Bria Organics

Treating eczema the natural & effective way


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Testimonial: Daniel Maxwell, Practitioner of Chinese Medicine

Our products have been used alongside alternative medicines by Chinese Medicine Practitioner, Daniel Maxwell. He used our products to compliment his treatments, and told us why:

“As a practitioner of Chinese medicine, I have found Bria Organic Balm to be an excellent topical application for the treatment of dry, inflammatory skin conditions, particularly eczema, and particularly amongst children. Its virtues as I understand them are as follows:

  • It is moisturising without suffocating the skin. This is therapeutically important because not all dry skin conditions are due to actual dryness. According to Chinese medicine the reasons why skin can become dry, itchy and inflamed vary greatly. For example eczema in young children is frequently due to fluids becoming blocked under the skin (‘dampness’ in Chinese medicine terminology); this prevents the blood from properly nourishing the skin, and thus causes the heat, itching, dryness and redness that characterises eczema. Bria Organic Balm can be applied to this type of skin problem to keep the skin supple and prevent further dryness, without preventing the skin from breathing (thus keeping the heat and redness in and the fluids stuck).
  • It provides an alternative to the mineral oil products that currently make up the bulk of current conventional topical medical treatments. These paraffin-based products are ubiquitous, and come in many forms. And whilst they can certainly be less allergenic than some of the ‘natural’ products on the market, in many people they seem to actually aggravate dryness. A patient I recently treated had extremely painful, dry, cracked fingers, and only needed to withdraw from the mineral oil products and steroid creams he had been using for the previous few years – in conjunction with Bria Organic Balm application – and his hands began to heal up.
  • It helps to prevent infection. In many cases of eczema, the continuous cracking of the skin easily causes opportunistic infection by the bacteria that tend to colonise the skin of certain people. The chickweed in Bria Organic Balm seems to help prevent such opportunistic infections.
  • It reduces inflammation. If Bria Organic Balm is used in conjunction with therapy that addresses the root cause of the condition (often internal, which is why many skin conditions will not resolve with topical application alone), it can be used as an alternative to topical steroid creams. Obviously with severe skin conditions it is unwise to immediately withdraw from steroid creams without proper supervision, and such conditions usually need appropriate internal treatment from a skilled practitioner).

In my opinion Bria Organic Balm is one of the best topical applications on the market, and I thoroughly recommend it for people with dry, inflammatory skin conditions.”

Daniel Maxwell M.A. (Cantab), M.Sc., Lic.Ac., MBAcC, MRCHM
Practitioner of Chinese Medicine
London Acupuncture Clinic, 126 Harley Street, London W1G 7JS
Editor of The Journal of Chinese Medicine
http://www.danielmaxwell.com

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The ins and outs of natural skincare

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With a family history of eczema including myself, my husband and newborn I’d tried everything on the market for eczema including prescribed and natural products before making my own!

So at Bria we understand customers are wary of trying new skin products and we know not all natural products are suitable for sensitive skin which is why we made ours different.

Generally our customers come to us because they often react to prescribed products or other natural products. In fact our customers include GP’s, those referred from GP’s, dermatologists, herbal practitioners, reflexologists and more.

We have been selling our Relief Repair Replenish range for dry skin prone to eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis since 2008, in this time we have built up hundreds of positive comments which you can read on our website.  

Some customers find an immediate improvement from the first application. Others, who may have several allergies affecting their skin find they need to use something longer term. It’s worth persevering with natural products over non-natural, as there is little in the commonly used paraffin based products that will help the skin long term.

As well as immediate moisturising effects, the natural oils add vitamins and fatty acids to the skin which many other products do not offer.

Applying creams rich in vitamins and fatty acids should help improve your skin over time. Our doctor told me my son would not grow out of his eczema as it was so severe but now his skin is clear and shows no signs that he ever had eczema.

In particular we use Borage Oil as it has the highest known concentration of GLA (Gamma Linolenic Acid) a fatty acid that eczema prone skin often lacks.

Look at skincare the same as you would food and we all know that fresh, unprocessed foods are better for health.  

It’s almost as important to consider what’s NOT in our products as well as what’s in.

Minimal ingredients maximum impact

Less is more –  definitely the case when dealing with sensitive skin. Our stance is, if it isn’t going to benefit your skin, then it won’t be added.

Using fewer ingredients minimises the chance of sensitivity –  why use three oils in one product to soothe when one is enough? Our ingredients are effective but straightforward – simply plant oils, beeswax and shea butter!

For example, our Bath Oil contains only three ingredients: oils known to soothe, heal and moisturise.

It was also featured by highly regarded beauty editor Kate Shapland in the Telegraph Magazine as a beauty best buy!

