topical use often provide instant relief.

  • Black Seed Oil Benefits for Your Skin

While ingesting black seed oil can have amazing overall benefits for your health, using black seed oil can also have huge benefits for your skin. Black seed oil promotes overall health, so obviously the skin will get some benefits as well. But for specific skin problems black seed oil could be the right herbal remedy for you. The oil can be used in a product or directly applied onto the skin. Here just a few of the benefits black seed oil has for your skin.

  • Using Black Seed Oil as a Moisturizer

Essential fatty acids maintain skin nourishment and hydration. Black seed oil can certainly help in this department. The body cannot recreate these fatty acids; they have to be replenished from an outside source. Oils help maintain the lipid barrier that protects the skin from day-to-day oxidation as well as harsher elements such as acne, scarring and overall aging. Black seed oil contains both amino and fatty acids that help shield the skin.

  • Antioxidants to Prevent Aging

Antioxidants are the number one way to fight aging. Oxidation degrades the skin’s cellular structure which gives the appearance of lines, wrinkles and discoloration. Black seed oil’s major component is thymoquinone, which is filled with antioxidants to prevent this kind of break down. Using the oil on your skin regularly can prevent the long term effects of aging, but can also immediately add a healthy glow to your face.

  • Other Vitamins and Benefits

The benefits of black seed oil don’t stop there. Black seed oil contains Vitamin A, which is known to reduce wrinkles and also shadows under the eyes. Vitamin A can also make skin sensitive to sunlight, so best to use it in the evenings before bed. Black seed oil also has antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. This stops certain skin infections as well as the spreading of acne. The anti-inflammation reduces overall puffiness in the face and skin.

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blog-neemNeem – In India, the tree is variously known as “Divine Tree”, “Heal All”, “Nature’s Drugstore”, “Village Pharmacy” and “Panacea for all diseases”. It is considered a major component in Ayurvedic medicine and is particularly prescribed for skin disease.  Neem oil is used for skin care such as acne, and keeping skin elasticity.  Neem has many skin healing properties and acts as a broad-spectrum insect repellent.

Neem oil is used for preparing cosmetics (soap, hair products, body hygiene creams, hand creams) and in Ayurvedic, Unani and folklore traditional medicine, in the treatment of a wide range of afflictions. The most frequently reported indications in ancient Ayurvedic writings are skin diseases, inflammations and fevers, and more recently rheumatic disorders, insect repellent and insecticide effects.

Traditional Ayurvedic uses of neem include the treatment of acne, fever, leprosy, malaria, ophthalmia and tuberculosis. Various folk remedies for neem include use as ananthelmintic, antifeedant, antiseptic, diuretic, emmenagogue, contraceptive, febrifuge, parasiticide, pediculocide and insecticide. It has been used in traditional medicine for the treatment of tetanus, urticaria, eczema, scrofula and erysipelas. Traditional routes of administration of neem extracts included oral, vaginal and topical use. Neem oil has an extensive history of human use in India and surrounding regions for a variety of therapeutic purposes. Puri (1999) has given an account of traditional uses and therapeutic indications and pharmacological studies of this oil, in his book on neem.

 Neem oil is a vegetable oil pressed from the fruits and seeds of the neem (Azadirachta indica), an evergreen tree which is endemic to the Indian subcontinent and has been introduced to many other areas in the tropics. It is the most important of the commercially available products of neem for organic farming and medicines.

Neem oil varies in color; it can be golden yellow, yellowish brown, reddish brown, dark brown, greenish brown, or bright red. It has a rather strong odor that is said to combine the odours of peanut and garlic. It is composed mainly of triglycerides and contains manytriterpenoid compounds, which are responsible for the bitter taste. It is hydrophobic in nature; in order to emulsify it in water for application purposes, it must be formulated with appropriate surfactants.

Azadirachtin is the most well known and studied triterpenoid in neem oil. The azadirachtin content of neem oil varies from 300ppm to over 2500ppm depending on the extraction technology and quality of the neem seeds crushed. Neem oil also contains steroids(campesterol, beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol).

 

Average composition of neem oil fatty acids
Common NameAcid NameComposition range
Omega-6Linoleic acid 6-16%
Omega-9Oleic acid25-54%
Palmitic acidHexadecanoic acid16-33%
Stearic acidOctadecanoic acid 9-24%
Omega-3Alpha-linolenic acid ?%
Palmitoleic acid9-Hexadecenoic acid ?%

 

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blog-karanjaKaranja – Karanja oil is popular in Ayurvedic medicine for the treatment of biliousness, eye ailments, leucoderma, worms, wounds, sores, scabies, eczema, psoriasis. itches, herpes viral infection, ulcers, and other skin diseases as well as for skin protection, as it is believed to enhance the UV absorbing properties of conventional sunscreens.

Karanja oil, like Neem oil, has been widely tested for its insecticidal, nematicidal, antiseptic, bactericidal, and cleansing properties. The oil has a high content of triglycerides.

According to Hartwell (1967–1971), the fruits and sprouts are used in folk remedies for abdominal tumors in India, the seeds for keloid tumors in Sri Lanka, and a powder derived from the plant for tumors in Vietnam. In sanskritic India, seeds were used for skin ailments. Today the oil is used as a liniment for rheumatism. Leaves are active against Micrococcus; their juice is used for colds, coughs, diarrhea, dyspepsia, flatulence, gonorrhea, and leprosy. Roots are used for cleaning gums, teeth, and ulcers. Bark is used internally for bleeding piles. Juices from the plant, as well as the oil, are antiseptic. It is said to be an excellent remedy for itch, herpes, and pityriasis versicolor. Powdered seeds are valued as a febrifuge, tonic and in bronchitis and whooping cough. Flowers are used for diabetes. Bark has been used for beriberi. Juice of the root is used for cleansing foul ulcers and closing fistulous sores. Young shoots have been recommended for rheumatism. Ayurvedic medicine described the root and bark as alexipharmic, anthelmintic, and useful in abdominal enlargement, ascites, biliousness, diseases of the eye, skin, and vagina, itch, piles, splenomegaly, tumors, ulcers, and wounds; the sprouts, considered alexeteric, anthelmintic, apertif, and stomachic, for inflammation, piles and skin diseases; the leaves, anthelmintic, digestive, and laxative, for inflammations, piles and wounds; the flowers for biliousness and diabetes; the fruit and seed for keratitis, piles, urinary discharges, and diseases of the brain, eye, head, and skin, the oil for biliousness, eye ailments, itch, leucoderma, rheumatism, skin diseases, worms, and wounds. Yunani use the ash to strengthen the teeth, the seed, carminative and depurative, for chest complaints, chronic fevers, earache, hydrocele, and lumbago; the oil, styptic and vermifuge, for fever, hepatalgia, leprosy, lumbago, piles, scabies, and ulcers.

Chemistry

Reported to contain alkaloids demethoxy-kanugin, gamatay, glabrin, glabrosaponin, kaempferol, kanjone, kanugin, karangin, neoglabrin, pinnatin, pongamol, pongapin, quercitin, saponin, -sitosterol, and tannin. Air-dry kernels have 19.0% moisture, 27.5% fatty oil, 17.4% protein, 6.6% starch, 7.3% crude fiber, and 2.4% ash. Fatty acid composition: palmitic, 3.7–7.9%, stearic 2.4–8.9, arachidic 2.2–4.7, behenic 4.2–5.3, lignoceric 1.1–3.5, oleic, 44.5–71.3, linoleic 10.8–18.3, and eicosenoic 9.5–12.4%. Destructive distillation of the wood yields, on a dry weight basis: charcoal 31.0%, pyroligneous acid 36.69, acid 4.3%, ester 3.4%, acetone 1.9%, methanol 1.1%, tar 9.0%, pitch and losses 4.4%, and gas 0.12 cu m/kg. Manurial values of leaves and twigs are respectively: nitrogen 1.16, 0.71; phosphorus (P2O5), 0.14, 0.11; potash (K2O), 0.49, 0.62; and lime (CaO), 1.54, 1.58%. Such manure reduces the incidence of Meloidogyne javanica.

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Avo Jel – Not Just a Vegan Alternative to Petroleum Jelly

Avojel - petroleum jellyKeys products are always 180º from ordinary.  They are extraordinary.  Our products always have more then one purpose and are always focused on solving problems and making our customers feel good. Yes, Avo Jel is a vegan alternative to petroleum jelly, but it is much much more.

When we recently introduced our Alternative Naturals™ brand, it was clear what each product does and what you can expect.  Because of a number of questions we have received about Avo Jel I think we guessed wrong.   Avo Jel is a jelly similar to petroleum jelly, but the similarity ends there.  Much more.  It is ‘On Purpose!’ and functional in every sense.

Because we use pharmaceutical grade avocado oil to make Avo Jel, you can expect all the benefits of any other Keys product that uses avocado oil.   We have published the features, benefits and advantages of our oils and extracts before in an article titled, Keys Prime Ingredients and Actions, but here is the information about avocado oil again.

blog-avoAvocado oil –  valued for its skin regenerative and moisturizing properties.

Avocado contains oils which are similar to human skin oils – sebum.  Avocado offers the skin moisture. Avocado oil has both Vitamin A and a natural form of Retinol.  The Vitamin A component helps promote a healthy skin microbiome to reduce skin blemishes (acne).  The retinol component is whole and not esthered like synthetic Vitamin A.  It provides natural skin lightening, uniformity of texture and color as well as acting as a natural exfoliant without the use of abrasives or salts.  Avocado oil is also helpful in treating dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, acne and dry skin conditions.  Keys uses both a virgin expeller pressed avocado oil and a filtered pharmaceutical grade in therapeutic proportions.

  • Proteins and Fatty Acids. Avocado oil contains a high amount of proteins and unsaturated fats, both of which are strong skin agents. Avocado oil contains omega-3 fatty acids like those found in fish oil
  • Sterolin. Avocado oil is high in a substance called sterolin, which case studies have shown softening of the skin and reduce the incidence of age spots
  • Antioxidants. Avocado oil is rich in antioxidants, making it useful for healing sun or chemical damaged skin. Antioxidants like vitamins A, D and E in avocado cause the skin to be suppler, and are thus particularly good for dry or aged skin.
  • Lecithin and Potassium. Avocado oil contains lecithin and potassium, which are all highly beneficial for the skin as well as the hair.

So when you think about Avo Jel, think beyond the fact that it is a vegan replacement for petroleum jelly.  You can expect all the value of the avocado oil in a jelly as well.

Only time will tell all the uses people find for Avo Jel.  Even this early since its introduction, we have a real sense that it will be a Keys Super-Star.

Click Here to see Avo Jel on the Keys Online Store.

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Alternative Naturals™ New Functional Line From Keys – REVOLUTIONARY

Alternative Naturals™

The Alternative Naturals™ challenge began over 6 years ago.  When Keys founder Bob Root learned of significant skin disorders afflicting the astronauts on the US International Space Station, he thought there must be a way.  Lotions and liquids just do not work well in zero-gravity.  The challenge was to create a jelly, but not from petroleum.  Starting with organic pure avocado oil, Bob began experimenting. The end result was a proprietary production process where the oil is altered to form a jelly similar in consistency to petrolatum, but with none of the impurities or petroleum.  This is a mechanical and not chemical process where the properties are altered to a higher viscosity and the jelly-like properties of petrolatum.  The next challenge was to use the same process to develop jellies from other oils and to be able to add natural ingredients that would make more functional natural vegan products for daily use.

Today marks the point where Keys is pleased to introduce 8 new products into a new functional line called Alternative Naturals™.  The line consists of 6 avocado oil based “Jels” and 2 spray botanical products.

alternative-naturals

These products using a process that jellies oil have No Petroleum, No Petrolatum, No Wax, No preservatives and No Water.  Like all Keys products, they are free of man-made chemicals, gluten-free and vegan.  The ingredients are the highest quality available and are in full strength proportions.  The line is designed to offer individuals wanting to be chemical-free an alternative to household brands using petrolatum.  The two spray based products are based on a Keys exclusively designed and extracted botanical extract with essential and special oils added to offer functionality to people.

Take a look!

You can click on the product you are interested in and it will take you to it on the Keys Store

Alternative Naturals

 

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urban

 

vapor-jel

 

zinc

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Our two spray products were developed from a extract we call Botanica™ and are designed to solve problems experienced by people and dogs.  The first is a skin aid product designed to mimic store brands using chemicals.  The second is a insect repellent that is designed to repel both flying and crawling insect for people and dogs that has many of the same ingredients as our RediCare, but with a botanical extract base that also softens the skin.

 

Take a look!

skin-aid

 

forcex

 

 

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Keys Celebrates Ten Years With News – OTC & New Director of Sales

Press Release:

Keys Plans OTC Natural Product Line

Taps Industry Veteran To Innovate Sales Effort.

 

Today, Wendy Steele, Keys CEO announced that the Keys brand of skin care products is planning to expand into the OTC (over the counter) segment with a line of natural remedies.  She also announced an expansion of Keys brand sales efforts to strengthen the move into OTC by tapping an industry veteran as their new Director of North American Sales.

wendy_glowWendy Steele offered, “Keys celebrates its 10 year anniversary by innovating new products and augmenting our sales efforts.  This is a back to the future moment for the Keys brand.  Keys products have always been functional.  Our products have solved skin problems for our customers and made them feel good since we began the Keys brand.  The natural products industry has become a strong part of everyone’s lives in the nutrition and supplements area.  It is time for natural skin care to become a part of this OTC market segment.  As industry innovators, we are taking the first major steps instigating a needed change.”

