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N6-Furfuryladenine - Nordihydroguaiaretic acid

Beauty and Cosmetic Glossary - N


N6-furfuryladenine. Technical name for kinetin. See kinetin.

N-acetyl-L tyrosine. See tyrosine.

nail polish.  A cosmetic lacquer that dries quickly and that is applied to the nails to color them or make them shiny.

NaPCA. See natural moisturizing factors, and sodium PCA.

Narcissus poeticus wax. Fragrant flower extract that can cause irritation and dermatitis (Source: Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database,

Nardost achys jatamaus. See spikenard.

natto gum. Fermentation product of soy protein. It may be a potent antioxidant (Source: Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry, June 2002, pages 3592-3596).

natural beauty.  Natural beauty is the phenomenon of the experience of pleasure, through the perception of balance and proportion of stimulus. It involves the cognition of a balanced form and structure that elicits attraction and appeal towards a person.  To achieve this treat your skin and body to the best of naturally based body care, with products of extract & essential oils and natural colourings.

natural body care.This means that it won't contain any nasty chemicals. If you appreciate healthy and radiant skin you have to use natural cosmetics..
This products are made of organic fruit, nuts & seeds, etc. In contrast to the synthetic chemicals found on the shelves of stores, natural cosmetics have been specially formulated not to hurt or irritate the skin.natural ingredients.

The FDA has tried to establish official definitions and guidelines for the use of certain terms such as "natural" and "hypoallergenic," but its regulations were overturned in court. That means that cosmetics companies can use these terms on ingredient labels to mean anything they want, with the result that it almost always means nothing at all. The term "all-natural" has considerable market value in promoting cosmetic products to consumers, but a close look at an ingredient label reveals that the plant extracts make up only a small percentage of the product. Plus, when a plant is added to a cosmetic, preserved, and stabilized with other ingredients, it loses its natural qualities (Source: FDA Consumer magazine, May-June 1998, revised May 1998 and August 2000).

Natural Makeup. The good thing about natural beauty products is that they have no preservatives, are eco friendly and fairly versatile. Bioactive compounds, vitamins and nutrients are treasures, which abound in herbs. Many people are switching over to these safer and equally effective alternatives.

natural moisturizing factors. One of the primary elements in keeping skin healthy is making sure the structure of the epidermis (outer layer of skin) is intact. That structure is defined and created by skin cells that are held together by the intercellular matrix. The intercellular matrix is the "glue" within the skin that keeps skin cells together, helps prevent individual skin cells from losing water, and creates the smooth, non-flaky appearance of skin. The components that do this are called natural moisturizing factors (NMFs). Lipids are the oil and fat components of skin that prevent evaporation and provide lubrication to the surface of skin. It is actually the intercellular matrix along with the skin's lipid content that gives skin a good deal of its surface texture and feel. When the lipid and NMF content of skin is reduced, we experience surface roughness, flaking, fine lines, and a tight, uncomfortable feeling (Source: Skin Research and Technology, August 2000, pages 128-134); moreover, the skin's healing process is impaired. NMFs and lipids make up an expansive group of ingredients that include ceramide, hyaluronic acid, cholesterol, fatty acids, triglycerides, phospholipids, glycosphingolipids, amino acids, linoleic acid, glycosaminoglycans, glycerin, mucopolysaccharide, and sodium PCA (pyrrolidone carboxylic acid). Mimicking the lipid content of skin ingredients are apricot oil, canola oil, coconut oil, corn oil, jojoba oil, jojoba wax, lanolin, lecithin, olive oil, safflower oil, sesame oil, shea butter, soybean oil, squalane, and sweet almond oil, which can all be extremely helpful for skin.

All of the skin's supporting NMFs and lipids are present in the intercellular structure of the epidermis, both between skin cells and in the lipid content on the surface of skin. When any of these ingredients are used in skin-care products, they appear to help stabilize and maintain this complex intercellular-skin matrix. Although none of these very good NMFs and lipids can permanently affect or change skin, they are great at temporarily keeping depleted skin from feeling dry and uncomfortable. More important, all of these ingredients, and many more, can help support the intercellular area of the skin by keeping it intact. This support helps prevent surface irritation from penetrating deeper into the skin, works to keep bacteria out, and aids the skin's immune/healing system.

natural concealers.  A conceler is a type of makeup used to cover pimples and spots made with natural components.

natural cosmetics.  Natural cosmetics are relatively safer and healthier options than any other range of products as they are made from natural substances. This would imply that the product is derived almost naturally and is relatively free from any artificial additives. Plant waxes, essential oils, barks of trees, spices and extracts from flowers would be good alternatives.

natural dye.  A dye made form natural sources, obtained from substances such as roots, bark, wood, berries, lichens, insects, shellfish and flowers.

natural lipstick.  Lipsticks are made of various oils, waxes, pigments and emollients. Beeswax is commonly used though other varieties are candelilla wax and carnauba wax. Lanolin, cocoa butter and mineral oil also form part of most lip colors. Manufacturers have begun offering brands with sunscreens, collagen, Vitamin E and Aloe Vera to protect the lips and keep them moist and soft.

natural mineral foundation.  Mineral foundations contain minerals that have been used for cosmetic purposes for thousands of years. Most of these minerals are used to prepare foundations to suit all skin types. These foundations are medicated and they can also be used to cover acne and pimples

natural shampoo.  Cleansing agent consisting in natural components, free of soaps or detergents, used for washing the hair.