A product can be labelled as natural and/or organic yet still contain some common irritants such as preservatives and essential oils, which we avoid in our Relief Repair Replenish range.

We’re proud to be different without compromising effectiveness and avoiding the following commonly found in other products aimed at sensitive skin:

Olive Oil

It’s understandable to think that olive oil would be good for the skin as most of us use it as a cooking oil for health benefits. Also health visitors and midwives recommend using this on babies’ skin as its pure, natural and moisturising.

This is true but it contains a high level of Oleic acid which can damage the skin barrier making it more prone to moisture loss which is why we’d recommend avoiding products with olive oil in.

Cosmetic/Skincare Allergens

All cosmetic/skincare products have to be tested to EU regulations which assess a product for safety and also to identify allergens found in natural ingredients.

As such product labels must declare fragrance allergens if they have more than 0.001% (in a leave on product ie a skin cream) Lavender for example contains fragrance allergens, one being linalool, so for this reason we’d advise to avoid Lavender and products with Lavender essential oil in.  

We are happy to report that none of our products in the Relief Repair Replenish range contain any ingredients containing allergens found under EU regulations.

Alcohol

In short it is known to kill skin cells and damage the skin barrier, it’s not a necessary ingredient for skin health. It’s added for commercial reasons over any real benefit and we won’t compromise on this!    

Water

Water in products can cause irritations too so as ever we advise avoiding moisturisers with water in (or aqua) for two reasons:

  • You will be paying mostly for the water! Cosmetic regulations state ingredients must be listed in volume order so you will commonly find water first, which will have no benefit on the skin!     
  • If you add water then you need to add a preservative or sell products with a very short shelf  life which most companies don’t want to do.

Preservatives

We also don’t use preservatives because we know even natural ones such as potassium sorbate can cause sensitivity. Also as preservatives are not essential in non-water based products we don’t need to use them.

Again they are added so that companies can sell more, extend the shelf life of their products and produce in huge quantities.

We may add water to some of our new products but only our body washes and shampoos (as we believe water has no place in a moisturiser)  but will sell them with a limited shelf life rather than add a preservative.

We prefer keeping things fresh by making small batches every week or so.

Don’t be afraid to keep going back to your GP for advice, you can even take our products along and use them under your GP’s guidance. Skin problems can take on many different appearances and may need specific medication for infections etc, so always seek medical advice.

I was fortunate that my GP was also a Dermatologist and she actually advised that my son could react to any of the creams she prescribed, telling me there were lots to choose from and it was a case of finding a suitable one. To do this she advised using one product on one area at a time to monitor the effects.

Until next time don’t hesitate to get in touch with Polly our Studio Manager, Betti in Sales or myself.  We’re happy to chat on (0191) 4472121 or email us on info@briaorganics.com

You can also check out our website. Our customer testimonials and press reviews are worth looking over at www.briaorganics.com

Once again, we will say this a lot but everyone is different, everyone’s skin is different and allergies can come and go. We are not medically qualified, nor should this advice replace medical advice which should be sought for medical conditions such as eczema.

Thanks for stopping by and feel free to share, comment and get in touch.


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Common Eczema Triggers

Welcome to our very first blog post.

It’s only taken seven years to write this but here we are! The main purpose of this blog is to share useful information, advice and tips on how to treat eczema and related skin conditions naturally.

Hopefully I’m in a pretty good position to help. I’m Lee the founder, mother of two children who both had eczema/allergies, one of which severe enough to spend a week in hospital.

I’ve had life-long sensitive skin, the odd patch of eczema when I was younger and my late husband also had pretty bad eczema from birth and various allergies. So with this and all the suggestions we hear from our customers, we have quite a bit to share!

Where to begin… well, I suppose if you’re reading this then that’s a good start. We would encourage you to do as much research as possible because unfortunately eczema is not always straightforward. There are a lot of causes and a whole load of triggers that can make eczema worse, but thankfully there are a lot of things that can make it better : )

First and foremost STAY POSITIVE

It’s always important to remember that small things can make a difference. However finding out what makes it better and what makes it worse is hard to pinpoint, we know this will be frustrating!

As with all eczema related advice, you will come across conflicting bits of advice. We don’t claim to have all the answers but time and time again, in any situation we advise to keep things simple and avoid unnecessary additives in all aspects of life, be it washing products, food, cleaning products, cosmetics, stress etc.

Sometimes there is no defining answer but the good news is that most changes we recommend will benefit your overall health and the world we live in.