In the next few months, Keys will introduce new products that are designed to replace many familiar conventional brands with naturally derived extract based products.  These natural OTC innovations are designed to mimic the mainstream products with functional natural solutions.  Steele added, “We have ten “Back-Country Medicine” products in the pipeline based on our own natural extracts developed in cooperation with Applied Alchemy, Inc.  Each product combines extracts that we have developed in our laboratories with natural whole essential oil combinations to solve skin problems.  Examples are a chemical-free broad spectrum natural insect repellent and skin conditioner that will compete with Avon’s Skin So Soft and a first-aid spray that will be a natural alternative to Bactine.”

New Keys Sales Leadership

AnneWendy Steele also announced today that supplements industry sales veteran, Anne Otis will join the Keys brand as its new Director of North American Sales.  Otis is a 13 year sales professional joining Keys from the natural health industry.  Steele added, “We are thrilled to have Anne join us because she is both a practitioner and sales expert in the business of building a solution oriented sales channel.  Over the last ten years, I have watched the natural health industry grow and mature while the skin care portion has become a scent focused daily discounter commodity industry.  We want to grow and support retailers who are trusted advisors to their community and who compete with green washing big box and luxury natural market stores.”

Anne Otis is a 13 year sales veteran who has her masters degree in nutrition.  Anne offered, “There are natural markets, co-ops and natural practitioners that have stayed the course of offering their customers resources, knowledge, information and trusted personal advice.  Keys has always been a brand offering natural remedies and solutions.  As we innovate new products, it is my charter to innovate the sales channels.”

Wendy added, “Anne’s charter is to grow our sales systemically by focusing our resellers on the features, benefits and advantages of the Keys brand and the new OTC products coming soon.  We want to support resellers who are trusted advisors in their communities with products that the big box and glamour retailers cannot get.”

Orion Learning International Inc. was established in 1999 as a marketing and consulting firm focused primarily on the pharmaceutical and technology industries.  Clients include companies like Pfizer, Qualcomm and other advanced thinkers.  The Keys brand was a spinoff based on Wendy Steele’s successful defeat of Melanoma skin cancer.  The company has been innovating solution based functional natural skin care products since 2005 and is credited with numerous “firsts” in the industry.

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Glucosamine HCL + Chondroitin Sulfate Might Be As Effective AS NSAID’s For Dogs & Humans

Glucosamine HCL Information

bob_topazBelow is a blurb from the Natural Products Association released this morning about the use of Glucosamine HCL as a pain reliever.

We have known for quite a while that our customers using our KODA Proflexoil for their dogs have noted a reduction in pain and symptoms for joint problems.  Below are the results of a NIH study that confirms in trials that using this natural combination appears to be as effective as NSAID’s like Celebrex.  We have been against Vet’s prescribing NSAID’s, but have not had the research trials to be able to offer factual results.  Even though this study is for humans, the biological systems of dogs and humans are very similar because of their millennial symbiosis.  We are happy to read this study as it confirms our own observations.

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Chondroitin sulfate plus glucosamine works just as well to ease the symptoms of knee osteoarthritis as anti-inflammatory drugs, according to study results published in the journal Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis in the Western world, and the knee is the joint that gets hit with it most frequently. Osteoarthritis is expected to become the fourth leading cause of disability by 2020, write the study’s authors.

Because the non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) often used for arthritis can themselves cause serious gastrointestinal and cardiovascular effects, scientists have been hunting for alternatives for years.

Koda-logo-w-puppyThe recently completed trial, called the MOVES trial (Multicentre Osteoarthritis InterVEntion trial with Sysadoa) was conducted in Europe among a group of 606 patients with primary knee osteoarthritis and moderate to severe pain who were recruited from 42 centers in Spain, Germany, France and Poland. A multidisciplinary team of investigators including rheumatologists, orthopaedists and primary care physicians participated. In the double-blind, randomized, multicenter, parallel group trial, patients were given pharmaceutical grade chondroitin sulfate (1200 mg/day) and glucosamine hydrochloride (1500 mg/ day) or 200 mg of celecoxib (an anti-inflammatory drug) daily for six months.

Visit The Proflexoil Page Here

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Safe Cosmetics Campaign & Keys – Red Lists

safe cosmetics logoKeys was an early supporter of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics.  As a Champion Company for the Campaign, we have promoted the Dirty Dozen and later, Dirty 30 chemicals that you should avoid in your skin care and hair care products.   Safe Cosmetics has recently done a great job of updating their website and social media efforts.  What we are especially pleased with is that they have come up with a great visual reference of what chemicals to avoid based on product function.  These icons are easy to read and quickly give an idea of what to watch out for.  Below are the icons that you can click to enlarge.

#safecosmetics

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About Us – A Defining Moment

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Bob Root & Wendy Steele, Keys Founders

Keys was born from a need for natural skin care products the likes of which did not exist before we started. Our founder, Wendy Steele, survived Melanoma and her story of her road to recovery was littered with prescription products that almost worked.  The trauma showed her the clear vision need for products that really worked to solve skin problems.  Because they are natural, they also made her feel good with a new youthful appearance and the resulting contentment showed her the way in creating Keys In the simplest of messages, Keys is ancient remedies employing modern technologies for people with skin disorders, those that want to be chemical-free, people who want their family to have natural alternatives and for post cancer recovery survivors. We are:

Natural Beauty

Natural Skin Care

Natural Skin Therapies

Natural Hair Care

Natural Dog Care & Supplements

Keys Purpose and Direction 

We are not just a natural products company with scents of lavender and claims of what ingredients we do not have in our products.  We consider ourselves a natural medicine and therapy products company that happens to use natural ingredients.  We use functional ingredients in therapeutic proportions to design and build skin care, beauty, skin therapies and dog care products that do what they say they will do.  We never scrimp and we always back every product with a 100% satisfaction guaranty. I believe our Purpose and Direction statement says it all!”   Wendy Steele, Keys CEO
Keys Care -is the innovation and thought leader in the natural and chemical-free skin health industry.  Combining world class ingredients, herbs and botanicals in therapeutic proportions to solve skin problems and make people feel good. Keys brand of natural skin care, KPRO natural cosmetics and the KODA line of natural dog supplements and topical care products.
Keys designs, develops and manufactures natural healing therapies for people and pets.   The quality and quantity of our ingredients are what differentiate us.  As we say it, Pharmaceutical grade whole natural ingredients in therapeutic proportions.  We use ancient remedies, natural

Promo-covermedicines, whole natural ingredients, aromatherapy and aboriginal homeopathy combined with modern technology to provide safe and effective products for people and pets with skin disorders, sensitive skin, post cancer recovery or those wanting to avoid chemicals in their lives.  Our resellers are an extension of our core team and are experts and trusted advisers in their communities. At our baseline, we believe that all of our products must solve problems and make people feel good.  We also believe that natural and organic are not features, they are the choice we make assuring purity of purpose.

 

We are not just about making great products we are also concerned with the exaggerated focus of western medicine on treating symptoms.  Bob Root, Keys founder, designed every product we have made based on purpose.  At the same time he believes that 50% of all diagnosed skin disorders are caused by chemicals in our everyday lives.  He wrote a book titled, “Chemical-Free Skin Health®” to help people understand what is in most products and asking people to stop, challenge and choose healthy products that are safe for people and their families.

 

How It Began

Wendy Steele and Bob Root are the founders and inventors of Keys Soap.  They are both ex-corporate executives: Bob was a CEO of a Silicon Valley High Tech company and Wendy a VP at Coca-Cola. The soap and skin care connection?  Skin Cancer! Wendy Steele, Keys Founder, was diagnosed with Melanoma and beat the deadly disease.  She could not beat the terrible reactions she had from prescription and expensive skincare products.  Told she had eczema, psoriasis, acne, rosacea and dermatitis her condition deteriorated.  Doctors kept prescribing more junk, steroids and cortisone’s.

 

Wendy Steele

Wendy was struck with Skin Cancer multiple times.  She has beaten Melanoma and other forms of the devastating skin disease.  As an advocate of Skin Cancer prevention, and an Inner Circle Member of the Skin Cancer Foundation, Wendy has tried virtually every form of skin sun protection.  From exotic 100 SPF swimwear to SPF 30 clothing, and every form of sun block, she is an expert on taking skin protective measures to avoid sun damage.  From her personal experience, the more products she put on her body the more sensitive her skin became.  Her use of lotions, sunscreens and exotic clothing cost thousands of dollars annually.

 

The problem was that no matter what products she used, she did not feel free from itchy irritated skin that was exacerbated by that sticky feeling from lotions and sunscreens. Wendy recalls: “Bob and I talked for years about creating a rejuvenating soap for my ultra sensitive skin.  Like many products, Keys Soap was born out of necessity. When we lived in Southern California, I was diagnosed with Melanoma Skin Cancer.  After successful surgery to remove the cancer, I was using so much sunscreen that it started to block my pores and irritate my skin.  My skin was becoming more fragile even though I used the very best lotions money could buy.  I tried a natural liquid soap, but it was not quite right.  So, we decided to develop our own organic Castile-like body soap.  The initial cleansing results and skin relief I experienced using Island Rx finally set me free from experimenting with the myriad of products that had previously smothered my skin.”

 

Keys Factoids:

  • Safest Sunscreen in the World, EWG 2008, 2009, 2010 Sunscreen Report.
  • Most effective cosmetic sunscreen. Consumer Reports Magazine, July 2007

    Oscars Best Picks
  • Oscar Red Carpet Best Picks 2010, Kerry Maluof
  • Maria Shriver 2009, 2010 & 2011 California Women’s Conference Speakers Gift Bag Pick.
  • Luminos, LA Daily Candy Best Moisturizer
  • Natural medicines that actually heal skin disorders. Dr. Elaine Carter
  • Truly natural beauty products that feel and look great!, Vert Venice Beach CA
  • Natural is actually better and not a compromise. LA Daily Candy
  • Finally a natural shampoo that feels and looks better than salon brands. E K, Actress
  • Moisturizers that work in harmony with mineral makeups. K B, Makeup Artist
  • Keys honored as a “Champion Company” by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics
  • KPRO on the red carpet at the Oscars, Golden Globe, SAGs……
  • KODA dog products honored for innovation for dog supplements using human grade functional natural ingredients
  • KODA OmniShield honored by Men’s Health magazine for efficacy repelling insects naturally

 

Keys Product Categories:

  • Natural Anti-Aging Skin Care & Beauty
  • Natural Hair & Scalp Care
  • Healing Skin Therapies & Natural Topical Medicines
  • Natural Pet Care & Natural Topical Medicines
  • Pet Skin Therapies & Natural Insect Repellants

 

Made in America

A.J. Nelson, the author of “Give America a Chance,” wrote to us in the comments requesting that we add a paragraph about the fact that we are made in America.  He talks about patriotism in his book and we certainly feel patriotic about the USA and the fact that we are made in the USA.  A.J. is right that just having a Made in the US icon hidden in plain sight on the product labels is not enough.

 

Thinking it through, it is much more than just being made here that is important.  It is American ingenuity, design, creativity and innovation that we are most proud of in the creation of Keys brand.  Bob is a scientist at heart and wakes everyday to his scientific news services where he applies experimental techniques to the production of our products.  Just look at many of the articles and you will see innovations and uses of home grown American technologies.  For example, the industry standard for homogenization of lotions are high speed blenders with tiny blades that whip air into the lotions to make them smoother.  At Keys, we use techniques employing infrasonic sound to do the same thing.   Why, because we have no preservatives and air is the enemy of natural products.  Solar Rx, our moisturizer with sunscreen, uses a vapor deposition technique developed in Silicon Valley to make magnetic media to create our zinc oxide particles…

 

There is not one Keys product in the brand that is not touched somehow by American innovation.  Our team in the factory lives ingenuity to make our products faster and better without losing quality.  It is this form of ingenuity that has permitted us to not raise our prices once in ten years.  The list goes on, but the central theme is beyond patriotism, it is also why our products have integrity and continuous improvement.  Yes, we are patriots and even more important to us is the innovation we gain from American scientists and engineers.

 

Lastly, we are so impressed with American ingenuity that we have begun to partner with The Technology Center at the University of Wyoming School of Engineering to create a foundation called Back Country Medicine where we will issue grants and competitions to students and professors for innovative ingredients, designs and processes.  Giving back to America and gaining in the process.

 

What We Believe

 

There are two facets to skin health and wellness for pets and people.  It is a combination of what you use and what you avoid. Skin disorders rank at the top of the list for veterinarian and dermatologist visits.  In fact, we believe that over 50% of all skin disorders are misdiagnosed and are actually caused by chemicals in everyday products…many with the claim of natural, organic or botanical. Longevity and Wellness is connected.  The life expectancy in the United States for pets and people has been consistently dropping.  Why?  We believe the body burden from the dirty dozen chemicals in skin care and household products may be causing disorders, outbreaks and even contributing to elevated cancer rates. This is why we use the term Chemical-Free.  It means free of man-made chemicals.  We are committed to leading the way for other manufacturers to fully disclose product ingredients.  Keys created the Therapy Facts panel to help people to make healthier choices for their family and pets.

