The other day I received an email from a reader asking if I we had looked at Nature’s Gate Organics, a brand focusing on natural ingredients, widely available and with an antiaging line. Hmm, Nature’s Gate Organics hasn’t been on my radar for a while, but somewhere in the back of my mind I had a feeling that I wasn’t too keen on their products. Still, the feeling was hazy and I realized that I ought to check them out. Of course, I started on Truth In Aging.

The first thing that I turned up was a post by Copley on the Organic Consumers Association and a group of organic personal care brands who had filed an official complaint with the USDA against manufacturers that have been falsely promoting beauty and grooming products as “organic.” And, yep you guessed it, Nature’s Gate (and its parent company, Levlad Llc) was one of the companies being accused of greenwashing.

I then went to the Nature’s Gate Organics website and looked at an anti-wrinkle product called Forget Your Lines ($24.99). This does contain organic ingredients; on my count there are 8 of them, out of a total of over 40. There’s more than a little greenwashing going on here. Still, many consumers may be willing to give it the benefit of the doubt providing that is based on botanical actives with good pedigrees as antiagers.

To me Nature’s Gate Organics Forget Your Lines looks as if it has been made by the cosmetic equivalent of Jeckyll and Hyde. Dr Jeckyll was responsible for those eight organic ingredients (hey, he was trying) and he went out of his way to find something called Ameliox. This is made up of my very favorite amino acid, carnosine, which may help extend the number of times that cells replicate themselves, and milk thistle, which contains an antioxidant that helps prevent against cell damage.

Unfortunately, when Dr J took off in time to read his kids a bedtime story, Mr Hyde snuck into the lab (I have a feeling that Hyde’s day job is in the finance dept) and the  first thing he made a grab for cyclopentasiloxane polymethylmethacrylate, a silicone that did not come from the shelf marked or ‘organic’, or even the one labeled ‘natural’. In for a penny, as they say, he found three more silicones, the mildly irritating (possibly toxic) magnesium aluminum silicate, polysorbate 80 (which raises some concerns about toxicity), and the irritant ethylhexylglycerin .

With innocuous preservatives such as sodium coco PG-dimonium chloride phosphate and hinokitiol, Hyde could hardly qualify as Dr Jeckyll’s evil alter ego. He has, however, relegated Nature’s Gate to the status of mediocre drugstore brand with better marketing than content.

Ingredients in Forget Your Lines

Certified Organic (*)Pelargonium Graveolens (Rose Geranium) Allplant Essence, Certified Organic (*)Lavadula Augustifolia (Lavender) Allplant Essence, Cyclopentasiloxane Polymethylmethacrylate, Dimethicone Copolymer, Polysorbate 20, Certified Organic Rosa Gallica (Apothecary's Rose) Flower(2), Viola Tricolor (Violet)(2), Althaea Officinalis, (Marshmallow) Root Extract(1), Echinacea Purpurea Extract(1), Vegetable Glycerin, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Sodium Coco PG-Dimonium Chloride Phosphate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Carnosine, Dimethiconol, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Xanthan Gum, Glucose, Silica, Silybum Marianum (Milk Thistle) Fruit Extract, Certified Organic Rosa Canina (Dog Rose Rosehip) Oil(1), Soy Isoflavone Aglycone, Certified Organic (*)Simmondsia Chinesis (Jojoba) Oil, Bisabolol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Laureth-7, Tocopherol, Butylene Glycol, Polyacrylamide, Hinokitiol, Lecithin, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Fruit Extract, PVP, Polysorbate 80, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides, Alchohol Denat., Lavender Essential Oil, Lavadin Oil.

* Grown in accordance with the California Organic Foods Act of 1990.

1) Certified organic by Quality Assurance International.

2) Certified organic by ECOCERT.