Natural Skincare. A natural product is described as one that contains mostly or completely naturally derived ingredients. It also indicates that the product is free from, or contains minute amounts of artificial chemical additives. Natural skincare is formulated with products from plant waxes, plant oils, essential oils from flowers, barks and spices, as well as richly coloured mineral pigments.

neem extract or oil. From leaves of the neem tree; it has potential toxic effects, although it has also been shown to have antimicrobial properties (Sources: Life Sciences, January 2001, pages 1153-1160; Journal of Ethnopharmacology, August 2000, pages 377-382; Phytotherapy Research, February 1999, pages 81-83; and Mutation Research, June 1998, pages 247-258).

Nelumbo nucifera. See lotus seed extract.

neopentanate. Used in cosmetics as a thickening agent and emollient.

neopentyl glycol dicaprylate/dicaprate. Used as an emollient and thickening agent.

neptune kelp extract. See algae.

neroli. See orange blossom.

neroli oil. Fragrant plant oil; it can be a skin irritant and sensitizer.

nettle extract. May have anti-inflammatory properties (Source: Healthnotes Review of Complementary and Integrative Medicine,

niacin. See niacinamide.

niacinamide. Also called vitamin B3, niacin, and nicotinic acid. There are a handful of studies demonstrating that a 4% concentration of niacinamide applied topically in gel form can have effects similar to those of clindamycin, a prescription-only topical antibiotic. However, most of the research was performed by the company that makes this product (Papulex, 4% Niacinamide), and it can cause dryness and inflammation. Some existing animal studies and in vitro studies on human fibroblasts (cells that produce connective tissue such as collagen) have demonstrated that niacinamide may have a mitigating effect on skin tumors (Source: Nutrition and Cancer, 1997, volume 29, number 2, 157-162). Topical application of niacinamide has been shown to increase ceramide and free fatty acid levels in skin and to prevent skin from losing water content (Source: British Journal of Dermatology, September 2000, pages 524-531).

niaouli oil. Extracted from a plant related to melaleuca. It has properties similar to those of tea tree oil, making it a possible topical disinfectant. It is a weak antibacterial agent (Source: Pharmazie, June 1999, pages 460-463), but it can also be a potent skin irritant (Source: Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, See also tea tree oil.

nicotinamide. See niacinamide.

nicotinic acid. See niacinamide.

Nigella sativa seed extract. May have anti-inflammatory and immune-enhancing properties (Source: Journal of Ethnopharmacology, June 2001, pages 45-48). It can also be a skin sensitizer and there is little research showing it to have benefit for skin (Source: Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database,

nitrogen. Used as a propellant for products by the cosmetics industry; it can generate free-radical damage and cause cell death (Source: Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, April 2002, pages 1007-1019).

nitrosamines. Can be formed in cosmetics when amines (such as DEA, MEA, or TEA) are combined with a formaldehyde-releasing preservative (bronopol or quaternium-15, among others). Nitrosamines are known for their carcinogenic properties. There is controversy as to whether or not this poses a real problem for skin given the small concentrations that are used in cosmetics and the question of whether nitrosamines can even penetrate skin. See formaldehyde-releasing preservative.

nonacnegenic. Term used by the cosmetics industry to lead consumers to believe they are using a product that will not cause their skin to break out. However, "nonacnegenic" is not regulated in any manner by the FDA and, therefore, is used indiscriminately by cosmetics companies without any substantiation or proof of claim (Source:

noncomedogenic. Term meant to indicate that a product will not clog pores. This term is not regulated by the FDA or any other organization, so a cosmetics company can make this claim regardless of proof or substantiation of any kind (Source:

nonoxynols. Used as mild surfactants. See surfactant.

nordihydroguaiaretic acid. Component of some plants that has been shown to have anticancer properties for skin and may also protect the skin from sun damage (Sources: British Journal of Cancer, April 2002, pages 1188-1196; Molecular Carcinogenesis, June 2002, pages 102-111; and Biochemical Pharmacology, March 2002, pages 1165-1176).

nylon-12. Powder substance that is used as an absorbent and thickening agent.