 

Ancient Remedies – Modern Technology – Green Science

 

Today, modern medicine treats symptoms and not the cause.  Their products therefore focus on the symptom and not the cause.  Aboriginal, eastern, holistic, herbal, naturopathy and ancient medicines treat the whole being and look for the cause.  In many cases it is imbalance that causes disease and disorders. We search the world for ancient remedies.  We use modern technology, green science and pharmaceutical grade ingredients.  We create products that work in harmony to: • Solve skin problems • Soothe skin allergies • Heal minor cuts, abrasions and burns • Act as natural insect repellents

 

Our affiliations included:

 

• University of Maryland School of Medicine • Los Alamos National Labs • National Institutes of Health • Ohio State University • Environmental Working Group • Compact signer for The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics

 

The Keys Difference –What We Use:

 

• Whole Natural ingredients to bring skin health back in balance

• An understanding of the cause and effect of various skin disorders, allergies and problems

• Simple ingredients in use for over 1000 years in other parts of the world

• Safe ingredients for pets and people

 

Pharmaceutical Grade & Quality for Efficacy-Results

 

Pharmaceutical Grade Ingredients is a term that defines the level of quality in the industry.  It also defines the efficacy of an ingredient

Therapeutic Proportions – Keys Therapy Facts panel state the level of the amount of ingredients that we use in our products

 

Why it Matters:

 

There is a direct relationship to the quality and grade ingredients in products and the results you get.  Many products tout Aloe Vera and Shea Butter as ingredients.  Pharma Grade ingredients are rated the best in quality, with the highest level of key actions and values associated with them.  When you read a label you should ask:  what grade ingredients and in what proportion?  For example, our Aloe has a polysaccharide level of 10.  Many Aloe’s we tested were not even Aloe.  Our Shea Butter tests to a fatty acid level of >2.5.  Many processed Shea’s are less than 0.8.  There is a difference in even the same named ingredient.

 

The Keys Difference – What We Avoid:

 

• Fragrance – they are known skin irritants for pets and people and many contain chemicals found on the Dirty Dozen list that you should avoid!

• Chemicals that are in 85%+ of skin care and household products

• The ‘Dirty Thirty’ list of chemicals

 

You Get What You Pay For!

 

• We develop chemical-free healing therapies that have a high degree of efficacy

• We don’t cut corners or use less expensive ingredients or market various scents or fragrances

• We use pharmaceutical grade ingredients in therapeutic proportions, so our products cost more.

 

Ironically, in most cases, they are one-third to half the price of prescription products Attaining healthy youthful skin is a lifetime journey.  In this quest, people use soaps, scrubs, gels, toners, moisturizers, lotions, creams, lighteners and the list goes on!  They also bathe their pets in shampoos for their own armotharapy instead of the pet’s well being.  Most of these products use chemicals that sensitize, irritate and weaken the skin.  For example, 95% of all liquid soaps and shampoos contain SLS (sodium lauryl or laureth sulfates) that increase skin permeability, and opens the door for other chemicals and irritants to penetrate deep into the skin.  Parabens, petrolatum, propylene glycol, cocamide DEA/lauramide DEA and triethanolamines are common ingredients in all kinds of soaps, shampoos, creams and lotions.  When on the skin or absorbed into the body, they can create susceptibility to allergic skin reactions, skin disorders and even worse are being linked to diseases! If you or your pets has irritated or affected skin, odds are good that it is caused by the shampoo, body and face soap you use, anti-bacterial hand products, or residue from your laundry detergent. The skin is our single biggest organ, and skin health is vitally important.  Most of the soaps people use on their skin is really degreasing detergent; in fact, most of the liquid products using the term “soap” are not soaps at all.  They are chemical detergents containing SLS that strip away oils and actually damage the skin.  That is why there is very little difference between most bath gels, dish washing liquid, shampoos and engine degreasers.

 

The Keys philosophy is to simplify skin care by carefully and naturally cleansing, restoring and protecting the most sensitive skin.  We consciously act on that philosophy to improve skin health.  We choose not to use chemicals in our products, on purpose! Keys Soap, Island Rx, Show Promise in Helping with Common Skin Disorders Keys Soap first announced the introduction of its new line of all-natural, chemical-free therapeutic liquid bath and hand soaps on March 29, 2005.  Keys liquid soaps are holistic, soothing, therapeutic soaps for people with sensitive, allergic or affected skin.  They contain only pure ingredients with no man-made chemicals or fragrances.  Our soaps do not contain skin irritants like SLS, parabens, propylene glycol or DEA. Since the release of our soap products, we have received considerable feedback from skin disorder sufferers offering qualitative results from their use of Island Rx on diagnosed common skin disorders like acne, eczema, psoriasis and rosacea.

 

We have a number of testimonials that would indicate the effectiveness of Island Rx.  “Although these are offered as testimonials in uncontrolled environments we believe they are early signs of the therapeutic properties of Island Rx,” said Bob Root, Keys Soap inventor.  “In this period of time, medical estheticians have told us of results with their patients where prior medical methods did not help their conditions.  We now believe that our products, including Island Rx, are tools in the growing movement of alternative chemical-free skin health”, continued Root.

 

What Keys Customers Value

 

People and pets with dry skin, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea and acneic conditions value the therapeutic results from using our clean products that contain no irritating or sensitizing chemicals.  Our customers enthusiastically tell us in their testimonials how our products make a difference in treating skin disorders, and irritation for themselves, their children and their pets–when nothing else has worked. After using our chemical-free therapeutic products, our customers tell us that the results they see and feel are remarkable and even life-changing!  We call this creating chemical-free skin health, on purpose, with our products and customers. Dermatologists use our Island Rx therapeutic soap and recommend it for sensitive skin for people with skin disorders that have not responded to other treatment.  We even have customers who enthusiastically recommended our soaps to their dermatologists! In 2009, we were told by movie and TV makeup artists that Keys products taught them that natural is no longer a compromise and that Island Rx Foaming Wash, Luminos, Solar Rx and Eye Butter have become a staple in their makeup routine calling them, “Clear Cosmetics!” Medical estheticians use and recommend Island Rx for sensitive, irritated and acneic skin conditions to avoid any further irritation or sensitization of the skin.  They love how it makes their skin feel and the results they see. Master certified groomers use and recommend MetaClean (formerly Muttineer) for how the therapeutic pet shampoo stops animals’ itchy skin and for how it conditions the animals’ coat and skin. Our customers are people who are interested in keeping their skin young looking and aging beautifully; people who are skin health conscious; and people who take serious sun precautions to avoid skin damage from solar radiation.  Our customers also care about the skin health of their pets and want to avoid applying pesticides and chemicals on their pets’ sensitive or allergic skin. Keys sees a link between common skin disorders and the many personal care products containing SLS While developing Keys soaps, Bob Root authored an opinion whitepaper that raises the suspicion that some diagnosed common skin disorders are really a reaction for some people to sodium laureth sulfate and other chemicals found in personal care and skin care products.

 

Root points out that in a number of cases where people had been diagnosed with skin disorders by physicians, their disorders went away when people stopped using SLS products and started using Keys Soap.  Included is the story of a woman diagnosed with psoriasis whose involuntary scratching at night led to bloodied bed sheets and a seven-month old diagnosed with eczema who was covered from head to toe with scales…except where his disposable diapers covered.  All went away in a matter of days after discontinuing SLS based laundry detergent and bath gels.

 

Wendy Steele, the cause of the Keys Soap invention offered, “When Bob first developed Island Rx for me, most of the prescription gels and cleansers that I was told to use contained SLS.  An article I read suggested that SLS maybe a culprit and I stopped using everything with SLS in it.  I was utterly amazed at how many things in my life contained SLS or one of its family of products.  My shampoo, my bath gel, facial cleanser, all my laundry products and even my toothpaste all contained SLS.  During this time, I was diagnosed with minor acne, minor eczema, minor psoriasis.  I got tired of hearing the word minor—it was pretty major to me.  I now believe that it was all SLS related.”

 

Root added; “I am not sure if SLS itself is the cause of the irritation or the fact that it purportedly increases the permeability of the skin along with absorption by the skin of chemicals by a factor of 10 times that is the cause of the skin mimicking common skin disorders.  What I know for sure is that our small sample of Island Rx users have seen a resulting change in a matter of a few days.”

 

The Technology behind Keys Islandceutical™ personal care products is a form of Quantum Science

 

Keys Islandceutical products merge holistics with herbal therapy and science to provide clean, chemical-free skin health, aromatherapy and a lift to the spirit.  Our products are designed with ingredients to gently clean, restore and protect using advanced technologies that are safe and effective.  Working with national labs and universities, we look for state of the art and “skip generation” technologies as a continuing learning and development model.

 

Essential Oils – We use the highest pharmaceutical grade ingredients that are known for their healing effect on the skin for burns, dry skin and skin afflictions.

 

Herbal Therapy Naturopathy – Our ingredients target skin problems at the cellular level.  They are natural healing ingredients used by holistic dermatologists and estheticians.

 

Chemical-Free – Our ingredients are truly natural.  Clean, chemical-free and 100% vegan, with no artificial color or fragrances, our products are all hand crafted to contribute to therapeutic skin health.

 

We have sought out aboriginal healers, dermatologists, estheticians and homeopathic practitioners to find out what they use to rejuvenate and protect the skin.  Besides moisture, they prescribe natural oils and herbs to deep clean and open the pores to receive healing oxygen.  Our experience with physicians educated at Scripps Institute and Johns Hopkins in our 10 year design quest has given us a broad reaching knowledge of skin conditions and the required treatments.  These guides helped us to find those ingredients that offer the greatest benefits to the skin. Our processes are as unique as our ingredients.  The old adage that oil and water do not mix is no longer true because of the science developed by keys.  Manufacturing techniques that include ultrasonics and infrasonics help blend theminimal number of ingredients to smooth and consistent lotions and soaps.  The industry average for a skin care product is 38 ingredients/chemicals.  At Keys, we average 8 whole ingredients that are simple and safe.  This is why Keys natural products continue to rate the safest and most effective based on the  Skin Deep report that ranks product safety.

 

Keys Islandceutical™ introduced new products at the Natural Products Expo East Show – the new line adds a therapeutic  lotion, healing serum and therapeutic chemical-free sunblock Keys announces the release of three new products to the only skin care line that is both chemical-free and therapeutic to clean, restore and protect for real skin health. Like the Keys soaps released in April 2005, our products contain only pure natural ingredients, no man-made chemicals or fragrances, and absolutely no Sodium Laureth Sulfate!  The complete Keys line enables total skin care including cleaning the skin, restoring damaged or affected skin, and protecting the skin from solar radiation effects. Keys Soap exhibited at the Natural Product Expo East trade show September 16-18, 2005 at the Washington DC Convention Center.  An international audience of trend spotters, retailers, industry leaders, and media will gather at the Washington D.C. Convention Center to interact with more than 1,100 exhibitors of natural and organic finished products and ingredients this Sept. 15-18, 2005 at the 20th anniversary of Natural Products Expo East/Organic Products Expo-BioFach America.  The tradeshow will pinpoint industry trends and offer unmatched opportunities to sample and learn about the finest natural and organic products from around the world. More than 20,000 industry members attended Natural Products Expo East in 2004.

 

Keys® Introduces Therapy Facts™ Product Labeling

 

Therapy FactsTM Panel added to product label fully discloses all ingredients and percentages of active ingredients and our New Keys Logo Affirms Medicinal Differentiation of Products Here is the press release that literally changed how the industry looks aqt ingredients and disclosure.  This marked the beginning of a trend and perhaps even a law regarding full-disclosre of ingredients for all skin care products. Annapolis, MD: – March 29, 2007 –  Keys Care CEO, Wendy Steele,  revealed today at a press conference Keys new logo and Therapy FactsTM product labeling. The new Keys logo is a stylized white cross on a circular red field that resembles an Internet icon.  This new logo symbolizes the merging of high tech manufacturing and the medicinal properties. It also clearly differentiates Keys products from chemical based fragranced products.

 

Solar Rx Therapy Facts Panel

Keys also add a Therapy FactsTM Panel to every label that identifies the ingredients, their purpose and the percentages of active healing ingredients.  The panel also indicates Keys use of pharmaceutical grade ingredients in therapeutic proportions versus the industry standard operating procedure of listing ingredients that are in minuscule levels only for the purpose of label content. Wendy Steele, Keys CEO, elaborated, “I developed my first pet care product Muttineer because of a severe life threatening reaction my Bichon had after being shampooed at a groomer.  Analyzing the shampoo, we found a sodium laureth sulfate (SLS) levels exceeding 30%; the National Institutes of Health comment that SLS levels greater than 18% can kill a small animal.  As we developed more products, our customers asked for more disclosure of ingredients in plain English, the levels and in a way that they could quickly make buying decisions.

 

As we thought it through, it was obvious that people are used to the Nutrition Facts (USDA) label required on all food products.  So, we adopted the format and modified it to make sense for end users of our products, retailers and other manufacturers.”

 

The Keys Therapy FactsTM panel is on all their new products labels and will eventually be on their entire line of personal and pet care products.  The panel identifies key decision points for buyers.  Here is a list of the core sections of the panel.

 

•   Standardized design and look

•   Organic content of the product

•   Affirmation of “100% Natural, Vegan and Biodegradable” contents

•   Affirmation of Pharmaceutical Grade Ingredients in Therapeutic Proportions

•   List of ingredient, their English name, the vitamins contained in the ingredient or their actions •   The actual percentages of active ingredients •   The Environmental Working Group ranking of the products safety

•   A product purpose statement

•   Instructions for use

•   No Animal Testing affirmation

•   Manufacturing country (USA)

•   Contact information

 

Wendy Steele, Keys Founder continued, “This Therapy FactsTM panel just speaks for itself.  It is a response to numerous customer inquiries.  We encourage other manufacturers to follow suit and fully disclose their ingredients and levels.  We are discussing licensing of our Therapy FactsTM panel to other manufacturers and to those that we will be private labeling all natural chemical-free skin care products for them.  Our purpose is full disclosure of all ingredients and an assurance from licensees that they will provide an honest description to their customers through this panel on their products.  In turn, consumers and dealers will have a clear understanding of a products purpose and actions.”