Common triggers are:

  • Soap, washing powders, household cleaning products
  • Perfume/fragrance in skincare, shampoo, washing powders

There are a whole host of other ingredients to avoid in everyday products which we will list soon

  • Changes/extremes in weather, temperature, humidity and sweating
  • House-dust mite
  • Animal dander (fur and hair) and saliva
  • Tree/grass/weed pollens
  • Wool/synthetic clothing/rough fabric or fabric that doesn’t allow the skin to breathe
  • Illness
  • Teething in babies
  • Stress – either induces eczema or eczema increases stress
  • Airborne allergens like pet dander, moulds, pollens and dust.
  • Foods – Dairy, eggs, wheat, soya, artificial flavours and colours
  • Hard water and chlorine at home and in the swimming pool
  • Hormonal changes particularly for women. Symptoms can worsen during pregnancy or before their period. Again we are all different,  we’ve heard from some lucky ladies whose eczema disappeared in pregnancy.

The list can go on and on, these are just a few common triggers. There are a few weird and wonderful allergies out there so it’s worth bearing in mind you can be allergic to anything!

Keeping a diary is a good way to monitor potential triggers for example recording food, exposure to allergens, skincare products used, stress levels, medication used etc. and compare this to the condition/severity/itchiness of your eczema.

We mentioned before that allergies can be complex. A food allergy could begin to trigger a reaction at the same time as, for example, a product that you’ve washed with, however the food allergy could take longer to show its effects meaning the food allergy could go unnoticed as you would presume it was the washing product. Awareness, experimenting and trial and error are key.   

We will go into more detail in future blog posts about the points above and how to manage them.

In the meantime myself or Polly our Studio Manager will be happy to chat on (0191) 4472121 or email us on info@briaorganics.com

You can also check out our website. Our customer testimonials and press reviews are worth looking over at www.briaorganics.com

Finally, we will say this a lot but everyone is different, everyone’s skin is different and allergies can come and go. We are not medically qualified, nor should this advice replace medical advice which should be sought for medical conditions such as eczema.
Thanks for stopping by and feel free to share, comment and get in touch.


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Welcome to our Bria Blog

So we are a little late to the blogging world, about 7 years now we come to think

about it but nevertheless welcome to our first blog post!

 

Over the next few weeks we will be taking a recap on who we are and what we do,

as well as regularly posting things we think you might find interesting and helpful

relating to eczema/dermatitis/psoriasis, sensitive skin, natural skincare and allergies

etc.

 

We’ve got lots of good advice to share drawing on our own personal experiences

(with my own sensitive skin battles and as a mother with two ‘atopic’ children

including my son, the inspiration behind Bria Organics, who spent a week in hospital

when his eczema was at its worst) and from what our customers have shared with

us.

 

So I’m Lee the founder, I’m fairly passionate about natural approaches to everything

but in particular skincare, allergies and food. In a nutshell there is a lot of stuff in

modern life that we can do without that directly and indirectly affects our health and

wellbeing, most of it there for convenience and profit!

 

I will tell you more in the next post about how Bria Organics came to be but where I’d

really like to start is to say thanks to all our customers old and new, in particular

those who are so happy to share their experiences and success stories. It certainly

inspires and motivates us.

 

Hearing that our Relief Repair Replenish Balm meant a child has slept through the

night, someone’s confidence has improved or a skin problem has cleared after years

of trialling hundreds of products really makes us smile. I know from experience that

itchy, sore skin can affect so much of life, physically socially and mentally.

 

I feel really privileged that I’ve been able to grow a business based around helping

others and changing lives (a customer’s words not mine!) albeit with a lot of hard

work and determination and as ever remain committed to making the most effective

products suitable for extra-sensitive skin.

 

Over the past seven years I’ve developed the business to fit around my two children

and never envisaged that it would grow as much as it has. We are still teeny

compared with some but are now selling all over the world, being recommended by

GP’s, dermatology departments and the odd celeb!

 

As my youngest started school last September we’ve been able to step up a gear.

We are working through every aspect of the business, improving our service, making

new products on customer suggestions, improving the website and winning awards!

(more on that to come)

 

But we’d still like to know what you think…

 

So please get in touch, tell us what you think, what new products you’d like to see

and any improvements we can make.

 

Our aim is to share more research, tips and advice relating to eczema, problem skin

and allergies in future posts but please remember we aren’t medically qualified so

always seek medical advice. It’s also good to remember allergies and sensitivities

can be a very individual thing in that what works for one person doesn’t work for

another but the important thing is not to give up hope as there are lots positive

changes you can make.

 

Luckily a lot of the changes we suggest are better for all round health and the

environment too so it’s always worth persevering.

 

If you’d like to hear more you can subscribe by clicking the ‘Follow’ link on the

bottom right of this page, that way when we have any offers and give-aways you will

be the first to hear.