 

Keys Soap Technology Background

 

Keys Soaps solve skin problems, stimulate the senses, and create positive emotions.  Islandceutical™ is our term that assures people of these three criteria. Bob Root, a former Silicon Valley CEO, and Wendy Steele, a former Coca-Cola executive, founded Keys Soap.  Bob invented the soaps to help Wendy, the love of his life, a melanoma survivor.  Her suffering and a desire to maintain her active, outdoor lifestyle drove him to give back her quality of life. Wendy said, “The Keys Soap story isn’t about starting a business, or being an entrepreneur.  It is about enjoying life with healthy skin.  I am determined to live an active, healthy outdoor lifestyle after experiencing melanoma.” “It was not my technology background that inspired the formulation of my soaps, it was my study as a chef that guided me” said Bob. “Like creating a great culinary masterpiece, the ingredients have to work together, be of the highest quality, and must be skillfully added in the proper order.  More importantly, the meal must have a positive intention for the person savoring it.  This is the way of Keys!”

 

Aromatherapy Benefits of Keys Soaps

 

All Keys Soaps are a form of aromatherapy.  We have mapped the essential oils (EO) we use to provide a lift to the spirit and senses.  Aromatherapy has proven to affect the mind and the moods of people.  This is why we have chosen the spirit lifting citrus blends combined with natural EO herbal extracts as a side purpose for our soaps.  Keys hand crafts our products to lift the spirit as well as provide therapeutic benefits to the skin.

 

KODA Products for Dogs

 

jasper-table_2KODA is the dog therapy product line established by Keys.  Products include chemical-free natural supplements and topical therapies for dogs.  We use ancient remedies and modern technology to make natural products that makes dogs feel good and solve both internal and skin problems.  We use pharmaceutical grade ingredients in therapeutic proportions to solve problems that account for the top 10 reasons for vet visits.  KODA is a combination of wellness products and natural solutions.
Koda is Lakota Sioux for “Friend.”  The word perfectly describe the intention for our products and their recipients.  Today’s dogs are exposed to all sorts of environmental and chemical exposures that are and will shorten their lives.  After an experience with our 14 month old pup, Jasper,  that forced him to have to take strong antibiotics and Prednisone,  we  realized that the Veterinarians were ill equip to balance his prescriptions with a wellness program.  Determined, we set out to find the finest ingredients the same way that we developed our custom regime for Jasper.  You can read the entire KODA story Here

 

Keys Care, Keys Soap et al are wholly  owned brands of Orion Leaning International, Inc., a Wyoming Corporation.  Keys®, KODA®, Solar Rx®, Luminos®, Chemical-Free Skin Health®, The Technology of People® ,Therapy Facts, Islandceutical®, and Urban Shield®  are US Patent and Trademark Office registered trademarks.

Clean Green Cafe is a blog news center of Orion Learning International, Inc.  It is affiliated with both the Keys® an KODA® brands as their news reporting arm.

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New! KPRO Silkin Natural Shampoo & Conditioner – Better Than Conventional and Salon Brands

silkinFinally, a natural shampoo that will clean and shine as well as conventional and salon brands, but without the junk.

Seven years in development, Silkin is the answer.  We originally designed it  for those with thick, long and big hair.  The great news is that is is even better for people with short, silky, straight and thin hair.  Men especially noted that they love the quick lather and ended up using it as a shave soap as well.  Color and perm safe, it is truly a revolution in hair care.

Do not take our word for it.  Click Here to order a $0.49 sachet good for a couple of washings or next time you order, you will get a sample of Silkin free automatically.

Silkin is an extension of our KPRO line.  6 months of testing has received many accalades from hair stylists, designers and everyday users looking for a natural alternative to conventional shampoos.

Silkin contains the same OptiFX particles that are in KPRO tinted products.  Silkin opens the hair cuticle to clean and the OtiFX particles cling to the cuticle to offer a color enhancer, special shine and shimmer.

Silkin comes in a 16 ounce (472ml) pump bottle and retails for $24.95.   It is a very concentrated shampoo that last much longer than expected.  Click Here to buy Silkin

Silkin is 100% All-Natural Moisturizing Professional Shampoo for All Hair Types and Treated Hair.  This KPRO Shampoo is designed to replace conventional shampoos and conditioners with professional results.

• Deep Cleaning Shampoo

• Color & Treated Safe

• Hydrating & Moisturizing

• Rich Lather for Short to Big Hair

• Low Scent – No Fragrance

• Color Enhancing Technology

• Chemical-Free

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Watch this two-minute video to learn more.

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Foot Calluses? Go Gluten-Free!

bob_topazBy Bob Root

Keys Scientist and Founder

Soft feet will last you for a lifetime preserving your nerve sensitivity, stability and balance as you go older.  Calluses, on the other hand, will decrease you ability to feel as you walk, your inability to stand for longer periods and walk not balanced.  Not too mention how those calluses scratch and tear up those ebed sheets.

Take off your shoes and socks.  Look at your feet.  Calluses?  Probably gluten in your diet.

We have known for a long time that many common typical disorders have probable links to gluten.  Dark circles under the eyes, gum and periodontal issues and, yes, calluses have been linked to all that bread, pasta and wheat based products some intake.  In fact, Wendy, my wife and partner, had all three.  Going on a Paleo diet (gluten-free) reversed all of these maladies for her and she lost twenty pounds in the first three weeks as a bonus.  Wendy’s mom was a baker at home.  The kids came home from school to fresh baked cakes, cookies and all sorts of gluten intensive goodies.  Maybe not so good, her mom had foot callus problems all her life.  Could it have been the gluten?  Again, to repeat, Wendy’s dark circles, gum problems and her calluses started to disappear in two weeks and were gone in almost 30 days when she went gluten-free. Continue reading Foot Calluses? Go Gluten-Free!

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Kyle to Keys! My Hair is Growing!

wendy_glowBy Wendy Steele, Keys CEO & Founder Keys

Keys Customer Service forwarded an urgent email to me last week.  It made reference to a note included on an order from a Keys customer named Kyle.  The note on his order read as following:

“I LOVE THESE PRODUCTS! I have had Alopecia for 10 years and these products are growing my hair back!  Whoever is reading this PLEASE, I urge you to relay this information to the company founders and owners and whoever oversees product development.  I highly recommend that these products be marketed toward people like myself who have Alopecia of any kind.  I have full body hair loss and the fantastic products at Keys Soap aren’t just growing little amounts of hair..It’s coming back over my entire body.  The NAAF needs to be made aware of my results and shown by example how NATURAL skincare and lifestyle overall are the superb choice over pharmaceutical drugs.  THANK YOU KEYS, God Bless! :)”

Wow, this was an inspirational note to receive! We love to hear from our customers.  Continue reading Kyle to Keys! My Hair is Growing!

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It’s Clear – Again. Clear Airless Containers Return

airless_clearLast year in a need to get a renewed supply of airless containers we were presented with the option of going all opaque white or having no containers.  Almost immediately our loyal customers raised up in unison that they wanted the clear translucent containers back so that they could see how much remained.  At the time, we had no options and immediately we polled our supplier to give us the option to return to a clear translucent base tube.  They listened and now all Keys airless products have a white pump with a clear base.

We have been shipping the clear base airless containers for the last month, but not all products were converted over.  Now, we are happy to say that all the airless products are shipping in the clear base container.

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EWG 2014 Sunscreen Report – Keys Solar Rx in Top List

The 2014 EWG Sunscreen report was released and Keys Solar Rx was given a Excellent rating and was chosen as a Top Product in the moisturizer with sun protection category.   Click Here to jump to the EWG listing for Solar Rx.

The EWG ranking system is based on safety with most of the top brands rating a 2 on a scale of 0 to 10 (o = safest)  Keys Solar Rx was given a ranking of 1.

Solar Rx is cosmetically transparent and yet provides a UVA and UVB equivalent to conventional sunscreen rated at SPF 30+.  Solar Rx is not a go to beach or sport sunscreen because the lotion is a functional therapy water soluble medium designed to act as a moisturizer for everyday use.

Wendy Steele, Keys CEO, said, “Since the day we introduced Keys Solar Rx, it has received the highest ranking from the EWG and Consumer Reports magazine.  Safety and efficacy are the important facets about these two rating systems.  We applaud the EWG for their efforts and for the details as well as ease of use of the 2014 report.”

Below is the excerpt from the report.

Keys Care Solar Rx Moisturizer, SPF 30+

Keys by Orion Learning International, Inc.

Continue reading EWG 2014 Sunscreen Report – Keys Solar Rx in Top List

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Tortuga Turns 100 Years Old.

BW_wideby Bob Root, Keys CTO

The predecessor to Tortuga lotion was born in my grandmothers kitchen 100 years ago.   I grew up with this ancient remedy as a cure-all that saved me from cuts, bruises, dog bites, scrapes and even being jilted by a girlfriend or two.

My grandmother was an herbalist, naturopath and alchemist before Adele Davis was born.  I remember her picking weeds (herbs) and making potions, concoctions, soups, salves and rubs.  She was always experimenting with something that she would try on herself and us kids.

I am writing this article to explain the origin of Tortuga.  Tortuga has always been one of our most popular products.  Recently we have seen a real surge in interest.  This has come mainly through social networks of people trying to find solutions to skin disorders that western medicine have not been able to solve.  Many people have written to us telling of remarkable turn-arounds in their conditions.  For me, the credit goes to my grandmother’s bubbling caldrons.  I must pay homage to her for what she taught me.

Continue reading Tortuga Turns 100 Years Old.

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Keys Prime Ingredients and Actions

bob_topaz

By Bob Root,  Keys Founder & CTO

One of our friends, Beatriz, suggested that we write something about our important ingredients and the actions. I actually had something we wrote for a reseller seminar series last year, so I dusted it off for this article.

It is a good idea with some caveats.

I think you know as a Keys follower that the quality and quantity of an ingredient is of the utmost importance to us.  Making sure an ingredient is the best money can buy and using enough in a formulation to be effective is of equal importance.  What you might not understand it that there are two equally important components.  That is how ingredients interact in a formulation and how the formula is made or the process of combining the ingredients.

In food, it is easy to understand that the ingredients are as important as the process Continue reading Keys Prime Ingredients and Actions

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FDA Taking Closer Look at ‘Antibacterial’ Soap

Over the years we have published a number of articles about antibacterial products containing Triclosan and parabens.  We encourage you to search Clean Green Cafe to read some of these articles and the entire chapter in Bob Root’s book, Chemical-Free Skin Health.  To recap, antibacterial can mean a bactericide like parabens and triclosan, or reducing bacteria levels without killing good bacteria with the bad.  The National Institutes of Health Human Microbiome Project points out that we have ten times more bacteria on our skin than skin cells.  Most good, these bacteria live symbiotically with our skin to protect us from bad bacteria like Staph and eColi.  The contention has been and still remains that killing all bacteria on our skin leads to the formation of “super-bugs.”  So using soaps like Keys Galleyon reduce bacterial levels because they contain spearmint, are Castile like soap and have slightly higher alkalinity that is

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Your Antibacterial Soap Could Be Harming You

Bob Root, Keys Chief Scientist and Founder

Update:  Soap & Water just as effective in removing bacteria!

I am pleased that the FDA has stepped in to force some requirements on antibacterial products.  As you read on, there are some very important points.  In the world of antibacterial products, there is no distinguishing between bacteriacides and bacteria reduction.  Triclosan is very similar to parabens found in most products.  The claim is that they are bacteriacides that kill 99% of all bacteria….good and bad.  As I have pointed out in other articles, we have as many as ten times more bacteria on our skin as we do skin cells.  Most of these are good bacteria that help prevent invasion by the bad bacteria like Staph and eColi.  Bacteriacides like parabens and Triclosan claim to kill bad bacteria, but also kill the good which the FDA now reveals might help form “super-bugs.”

Keys Galleyon is antibacterial in the sense that it falls into the bacteria reduction class of products because of the Lakota spearmint, Castile-like soap and that it is slightly alkaline.  I like to refer to this as a skin rejevenation process more than an antibacterial action.  The truth is that we have long known that a good wash with soap and water and a brisk warming drying will help to further reduce, but not kill the good bacteria.  Galleyon enhances the effect without harming the good bacteria on our skin.

The FDA is now echoing something that we have talked about for years and yesterday’s announcement further brings to light the need for strict controls on chemicals that come in contact with our skin.

So please read the announcement below and read the FDA announcement.  More information always gives us more choices that we can make.

FDA to Crack Down on Manufacturer Antibacterial Claims

Continue reading Your Antibacterial Soap Could Be Harming You

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The Jar Is Back – Keys Eye Butter

15ml

Eye Butter 15ml Jar & Airless Pump

Back by popular demand, Keys Eye Butter is now available in Jars again.   This Eye Butter is also smoother and richer with no change in formula.  The process has been improved to yield a rich and very smooth cream eye moisturizer.  And yes, it is available in either the jar version or the airless travel pump version.  Both are the same price and the same product in a different container.  Your choice at $19.95 for either container.

Eye Butter Eye Cream
Eye Butter Eye Cream
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Keys RediCare – Featured in Men’s Journal Magazine

menJBest Chemical-Free Insect Repellents

RediCare-cropped

Few canned products inflame as much passion and confusion as insect repellents. On the pro-chemical side are those who claim that plant-based sprays and other alternatives simply don’t work at all, and so leave users exposed to pathogen-hosting insects carrying anything from West Nile to the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. But proponents of chemical-free repellents cite the possible toxicity of Deet to the human brain, and claim their all-natural alternatives work plenty well. (We’ll add that we’ve had a pair of sunglasses get lightly melted by errant Deet spray, which left us questioning whether we ought to be applying it to our skin on a regular basis.)

The truth, as often is the case, falls somewhere in the middle. So according to Dr. Mustapha Debboun, editor of ‘Prevention of Bug Bites, Stings and Disease,’ both types of products have their place. “The way to think about it is that chemicals are better for longer hours in the deep woods,” Debboun says, “while all-natural ingredients are fine for the backyard, beach, and other places where you won’t be out for extended periods.” So think Deet or picaridin for that jungle trek to Southeast Asia you’ve been planning, but something all-natural for day hikes and picnics closer to home.

Still, in a surprising twist (and what will be a humbling disappointment for chemical warfare proponents), it turns out that pound-for-pound, all natural options are actually the better performer. “Natural insect repellents generally repel a larger and wider range of crawling and flying insects [than chemicals] because of the diverse grouping of ingredients they contain,” says Bob Root, author of ‘Chemical Free Skin Health.’ Dr. Debboun concurs: “Lemon eucalyptus is just as good an ingredient as chemicals like Deet and picaridin.” Continue reading Keys RediCare – Featured in Men’s Journal Magazine

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Bob Root on the Dr. Amy Myers Show

dramymyersPromo-coverLong time friend and adviser, Dr. Amy Myers recently interviewed Bob Root, Keys Technologist, about his book Chemical-Free Skin Health.  Amy is a leading practitioner and medical doctor specializing in Functional Medicine in Austin Texas.

Keys has been a part of the Functional Medicine movement for many years.  Whole functional ingredients makeup the Keys line and Amy asked Bob some interesting questions.  Listen in by clicking the speaker Icon below.

Amy’s website is available by Clicking Here

 

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Click to listen
 
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5-Minute Skin Clinic at the Airport

simply_wendy_banner

by Wendy Steele
Keys CEO

Secrets to flying simply with stunning results!

 The 2:30 am wake-up call was all my fault. I had booked a 3,000 mile trip from the East Coast to get back West and it was the first flight out at 6am Eastern! I knew that I had better get a good night’s rest before flight day. I concentrated most of my prep efforts the night before so that I would have the fewest amount of moving pieces on the morning of the flight. So the night before I packed the suitcase,laid out the clothes and shoes ready to slip into. Ticket and rental car keys were at the ready.

The morning of my flight- to insure I was on my way to the airport at 3:15 am, I really needed to be awake at 2:30am.  After 2 wake up calls, I followed with are freshing shower, hot libation, and a phenomenally simple skin treatment.

g5At 4:30 am I breezed through the rental car return and airport security.I felt awake and had time to relax before boarding.  After a fairly short first leg flight, it was just after 7:30 am Central time when I arrived at my connecting airport in Chicago. I deplaned and walked to my new departure gate B-5 with ticket in hand.  I was just about to inquire with the gate agent when I was truly surprised by a 30-something woman who whisked up to me and said;  “I am sorry, I just have to interrupt you to ask you—how do you get skin that looks like that?”

The gate agent looked up and smiled at me as if to say; “I’m all ears.” Continue reading 5-Minute Skin Clinic at the Airport

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Cooking for your dog with Koda OmegaLife

stir-fryCooking with OmegaLife

By Bob Root

Koda OmegaLife is a product I developed as a vegan replacement for fish oil for dogs.  The reason we developed OmegaLife was to provide Omega 3, 6 & 9’s without the vitamin A that i found in fish oil.  Vitamin A can be toxic to humans and dogs if in too high a level.

I recently had a question escalated to me by our customer service team.  It was, “Can I cook my dogs food using OmegaLife Oil?”  The simple answer is, “Of Coarse!”

There are a number of our customers that feed their dogs using a “Raw” diet while others cook or partially cook the dogs food.  If your recipe has you slow cooking or even stir-frying your dogs meat and vegetables, use Omegalife instead of oil.  Estimate how many meals you are preparing times your dogs weight divided by 10 to determine how may squirts of oil you use.  (For example, if you are cooking 1o meals and your dog weighs 10 pounds, it would be 10 squirts of OmegaLife in the food).  If you are preparing the food as a “Raw” diet, it is okay to also squirt the OmegaLife into the food based on the above formula.

Remember in all cases, it is one squirt for each ten pounds times the estimated number of meals.

Just remember that you do not want to overheat the OmegaLife.  Put the amount in a pan, turn on the heat and add the food.

Personally, I have been cooking for Jasper since the day he joined our family.  The reason is that, “I know what is in his food when I make it.”  The irony is that it is less expensive as well.

Any questions?  Send me a comment and I will respond.

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Keys Labels, Ingredients and Information

We have recently updated our product labels to a new look and providing some new information.  One of our customers suggested that we post all the labels in one place so that people can compare the products and look at the ingredients of all product easily.

Below are all of our new labels for both the Keys and Koda Dog products.  You can click on each thumbnail to enlarge them.  Click the image again to get the full size image.  You can then right-clicking them to “Save As” to your computer. Continue reading Keys Labels, Ingredients and Information

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Itchy Dog? Ditch the Perfume

Stop that Itch- Lose the Perfume!

 by Wendy Steele, Keys CEO

How attentive are you when your dog is in distress?

  • Do you hear the incessant scratch, scratch, scratch during the day or at night before bed?
  • Do you visually examine your dog and investigate the area where the itching and scratching is centered before there is redness, irritation or raw sore patches?
  • Have you had the nagging feeling, wondering why your dog is itching and scratching after a bath or grooming session?

Being attentive to your dog’s skin health is relatively simple, you just need to pay attention to all of the clues your dog is already giving you!   Keep an eye on excessive itching and scratching, listen for and actively watch for any patterns (when and where itching occurs) and begin investigating the possible sources of the problem.

As for that nagging feeling about the itching and scratching after your dog’s bath or after a grooming session?   The most likely reason your dog is scratching and itching is directly related to the perfumes, artificial fragrance and harsh ingredients in dog shampoos! Continue reading Itchy Dog? Ditch the Perfume

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About Us, The Stories Behind The Keys Story

Natural Solutions for Beauty, Aging and Skin Problems

Keys Snapshot: What We Do

Keys designs, developed and manufactured whole natural skincare and skin therapies that solve problems and make people feel good. Born from Wendy Steele’s brush with Melanoma, Bob Root used first principle physics to develop functional natural medicines using ancient remedies merged with modern pure science and technology. The therapeutic proportions with world class grade ingredients created a line of products that work to solve problems and because they are natural, are simple, reassuring and make people feel good about the company and products.

The line consists of:
• Natural Skincare
• Natural Auyervedic Skin Therapies
• Alternative Natural Petroleum Jelly Replacements
• KPRO Hollywood Makeup Artist Inspired Foundation & Solutions
• PurPlay – Functional Personal Lubricants
• KODA – Topical and Functional Supplements for Dogs

Keys has some of the top products listed on the EWG Skin Deep database. For the last 10 years, Solar Rx has ranked as one of the top moisturizer sunscreens on the annual EWG Sunscreen Report.

Solar Rx was rated #1 by Consumer Reports Magazine for safety and efficacy.

The Keys products are handcrafted in Oregon by highly skilled artisans. All products are functional by design. They are aboriginal medicines by nature. University and research affiliations make the company as science-based as they are focused on the integral wellness of their followers.

Perhaps our most secret ingredient is our belief in our customers and what we have learned from them.

Keys Snapshot: Keys Story

What happens when a brainiac boyfriend discovers his smoking hot girlfriend has Melanoma.  He fixes the problems! This begins the Keys Story, Keys Natural Skincare and the effort to naturally end skin disorders!

Keys StoryWendy Steele, Keys CEO and Founder, fondly says that Keys is all her fault. The reality is that she survived deadly Melanoma but could not beat the chemicals in prescription and skincare products that left her skin a train-wreck. Wendy experienced just about every type of skin disorder imaginable and all we traced back to the Dirty Dozen chemicals in about 98% of the skin care and prescription products available OTC and from doctors.

Wendy’s boyfriend, Bob Root, a former Silicon Valley CEO/Engineer undertook the project to develop products to help Wendy. He gathered information from Harvard MD’s turned naturopaths to aboriginal healers. He realized that there was a pattern and scheme to skin health. It was to be Chemical-Free. Thus the Keys tagline of Chemical-Free Skin Health®.

Bob’s products worked and worked quickly for Wendy.   Friends with similar disorders, their family members with something as simple as dry skin, through acne and skin cancer suffers found relief using Bob’s products that he gifted them. Creating the Keys line was not a decision, it was market demand that brought out the initial four products and stunned the burgeoning natural products industry. Why they all still had some chemicals and Bob’s did not!

Keys Snapshot: Keys Probiome® Products

Keys products solve skin problems and make people feel good. Skin care, skin therapies and anti-aging products come from whole natural ingredients known for their efficacy and safe performance. From the slightest itch or fine line to post-cancer skin disorders, each Keys product is a solution to a problem. Pure, clean, safe and effective, Keys facilitates skin health without chemicals. All of the products are Probiome® meaning they promote healthy skin by nurturing our skin’s natural microbiome. Our skin’s community.

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Performance:

Functionality is paramount at Keys. Coming from Silicon Valley to Bob, products have to do something. Great if they make people feel good, but in his mind, they have to solve problems. He fixed his girlfriend’s problems and the precursor for anything Keys makes is that it has to solve problems people are experiencing without using any chemicals.

So, in a snapshot, here is what you can expect from everything Keys makes:

  • All products solve problems and make people (and their pets) feel good
  • All products are free of human-made chemicals. Ergo Chemical-Free
  • All products use the highest quality whole natural ingredients
  • All products have the highest proportion of functional components with no scrimping or compromises
  • All products are priced reasonably well below chemical-laden pharmaceuticals because of the business systems Keys employs. They were the first 100% cloud-based company in the natural products industry.
  • All products are whole natural ingredients
  • All products are Vegan
  • All products are Gluten-Free
  • All products are Soy-Free
  • All products are Keto (carb-free, sugar-free_
  • All products are Paleo
  • All ingredients are non-GMO
  • All products use organic or wild-crafted ingredients

Keys StoryBob in his top-selling book, Chemical-Free Skin Health®, points out that it was a lot of trial and error to develop those first four products for Wendy. My incentive was that Wendy was in trouble because of western medicine and I was determined to figure out how to solve her problems naturally. The other 45+ products in the Keys line were all inspired by skin disorders related to him by loyal customers that believe in him. He does not take that lightly!

You can read more of the story in detail below. Now Bob & Wendy are married and still developing products, giving speeches, writing books and listening to what customers have to say. Funny, Bob always refers to Wendy as his smoking hot girlfriend and her as her brainiac boyfriend. 20 years of solving problems and making people feel good together with chemical-free skin health products.

Read on for More of the History


Circa 1996 to Now!

Wendy Steele, Keys CEO.  We are not just another natural products company.  We feel and act as natural medicine and therapy products company that uses whole natural ingredients.  I believe our Purpose and Direction statement says it all!”   Why

“We believe that over 50% of all skin disorders in people and pets are misdiagnosed and are caused by chemicals in everyday products and the environment!

We offer you this backgrounder as insight into our reason for being, purpose, and direction.  

Keys Care designs, develops and manufactures natural healing therapies for people and pets.   The quality and quantity of our ingredients are what differentiate us.  We use pharmaceutical grade whole ingredients in therapeutic proportions.  We use ancient remedies, natural medicines, whole natural ingredients, aromatherapy and aboriginal homeopathy combined with modern technology to provide safe and effective products for people and pets with skin disorders, sensitive skin, post cancer recovery or those wanting to avoid chemicals in their lives.  Our resellers are an extension of our core team and are experts and trusted advisors in their communities.

At our baseline, we believe that all of our products must solve problems and make people feel good.  We also think that natural and organic are not features, they are the choice we make assuring purity of purpose.

How It Began
Wendy Steele and Bob Root are the founders and inventors of Keys Soap.  They are both ex-corporate executives: Bob was a CEO of a Silicon Valley High Tech company and Wendy a VP at Coca-Cola.

The soap and skin care connection?  Skin Cancer!

Wendy Steele, Keys Founder, was diagnosed with Melanoma and beat the deadly disease.  She could not overcome the terrible reactions she had from prescription and expensive skincare products.  Told she had eczema, psoriasis, acne, rosacea and dermatitis her condition deteriorated.  Doctors kept prescribing more junk, steroids, and cortisones.

Wendy was struck with Skin Cancer multiple times.  She has beaten Melanoma and other forms of the devastating skin disease.  As an advocate of Skin Cancer prevention, and an Inner Circle Member of the Skin Cancer Foundation, Wendy has tried virtually every form of skin sun protection.  From exotic 100 SPF swimwear to SPF 30 clothing, and every form of sunblock, she is an expert on taking skin protective measures to avoid sun damage.  From her personal experience, the more products she put on her body, the more sensitive her skin became.  Her use of lotions, sunscreens and exotic clothing cost thousands of dollars annually.  The problem was that no matter what products she used, she did not feel free from itchy irritated skin that was exacerbated by that sticky feeling from lotions and sunscreens.

Wendy recalls: “Bob and I talked for years about creating a rejuvenating soap for my ultra-sensitive skin.  Like many products, Keys Soap was born out of necessity. When we lived in Southern California, I was diagnosed with Melanoma Skin Cancer.  After successful surgery to remove my cancer, I was using so much sunscreen that it started to block my pores and irritate my skin.  My skin was becoming more fragile even though I used the very best lotions money could buy.  I tried natural liquid soap, but it was not quite right.  So, we decided to develop our own organic Castile body soap.  The initial cleansing results and skin relief I experienced using Island Rx finally set me free from experimenting with the myriad of products that had previously smothered my skin.”

Keys Factoids:

  • Safest Sunscreen in the World, EWG 2008, 2009, 2010 Sunscreen Report. www.safecosmetics.org
  • Most effective cosmetic sunscreen. Consumer Reports Magazine, July 2007
  • Oscar Red Carpet Best Picks 2010, Kerry Malouf
  • Maria Shriver 2009 California Women’s Conference Speakers Gift Bag Pick.
  • Luminos, LA Daily Candy Best Moisturizer
  • Natural medicines that heal skin disorders. Dr. Elaine Carter
  • Truly natural beauty products that feel and look great!, Vert Venice Beach CA
  • Natural is better and not a compromise. LA Daily Candy
  • Finally, a natural shampoo that feels and looks better than salon brands. E K, Actress
  • Moisturizers that work in harmony with mineral makeups. K B, Makeup Artist

Keys Product Categories:

  • Natural Anti-Aging Skin Care & Beauty
  • Natural Hair & Scalp Care
  • Healing Skin Therapies & Natural Topical Medicines
  • Natural Pet Care & Natural Topical Medicines
  • Pet Skin Therapies & Natural Insect Repellants

What We Believe

There are two facets to skin health and wellness for pets and people.  It is a combination of what you use and what you avoid.

Skin disorders rank at the top of the list for veterinarian and dermatologist visits.  We believe that over 50% of all skin disorders are misdiagnosed and are caused by chemicals in everyday products…many with the claim of natural, organic or botanical.

Longevity and Wellness are connected.  The life expectancy in the United States for pets and people has been consistently dropping.  Why?  We believe the body burden from the dirty dozen chemicals in skin care and household products may be causing disorders, outbreaks and even contributing to elevated cancer rates.

This is why we use the term Chemical-Free.  It means free of human-made chemicals.  We are committed to leading the way for other manufacturers to disclose product ingredients fully.  Keys created the Therapy Facts panel to help people to make healthier choices for their family and pets.

Ancient Remedies – Modern Technology – Green Science

Today, modern medicine treats symptoms and not the cause.  Their products, therefore, focus on the symptom and not the cause.  Aboriginal, eastern, holistic, herbal, naturopathy and ancient medicines treat the whole being and look for the cause.  In many cases, it is an imbalance that causes disease and disorders.

We search the world for ancient remedies.  We use modern technology, green science, and pharmaceutical grade ingredients.  We create products that work in harmony to:

• Solve skin problems

• Soothe skin allergies

• Heal minor cuts, abrasions, and burns

• Act as natural insect repellents

Our affiliations include:

• University of Maryland School of Medicine

• Los Alamos National Labs

• National Institutes of Health

• Ohio State University

• Environmental Working Group

• Compact signer for The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics

The Keys Difference –What We Use:

• Whole Natural ingredients to bring skin health back in balance

• Understanding of the causes and effect of various skin disorders,

allergies and problems

• Simple ingredients in use for over 1000 years in other parts of the world

• Safe ingredients for pets and people

Pharmaceutical Grade & Quality for Efficacy-Results

• Pharmaceutical Grade Ingredients is a term that defines the level of quality in the industry.  It also establishes the efficacy of an ingredient

• Therapeutic Proportions – Keys Therapy Facts panel state the level of the number of ingredients that we use in our products

Why it Matters:

There is a direct relationship to the quality and grade ingredients in products and the results you get.  Many products promote Aloe Vera and Shea Butter as ingredients.  Pharma Grade ingredients are rated the best in quality, with the highest level of critical actions and values associated with them.  When you read a label, you should ask:  what grade ingredients and in what proportion?  For example, our Aloe has a polysaccharide level of 10.  Many Aloe’s we tested were not even Aloe.  Our Shea Butter tests to a fatty acid level of >2.5.  Many processed Shea’s are less than 0.8.  There is a difference in even the same named ingredient.

The Keys Difference – What We Avoid:

• Fragrance – they are known skin irritants for pets and people, and many contain chemicals found on the Dirty Dozen list that you should avoid!

• Chemicals that are in 85%+ of skincare and household products

• The ‘Dirty Thirty’ list of chemicals – see the complete list on the back inside panel of this brochure

You Get What You Pay For!

• We develop chemical-free healing therapies that have a high degree of efficacy

• We don’t cut corners or use less expensive ingredients or market various scents or fragrances

• We use pharmaceutical grade ingredients in therapeutic proportions, so our products cost more.  Ironically, in most cases, they are one-third to half the price of prescription products

Attaining healthy youthful skin is a lifetime journey.  In this quest, people use soaps, scrubs, gels, toners, moisturizers, lotions, creams, lighteners and the list goes on!  They also bathe their pets in shampoos for their armotharapy instead of the pet’s well being.  Most of these products use chemicals that sensitize, irritate and weaken the skin.  For example, 95% of all liquid soaps and shampoos contain SLS (sodium lauryl or laureth sulfates) that increase skin permeability and opens the door for other chemicals and irritants to penetrate deep into the skin.  Parabens, petrolatum, propylene glycol, Cocamide DEA/lauramide DEA and triethanolamines are common ingredients in all kinds of soaps, shampoos, creams, and lotions.  When on the skin or absorbed into the body, they can create susceptibility to allergic skin reactions, skin disorders and even worse are linked to diseases!

If you or your pets has irritated or affected skin, odds are good that it is caused by the shampoo, body and face soap you use, anti-bacterial hand products, or residue from your laundry detergent. The skin is our single biggest organ, and skin health is vitally important.  Most of the soaps people use on their skin is a degreasing detergent; in fact, most of the liquid products using the term “soap” are not soaps at all.  They are chemical detergents containing SLS that strip away oils and actually damage the skin.  That is why there is very little difference between most bath gels, dishwashing liquid, shampoos and engine degreasers.

The Keys philosophy is to simplify skin care by carefully and naturally cleansing, restoring and protecting the most sensitive skin.  We consciously act on that philosophy to improve skin health.  We choose not to use chemicals in our products, on purpose!

Keys Soap, Island Rx, Show Promise in Helping with Common Skin Disorders

Keys Soap first announced the introduction of its new line of all-natural, chemical-free therapeutic liquid bath and hand soaps on March 29, 2005.  Keys liquid soaps are holistic, soothing, therapeutic soaps for people with sensitive, allergic or affected skin.  They contain only pure ingredients with no human-made chemicals or fragrances.  Our soaps do not contain skin irritants like SLS, parabens, propylene glycol or DEA.

Since the release of our soap products, we have received considerable feedback from skin disorder sufferers offering qualitative results from their use of Island Rx on diagnosed common skin disorders like acne, eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea.  We have many testimonials that would indicate the effectiveness of Island Rx.  “Although these are  testimonials in uncontrolled environments we believe they are early signs of the therapeutic properties of Island Rx,” said Bob Root, Keys Soap inventor.  “In this period of time, medical estheticians have told us of results with their patients where prior medical methods did not help their conditions.  We now believe that our products, including Island Rx, are tools in the growing movement of alternative chemical-free skin health”, continued Root.

What Keys Customers Value

People and pets with dry skin, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea and acneic conditions value the therapeutic results from using our clean products that contain no irritating or sensitizing chemicals.  Our customers enthusiastically tell us in their testimonials how our products make a difference in treating skin disorders, and irritation for themselves, their children and their pets–when nothing else has worked.

After using our chemical-free therapeutic products, our customers tell us that the results they see and feel are remarkable and even life-changing!  We call this creating chemical-free skin health, on purpose, with our products and customers.

Dermatologists use our Island Rx therapeutic soap and recommend it for sensitive skin for people with skin disorders that have not responded to other treatment.  We even have customers who enthusiastically recommended our soaps to their dermatologists!

In 2009, we were told by movie and TV makeup artists that Keys products taught them that natural is no longer a compromise and that Island Rx Foaming Wash, Luminos, Solar Rx and Eye Butter have become a staple in their makeup routine calling them, “Clear Cosmetics!”

Medical estheticians use and recommend Island Rx for sensitive, irritated and acneic skin conditions to avoid any further irritation or sensitization of the skin.  They love how it makes their skin feel and the results they see.

Master certified groomers use and recommend MetaClean (formerly Muttineer) for how the therapeutic pet shampoo stops animals’ itchy skin and for how it conditions the animals’ coat and skin.

Our customers are people who are interested in keeping their skin young looking and aging beautifully; people who are skin health conscious; and people who take serious sun precautions to avoid skin damage from solar radiation.  Our customers also care about the skin health of their pets and want to avoid applying pesticides and chemicals on their pets’ sensitive or allergic skin.

Keys sees a link between common skin disorders and the many personal care products containing SLS

While developing Keys soaps, Bob Root authored an opinion whitepaper that raises the suspicion that some diagnosed common skin disorders are a reaction for some people to sodium laureth sulfate and other chemicals found in personal care and skin care products.  This whitepaper can also be downloaded from the Keys Soap website at  http://www.keys-soap.com/skindisorders.pdf In this whitepaper; Root points out that in many cases where people had been diagnosed with skin disorders by physicians, their disorders went away when people stopped using SLS products and started using Keys Soap.  Included is the story of a woman diagnosed with psoriasis whose involuntary scratching at night led to bloodied bed sheets and a seven-month-old diagnosed with eczema who had scales from head to toe except where his disposable diapers covered.  All went away in a matter of days after discontinuing SLS based laundry detergent and bath gels.  Wendy Steele, the cause of the Keys Soap invention offered, “When Bob first developed Island Rx for me, most of the prescription gels and cleansers that I was told to use contained SLS.  An article I read suggested that SLS may be a culprit and I stopped using everything with SLS in it.  I was utterly amazed at how many things in my life contained SLS or one of its family of products.  My shampoo, my bath gel, facial cleanser, all my laundry products and even my toothpaste all contained SLS.  During this time, the doctor told me I  had minor acne, minor eczema, minor psoriasis.  I got tired of hearing the word minor—it was pretty major to me.  I now believe that it was all SLS related.” Root added; “I am not sure if SLS itself is the cause of the irritation or the fact that it purportedly increases the permeability of the skin along with absorption by the skin of chemicals by a factor of 10 times that is the cause of the skin mimicking common skin disorders.  What I know for sure is that our small sample of Island Rx users has seen a resulting change in a matter of a few days.”

The Technology behind Keys Islandceutical™ personal care products is a form of Quantum Science

Keys Islandceutical products merge holistics with herbal therapy and science to provide clean, chemical-free skin health, aromatherapy and a lift to the spirit.  Our products are designed with ingredients to gently clean, restore and protect using advanced technologies that are safe and effective.  Working with national labs and universities, we look for state of the art and “skip generation” technologies as a continuous learning and development model.

Essential Oils – We use the highest pharmaceutical grade ingredients that are known for their healing effect on the skin for burns, dry skin and skin afflictions.

Herbal Therapy Naturopathy – Our ingredients target skin problems at the cellular level.  They are natural healing ingredients used by holistic dermatologists and estheticians.

Chemical-Free – Our ingredients are truly natural.  Clean, chemical-free and 100% vegan, with no artificial color or fragrances, our products are all handcrafted to contribute to therapeutic skin health.

We have sought out aboriginal healers, dermatologists, estheticians and homeopathic practitioners to find out what they use to rejuvenate and protect the skin.  Besides moisture, they prescribe natural oils and herbs to deep clean and open the pores to receive healing oxygen.  Our experience with physicians educated at Scripps Institute and Johns Hopkins in our 10-year design quest has given us a broad-reaching knowledge of skin conditions and the required treatments.  These guides helped us to find those ingredients that offer the greatest benefits to the skin.

Our processes are as unique as our ingredients.  The adage that oil and water do not mix is no longer true because of the science developed by keys.  Manufacturing techniques that include ultrasonics and infrasonics help blend the minimal number of ingredients to smooth lotions and soaps.  The industry average for a skincare product is 38 ingredients/chemicals.  At Keys, we average 8 whole ingredients that are simple and safe.  This is why Keys natural products continue to rate the safest and most effective based on the www.safecosmetics.org Skin Deep report that ranks product safety.

Keys Islandceutical™ introduced new products at the Natural Products Expo East Show –

the new line adds a therapeutic  lotion, healing serum and therapeutic chemical-free sunblock

Keys announces the release of three new products to the only skincare line that is both chemical-free and therapeutic to clean, restore and protect for real skin health.

Like the Keys soaps released in April 2005, our products contain only pure natural ingredients, no human-made chemicals or fragrances, and no Sodium Laureth Sulfate!  The complete Keys line enables total skin care including cleaning the skin, restoring damaged or affected skin, and protecting the skin from solar radiation effects.

Keys Soap exhibited at the Natural Product Expo East trade show September 16-18, 2005 at the Washington DC Convention Center.  An international audience of trend spotters, retailers, industry leaders, and media will gather at the Washington D.C. Convention Center to interact with more than 1,100 exhibitors of natural and organic finished products and ingredients this Sept. 15-18, 2005 at the 20th anniversary of Natural Products Expo East/Organic Products Expo-BioFach America.  The tradeshow will pinpoint industry trends and offer unmatched opportunities to sample and learn about the finest natural and organic products from around the world. More than 20,000 industry members attended Natural Products Expo East in 2004.

Keys® Introduces Therapy Facts™ Product Labeling

Therapy FactsTM Panel added to product label fully discloses all ingredients and percentages of active ingredients and our New Keys Logo Affirms Medicinal Differentiation of Products

Here is the press release that changed how the industry looks at ingredients and disclosure.  This marked the beginning of a trend and perhaps even a law regarding full-disclosure of ingredients for all skin care products.

Annapolis, MD: – March 29, 2007 –  Keys Care CEO, Wendy Steele,  revealed today at a press conference Keys new logo and Therapy FactsTM product labeling.

The new Keys logo is a stylized white cross on a circular red field that resembles an Internet icon.  This new logo symbolizes the merging of high tech manufacturing and the medicinal properties. It also clearly differentiates Keys products from chemical-based fragranced products.

Keys also add a Therapy FactsTM Panel to every label that identifies the ingredients, their purpose and the percentages of active healing ingredients.  The panel also indicates Keys use of pharmaceutical grade ingredients in therapeutic proportions versus the industry standard operating procedure of listing ingredients that are in minuscule levels only for label content.

Wendy Steele, Keys CEO, elaborated, “I developed my first pet care product Muttineer because of a severe life-threatening reaction my Bichon had after being shampooed at a groomer.  Analyzing the shampoo, we found a sodium laureth sulfate (SLS) levels exceeding 30%; the National Institutes of Health comment that SLS levels greater than 18% can kill a small animal.  As we developed more products, our customers asked for more disclosure of ingredients in plain English to make quick buying decisions.  As we thought it through, it was obvious that people are used to the Nutrition Facts (USDA) label required on all food products.  So, we adopted the format and modified it to make sense for end users of our products, retailers and other manufacturers.”

The Keys Therapy FactsTM panel is on all their new products labels and will eventually be on their entire line of personal and pet care products.  The panel identifies critical decision points for buyers.  Here is a list of the core sections of the panel.

•   Standardized design and look

•   Organic content of the product

•   Affirmation of “100% Natural, Vegan and Biodegradable” contents

•   Affirmation of Pharmaceutical Grade Ingredients in Therapeutic Proportions

•   List of ingredients, their English name, the vitamins contained in the ingredient or their actions

•   The actual percentages of active ingredients

•   The Environmental Working Group ranking of the safety of the           products

•   A product purpose statement

•   Instructions for use

•   No Animal Testing affirmation

•   Manufacturing country (USA)

•   Contact information

Wendy Steele, Keys Founder, continued, “This Therapy FactsTM panel just speaks for itself.  It is a response to numerous customer inquiries.  We encourage other manufacturers to follow suit and fully disclose their ingredients and levels.  We are discussing licensing of our Therapy FactsTM panel to other manufacturers and to those that we will be private labeling all natural chemical-free skin care products for them.  Our purpose is full disclosure of all ingredients and an assurance from licensees that they will provide an honest description to their customers through this panel on their products.  In turn, consumers and dealers will have a clear understanding of the purpose and actions of a product.”

Keys Soap Technology Background

Keys Soaps solve skin problems, stimulate the senses, and create positive emotions.  Islandceutical™ is our term that assures people of these three criteria.

Bob Root, a former Silicon Valley CEO, and Wendy Steele, a former Coca-Cola executive, founded Keys Soap.  Bob invented the soaps to help Wendy, the love of his life, a melanoma survivor.  Her suffering and a desire to maintain her active, outdoor lifestyle drove him to give back her quality of life. Wendy said, “The Keys Soap story isn’t about starting a business or being an entrepreneur.  It is about enjoying life with healthy skin.  I am determined to live an active, healthy outdoor lifestyle after experiencing melanoma.”

“It was not my technology background that inspired the formulation of my soaps, it was my study as a chef that guided me,” said Bob. “Like creating a great culinary masterpiece, the ingredients have to work together, be of the highest quality and must be skillfully added in the proper order.  More importantly, the meal must have a positive intention for the person savoring it.  This is the way of Keys!”

Aromatherapy Benefits of Keys Soaps

All Keys Soaps are a form of aromatherapy.  We have mapped the essential oils (EO) we use to provide a lift to the spirit and senses.  Aromatherapy has proven to affect the mind and the moods of people.  This is why we have chosen the spirit-lifting citrus blends combined with natural EO herbal extracts as a side purpose for our soaps.  Keys handcrafts our products to lift the spirit as well as provide therapeutic benefits to the skin.

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The Not New Solar Rx – Improved and Unchanged!

The New FDA Sunscreen regulations are about to go into effect.

Last year I wrote and article in July of 2011 about what to expect from the new regulations.  The article outlined all of the changes we as manufacturers had to make to make the regulatory changes seamless to consumers.  You can read the article titled “New FDA Sunscreen Regulations.”

There are a number of new things to expect to see in place by June 12, 2012.  Rather than bore you with details, here are some bullets of the major changes

  • SPF used to mean only UVB protection.  Now manufacturers have to guarantee that protection is “Broad Spectrum” covering both UVA and UVB
  • All the outrageous SPF numbers (i.e. SPF 75, SPF 100+ etc.) are now illegal.  The top rating is now SPF 50+
  • The use of the term sublock is no longer allowed.  We can only use the term sunscreen
  • Cosmetic moisturizer like Solar Rx must comply with all of the regulation applying to sunscreens
  • Waterproof is a no no term.  Now a sunscreen can be water resistent, but the manufaqctuer must prove it and list the minutes of water resistent protectin on the label front
  • There is now a very specific Drug Facts label that has to appear on the back of the product with very spefici language.  Below is an image of our new label with the drug facts panel.  The panel looks very similar to the panel we have used for the last five years, but is different.

The Not New Solar Rx – Improved

Solar Rx is not new in the sense that we have not changed the formulation or concentration of the ingredients.  We have been in compliance with the new FDA regulations for the last two years.   That said, we do have a new labels and a few process changes. Continue reading The Not New Solar Rx – Improved and Unchanged!

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Dramatic Skin – Keys Reflex ProBiome – New Revolution

Reflex ProBiome – The Back Story

Bob Root, Keys Chief Scientist & Founder

Reflex is one of the oldest new products we have.  I know that does not make sense.  It does to me because I developed Reflex almost five years ago and have been testing it since under the code name of Silken.  My problem was that the delay had nothing to do with developing the product, packaging or refinement.  My problem?  At least three of the ingredients I needed were not available in quantities greater than a few gallons.  If you keep in mind that I need thousands of liters or gallons to bring a product to market, a single liter is only good to prototype and lead to frustration.  As if it was a sign from the heavens at this place in space and time, providers showed up with production quantities of high grade organic virgin avocado oil, virgin Tamanu oil and our own ability to volume extract our Muras.  Later in the aricle below, all the ingredients are described and it was the fact that I can buy ample quantities of raw materials without compromising quality facilitate the launch of our new product by its real name.  Reflex ProBiome is unquestionably a big deal because of its ingredient quality.  Now we can produce it in manufacturable quantities.

Dramatic Skin – Keys Reflex ProBiome Anti-Aging Fusion

A biome is an ecological community operating together in harmony. Since we began Keys, we have treated the skin and its flora as a biome or eco-system. Reflex ProBiome feeds the community offering functional nutrients for the skin and friendly flora. Chemicals in skin care products destroy the skin’s flora and create imbalance on the skin. Reflex ProBiome is designed to restore the balance and make skin look remarkable.

Go To Keys Store for Reflex Probiome
Click Here to Go to Keys Store for Reflex Probiome

Reflex ProBiome is the culmination of four years of development combining modern skin age reversal without chemicals, hormones, synthetic steroids or fillers. Using Reflex ProBiome, you can expect reduction or elimination of fine lines, reduction of expression lines, skin toning, skin surface sculpting, firmness and more even skin color. The smooth luminescent finish and quick absorption into the skin are hallmarks of the quality of Reflex ProBiome. Simply we would place Reflex ProBiome in any competition against ‘any’ other anti-aging
or wrinkle solutions. Besides our confidence in Reflex ProBiome performance, it is completely made from natural unmodified ingredients.  At $24.95, it outperforms international chemical laden brands at a fraction of the cost.  The reason is simple 7 natural pharma grade ingredients compared to 50-75 ingredients that sometimes include hormones, Botox and exotic aggressive chemicals.

The secret of Reflex ProBiome is the combination of natural ingredients, the quality of the ingredients and the fact that all ingredients are whole and functional. Functional ingredients are those that are not over-processed and contain the whole properties from nature. Functional ingredients are on purpose and perform needed features and benefits to maximize skin appearance, hydration and skin health.

Reflex ProBiome is made from the purest organic oils assembled to replicate the skin’s own sebum while offering tetrapeptides, triglycerides, fatty acids, quadracarotenoids and nutrients that affect skin cell shape and health. Combining Organic Virgin Avocado oil, Organic Virgin Tamanu oil, Shea oil, ancient renowned Black Seed oil, Bergamot essential oil and the undisputable performance of Carrot Seed oil with our own Miras organic extract makes Reflex ProBiome a functional anti-aging product that is created from pure natural ingredients.

Continue reading Dramatic Skin – Keys Reflex ProBiome – New Revolution

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The News Is Not All Bad!

Bob Root, Keys Chief Scientist & Founder

I must admit that I have been CNN Free for nearly tens years. Really!  I find myself working at looking at the world through positive lenses.  I have found that watching things out of my control affects my overall health.  This is not an “ignorance is bliss” approach to living as much as it is a focus on what I can effect, affect and control.

For some time now, I have been afflicted with the belief that much of our health is not about doctors, prescription or even prevention.  As I have studied, for my own life, I have found that health and specifically skin health, are directly relates to changing behaviors and realizing that it is not just about what we put into or on our body, it is how we do it and exercising the critical systems of the body.  Simply, just eating right and going to the gym are minor things and pale in comparison to focusing on our physical, mental and endocrine body balance.
My research may or may not be leading to a new book, but one thing for sure is that I believe that much of our skin health has been too focused on the negative aspects of just a few chemicals when how we live our skin health is far more important.

I have been working on a skin health regime that involves changing lifestyle and is almost devoid of talking about products in favor of changing behaviors.  Mehmet Oz (aka Dr. Oz) inspired me to look at a holistic approach to skin health.  Indeed I have began to write this “book” and will publish excerpts here as they become more real to me.  My hope is to take a part of a well deserved holiday and, at least, write a definitive blog article that one could call a book draft outline.

As I have studied, I realized that we have all be overly influenced by blog articles, public lobbying by NGO’s (non governmental organizations) like FOE, NPA, EWG et al.  Life should be about balance and I struggled to find a single source that I can reference that would offer a positive approach to skin conditions, skin disorders and skin health.  I was chatting with a fellow researcher involved at the Human Microbiome Project. (https://commonfund.nih.gov/hmp/) and asked her if she knew of a resource.  She laughed at me and said, “how about next door.”   I have to admit that I had one of those V8 moments as I slapped my forehead.  What she meant by next door is the National Libraryof Medicine sponsored by our tax paying support of the National Institutes of Health.  The group is called MedlinePlus and is an online resource that is amazing.

I obviously believe in the Skin Deep database, the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, The Breast Cancer Fund and all the positive work that goes on.  Said, these people take an approach of “don’t use this or that,”  “these things will hurt you” and “don’t do this” without offering many reasons or solutions.  MedlinePlus makes all of the information from all these “Bad News” agencies pale in comparison.  The best analogy I have is that if information was water, all of the NGO resources add up to a thimble of water into an Olympic pool that is MedlinePlus.

So, here are just a few articles that focus just on the skin, nails and hair on the MedlinePlus database.  My hope is that they will offer you positive solutions to help your skin and feed your positive spirit at the same time.

Update!  Our friends at The Babble Out (www.thebabbleout.com) approached our customer service to look at an eczema article they wrote.   It is quite good and worth reading.  Here is the link to Everything About Eczema.

Note:  When our customer service leader forwarded the article from Zoey at Babble Out to me, it caused me to read the article for value here, but it also reminded me that innovation is constant and articles like mine or from Babble Out are not dynamic unless we stay on top to make these article real-time.  Next to impossible, we will try to be more diligent in staying current with new technologies.

Coming from the computer industry where you either innovate or die, our world has begun to adopt the rapid innovations cycle.  Anything where people are helping people is both responsibility and serving.

For example, there is amazing work being done in Canada in Vernon at a spa where they expose eczema suffers to decreasing temperatures where the skin is blast-chilled.   Results have been remarkable and worth Googling “Eczema Cryotherapy.”

MedlinePlus Trusted Health Information for You

Skin, Hair and Nails Topics
Below is the link to the ‘Cosmetics’ link above to give you an idea of what you will find.  What you will quickly notice is that there is a simple description and links to numerous articles on various subjects in detail.  All said, don’t get too caught up in this because it all may lead to a new form of insanity disorder.  😉

Photograph of an eye shadow case with four shadow colors and a brushCosmetics

Also called: Makeup

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 Cosmetics are products you apply to your body to clean it, make it more attractive or change the way it looks. They include
  • Hair dyes
  • Makeup
  • Perfumes
  • Skin-care creams

Products such as dandruff shampoo, fluoride toothpaste and antiperspirant deodorant are both cosmetics and drugs. A good way to tell if you’re buying a cosmetic that is also a drug is to see if the first ingredient listed is an “active ingredient.” The active ingredient is the chemical that makes the product effective, and the manufacturer must have proof that it’s safe for its intended use. To find out all the ingredients in a cosmetic you use, check the container. Manufacturers are required to list them. Labels such as “natural” and “hypoallergenic” have no official meaning. Companies can use them to mean whatever they want.

Food and Drug Administration

 What’s this?
 Start Here
 The top row in the table of contents box contains the following groups:Basics,Learn More, andMultimedia & Cool Tools.

For group Basics

For group Multimedia & Cool Tools

The bottom row in the table of contents box contains the following groups:Research,Reference Shelf, andFor You.

 For group Research

For group Reference Shelf

For group For You

Overviews

 

 

 

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Keys Omni – New Revolutionary Skin Spray Elixir

Omni – Skin Elixir Spray 60ml (2oz)

Omni is a revolutionary product from every aspect.  Omni is a technology term derived from the Latin word Omnis meaning “all.” When we began to develop AquaVit, it became clear that our Ariane ingredient had wonderful properties. Omni was originally being developed with an ingredient we named Miras. Miras is a special ingredient that comes from the fruit of the Forsythia plant and has very high levels of Oleanolic which is known to have many healing and cleansing properties for the skin without harming the skins probiotic EcoSystem.  We then combined Ariane and Miras together for a combined effect that rivals any skin care, anti-aging or beauty product in the world.  Of course, I am biased. Continue reading Keys Omni – New Revolutionary Skin Spray Elixir

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You are what you apply – to your skin!

You are what you apply – to your skin! What’s in your body lotion?

You’ve heard the old adage “you are what you eat.” Now I’d like to add another to that. “You are what you apply.” To your skin, that is!  Substances that affect your overall health and wellbeing don’t simply work their way through your system by travelling the gut alone.  An often-overlooked route – the transdermal (through the skin) route – allows substances ranging from the beneficial to the bad to enter your bloodstream and circulate throughout your body.  So, if you are what you eat, and you are what you apply, the question is:  what are you? Continue reading You are what you apply – to your skin!

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AguaVit & Omni – Two New Functional Ingredient Products From Keys

Keys Skip Generation Technology – Blended Whole Botanicals

by Bob Root  Keys Technologist

We are about to introduce two new products that represent a significant advancement for us and the industry.  AguaVit and Omni are two new products coming soon that employ a remarkable change for us in how we produce products that offer functionality, efficacy and performance.

Traditionally, companies blend ingredients to create a new product.  These can be oils, essential oils, extracts and blends of ingredients that were separately processed.  Often these ingredients are estered or separated and refined for a specific function.  For example, Vitamin E can be refined from vegetables  to look for and extract only a portion of the Vitamin E or the creation of a Tocopherol substance using refining processes.   Then many ingredients with separated functionality are blended together to create some action.  This is a lot of work and I continually question separating components of any natural substance to increase its intensity.  Deriving an intense form of Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) from fruit like apples sounds natural, but it is not.  The intense action of an AHA burns the skin to exfoliate rapidly with many consequences beyond red skin.  So it true of many estered ingredients. Continue reading AguaVit & Omni – Two New Functional Ingredient Products From Keys

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On The Press! New Book by Keys Founder – Bob Root

Chemical-Free Skin Health!

Bob announced the beginning of a book focused on skin health over two years ago at the Natural Products Expo West. His book will be published in early October and Bob will officially launch the book at the 2010 California Women’s Conference. Maria Shriver chose Keys Luminos for last years Women’s Conference for the speakers gift bag. This year, she chose Keys Solar Rx for the speakers gift bag.

The book, titled “Chemical-Free Skin Health” with a subtitle of “Stop • Challenge • Choose” will be published by Orion’s M42 publishing company and will be sold on the show floor by Vroman’s bookstore. Bob will be at the show signing the books.

Keys will be exhibiting in the newly created section called the “ECO Island” which features green sustainable products. For those attending, Bob and Wendy will be in the Keys booth along with Kathleen Beaton, Hollywood makeup artist and writer of the Foreword for Bob’s book. Kerry Malouf, motion picture makeup artist and beauty editor for Malibu Magazine will also be in the Keys booth in the ECO Island. Continue reading On The Press! New Book by Keys Founder – Bob Root

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Triclosan: The Biocide That Creates Super Bugs?

Triclosan: The Biocide that Creates Super Bugs?

By Bob Root, Keys Technologist

 

Bob Root, Keys Technologist

Chemical Warfare Chapter 12:  Biocides:  Indiscriminate killers that create super bugs?

For almost two years, I have been working on a book draft titled, “Chemical Warfare.”  It is a book focused on simplifying information about personal care and household products uses and concerns for public safety.  As I studied, I realized how much hearsay there was in the industry.  Taking a scientific approach, I turned to the research community for insights and facts…as best as they are.  Part of my dedication was and is to release information that is important in real-time.  Books, after all, are merely a snapshot in time and pale in comparison to real-time information gateways like our blog.

FACT vs FUD is a chapter in this book as well as an article on this blog.  In this overly inflammatory news based society of ours, my resistance is to publish anything that is not based in research. Continue reading Triclosan: The Biocide That Creates Super Bugs?

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Parabens Good Or Bad Guys

Both?

Bob Root, Keys Technologist

As a part of my ongoing series of looking at the Dirty Dozen Chemicals shown to provide elevated cancer rates in people and animals, in this article, I outline why we do not use parabens leaving the judgmental diagnosis to the NGO’s attacking them.  The Dirty Dozen Chemicals are a list of 12 developed originally by the Marin County Cancer Project which at the time, had the highest Cancer Rates in the US.  Followed by Search For The Cause and Teens Turning Green the list is now designated the Dirty Thirty.

So, are parabens good guys or bad guys?  Both it seems and there is a why we do not use them as well.

Below is a scavenged description of parabens from Wikipedia.    On the surface and from a chemical perspective they do their job.  Many chemists and companies support their use based on a belief of safety.  I believe that they are looking at the wrong reasons for safety.

Our society seems to primarily look at safety as, “will what we put on our skin hurt us directly?”  I believe that we should be looking at whether it hurts us based on contact and will it cause something else to hurt us because of it. Continue reading Parabens Good Or Bad Guys

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Wax and Other Things That Threaten Mankind

Ingredients, Skin Deep Report  and Everything Else…

Musing from an interview with Bob Root, Keys Care CTO

Bob Root, Keys Chief Technologist Near Los Alamos National Labs

I recently took up Storm Chasing as a hobby… Just kidding although I feel like one of those guys chasing Tornado’s in the Midwest when it comes to the natural products industry.

I was recently on a conference call with various members of the Natural Products Manufacturers Association enraged about a change that the EWG had made in the rating of Vegetable Emulsifying Wax from a 1 to a 4.  The tone was angry because as Compact Signers, we were not given a why, who, what or a heads-up at all to the change.  As of the time of the call, no one knew why the ranking was changed, who provoked it or the reason for the change.  Normally, I would not address this here on our blog, but there has been so much uproar at the consumer level that our customer service, sales and marketing teams asked for some clarity.  The title of this article maybe should have been Williams Shakespeare’s,  “Much Ado About Nothing!”

Continue reading Wax and Other Things That Threaten Mankind

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Keys Product Labels

Click Here To View Keys Labels

We have always published our product labels on our website.  Admittedly they have been a little hard to find and took some work.  As a part of the evolution of our website and our dedication to simpler more informed content, we have created a page on our blog dedicated to our products from an informational standpoint.  The page on the main menu bars above and to the right show a new category called “Keys Products.”  As we add information, it will appear in this category and as a brief article like this one.

So, now all of our label art in flat pattern is available to be viewed by clicking this link or the label image herein.  You can also go to the category page and click the link there to see these labels.

You will also notice that we are beginning to add recycle symbols to our labels.  Many of our containers are made in the EU and do not have mold recycle marks.  These packages are fully recyclable.  We are adding the symbol to all of our labels as an assurance.  As we add the symbol, we will update the label art page above to reflect the changes.

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New Eye Butter – A Better Butter

New Eye Butter

eye_butter

Softer, smoother and more effective anti-aging properties

By Bob Root, Keys Technologist

Eye Butter is now better butter.  The ingredients are the same.  The amount of each ingredient has not changed.  Two of the processes in making Eye Butter have been changed to increase its efficacy and soften the consistency while also being smoother.

Continue reading New Eye Butter – A Better Butter

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Our Green Piece…How It’s Made at Keys!

by Bob Root

Keys Technologist

Clean, Caring, Concerned and Diligent!

Everyone want to know these days what is in your products, what is not in your products and how does the making of your products effect the environment.  I thought it might be lighter to use the title Green Piece with an ‘i’ because that is what the PR people call the eco statement that a company offers.  Often these are full of $5 dollar words and platitudes.  So, I have attempted to inform here without using too many words or big words that have no meaning.  I am sure I have missed something, so make sure you use the comment box to ask me your questions.
Keys is not just another natural products manufacturer.  We design skin care solutions that solve problems.  If there was a FDA category for Natural Medicines, you would find Keys there.  What you will notice about our products is that we present them as natural solutions to problems with features, benefits and advantages offered.  We are not a company that focused on scents, nor do we add any ingredients to scent our products.  Although many people comment on the way our products smell, it usually begins with adjectives like clean, fresh, earthy et al.

It was about seven years ago that Keys burst on the scene of the Natural Products Industry when we exhibited at the Natural Products Expo trade show.  It was synergistic that about the same time that many well known “natural products” manufacturers were exclaiming that they were going to remove the Dirty Dozen chemicals from their products over the next few years that we showed up with none of them.  When the show opened, many were shocked to see that we created stable functional products that had none of the Dirty Dozen.  In fact, we never had them in our products.

Keys cause and mission was to create products for people with sensitive skin, post cancer recovery and for people with chemical based skin disorders.  We simply could not use the Dirty Dozen as well as hundreds of other chemicals and fragrances that were commonly used.  Our mission at the show was to not out-do others in what seemed to be more of a PR race.   We were there to provide niche market products which we labeled as Chemical-Free Skin Health®  We presented ourselves, not just as a natural product, but skin health products that competed with pharmaceutical products for efficacy and that are natural…chemical-free!

What does natural mean?  To us, it is the use of whole ingredients that are naturally processed from plants, herbs and botanicals.  This means no synthetic man-made chemicals.  It also means that we can trace every ingredient and every constituent ingredient back to their origin.  For example, we use whole natural virgin avocado oil, we know the grower, we know their process and we know what was used in the grove where the fruit was harvested.  We know this for all of our ingredients.

What we do not use is as important as what we use.  Even though we say whole natural ingredients, sometimes it is important to point out what we do not use to assure people of the integrity of our products.  To begin, there are no Dirty 30, Dirty 100 or Dirty 10,000 chemicals in our products.  No man-made chemicals.  That means no sulfates, parabens and all the other no’s that you see on labels and advertising.  This pushes down to the ingredients that make up some of our combined ingredients.  Our ingredients are whole which means that they have not been modified or obtained from genetically modify plants.

Our products are gluten-free, vegan, not soy based and use no corn.  All ingredients are on our labels.  All!

We use and develop functional ingredients to improve skin health.  This is a relatively new science developed from some old world methods where we use whole fruits, herbs, botanicals, spices and plant ingredients placed into a “worting” fermenting like process and then extracted using a steam process to architect ingredients that serve a specific purpose.  We give these ingredients names like Ariane and Miras to help distinguish what they do for the skin.  Almost all future development at Keys is in this direction.  You can read more about it in the Keys Science article.

So as a bit of background, we developed all of our products using ancient remedies upgraded with modern technology and pharmaceutical ingredients in therapeutic proportions.  Although many of the products have their roots in centuries old recipes, we have refined our processes using sometimes exotic methods to make our finished products.  For example, many companies us aerated homogenizers to get a fine smooth finish to their product.  Air means oxygen and that means faster spoiling of the final product.  So, we use infrasonic sound waves emitted by specially designed propeller tips on powered mixers.  Does the same job with no air added into the products.  The list of innovation in how we process our products is long and each are designed to improve the results you get from our products.

When we began to make Keys products, we realized that we had to replace chemical germacides like parabens with natural ingredients that slow bacteria growth to a minimum.  The simple solution would have been to require that our products should be refrigerated.  That was neither practical or reasonable.  The solution for Keys was a combination of natural ingredients and food-like preparation process controls.

Bacteria in the form of Gram Positive rods exist on our skin, in our food and all around us.  It is normal and in many cases, beneficial.  Like probiotic supplements that we take to increase the flora in our gut, the probiotics on the skin are equally as important.  As manufacturers, we could opt to kill them using parabens, but the potential danger of these chemicals and the effects they have on some people precludes us from using them.  Worse, killing the bad using parabens also kills the good that creates imbalances on the skin making it susceptible to disease.  Natural preservatives like rosemary extract really help, but cleanliness is the best first step in maintaining the skins natural probiotics.  So cleanliness is perhaps the most important thing a manufacturer can do to make a trustworthy product.

Cleanliness to us in the manufacturing process is quite rigorous and necessary to create products that have reasonable best used by dates.  The real secret to long shelf life natural products is a combination of a clean manufacturing environment, ingredients with low water content and a packaging environment with little to no air.  To start the process, all raw materials sent to Keys are inspected for microbiology levels far below industry standards.  The we clean our vessels using super-heated steam to sterilize them in a similar fashion that a surgeon uses an autoclave to sterilize their instruments.  Our compounders (aka chefs) wear lintless disposable clothing and special hair protection to ensure a clean work area.  Our factory is a cleanroom like environment that is cleaned using cGMP and ISO 9000 standards.

Finally, our containers, labels and inks are recyclable.  Everything!  We precycle by not using any external packaging and our packing materials are state of the art paper based components.  This even goes down to the fact that we use paper tape to seal the boxes.  Each of our product packages are carefully selected for maximum performance extending shelf life and for the lowest environmental impact.  We use no packaging that has a tendency to be easily infected from the outside environment.  This includes the airless containers seen in the video below.

I recently watched a Science Channel TV show showing how one of the name brand “Natural” manufacturers make their products.  I was shocked to see people without hair nets, masks, lint-free clothing and dumping ingredients into open vats from open cardboard boxes used in shipment.  My first thought was amazement and then I thought that I had better explain to our customers “How It’s Made” at Keys so that no one thinks we make ours that way.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth 10,000 pictures.  The video below describes how we make our Solar Rx from batching to labeling.  Everything you see is in a cleanroom style environment and portrays how we make all of our products.  Clean, caring, concerned and diligent.  The care and concern is obvious.  That is why we say that our most secret ingredient at Keys is our positive intension in every product.