Frequently Asked Questions
What do you mean by “all natural” skin care?
At Smith Farms we create products using ingredients that are found in nature, e.g. butter from the karite (shea) nut, rosewater from rose petals, juice from the aloe vera plant and oil from almonds. Sometimes our ingredients are not naturally occurring in nature, but in these cases we make sure they are naturally derived, using organic principles. A good example of this is our emulsifier called Sugarmulse, which is cetearyl alcohol and cetearyl glucoside and is derived from plant sugars and is Ecocert certified organic.
Can I use your products if I have eczema/psoriasis/rosacea/dermatitis/sensitive skin?
Our line of products are completely natural and contain no harsh or irritating ingredients, such as sulphates (the leading cause of contact dermatitis) and synthetic fragrances that are found in traditional skin care products. This makes them ideal for individuals with sensitive skin.
What does the organic percentage on the label of your products mean?
This is calculated by taking the formulation (not including water or salt) and adding up the percentages of the ingredients that are certified organic. In the ingredients list on our product labels we indicate with an asterisk (*) those that are certified organic.
How long will my products last after I buy them?
You should try to use your products within 6 months, keeping them out of direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. Our products are stable but not indestructible; for instance, leaving them in a hot or freezing car is not the best thing for them! Certain products, like our whipped body butter are more sensitive, and care should be taken that they aren’t left in an overly warm spot as the butters will melt and break the emulsion.
How do you preserve your products?
We very proudly use a preservative system created by a company here in Quebec. It is called Biosecur, and it is derived from citrus fruit. It is an organic preservative and disinfectant that replaces parabens and quaternary ammonium compounds in products.Find it on our labels under it’s INCI name: “Citrus medica limonum”. It is both USDA and Ecocert certified organic. Visit their web site for more information.
What is Cetearyl Alcohol? Isn’t alcohol drying?
Cetearyl alcohol is not really an alcohol (such as rubbing alcohol) which would definitely dry the skin. It is an emulsifying wax, made by combining fatty alcohols from vegetable sources. Emulsifiers are what we use to keep the oil and water components bound together as a smooth lotion. The one we’ve chosen to use is called Sugarmulse and is derived from plant sugars. The INCI name for Sugarmulse is Cetearyl alcohol and Cetearyl glucoside.For more information on Sugarmulse visit the Herbarie web site.
Why are some of the names on your ingredients list unrecognizable?
Ingredient list must conform to the INCI standards of identification. See below for INCI explanation.
What does INCI mean?
The International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients, abbreviated INCI, is a system of names for waxes, oils, pigments, chemicals, and other ingredients of soaps, cosmetics, and the like. It is based on scientific names, and other Latin and English words.
How can I check for myself that all the ingredients you use are safe?
A great resource that anyone can use is the Skin Deep cosmetic safety database.
Is all your product packaging recyclable?
We prioritize packaging that is made from recycled materials, is recyclable or biodegradable and/ or can be reused. We like to use aluminum (hand lotion, body lotion) as it is infinitely recyclable. Glass is another favourite of ours and we use it for our body oil. In some cases we haven’t found a replacement for plastic, as in our lip balm tubes, but at least they are recyclable (Code 5). We make sure our labels are made of the same material (polypropelene) so that it can be easily recycled once at the facility. In the gift sets our soap is packaged in unbleached cotton muslin bags, which are both reusable and biodegradable.
What about your packing and shipping packaging?
We ship most of our orders in cardboard boxes, which are made up of partially recycled content and are recyclable. To pack the products and keep them protected, we use shredded white paper that we collect from shredding machines in local offices; it can be dumped straight into your recycling bin with the rest of your papers. We also reuse wherever possible; small boxes that we’ve received shipments in and bubble wrap. If you find your products wrapped in plastic bubble wrap- it’s being reused! Our brown kraft shopping bags are 25-30% recycled content and are recyclable.
How much of your raw materials and packaging supplies are sourced locally?
We try to source as much as we can locally, but unfortunately in the case of our raw materials- the bulk of them come from other parts of the world. We use a lot of nut butters and oils (shea, cocoa, almond, jojoba) which don’t grow in our Canadian climate. What we can get locally (beeswax, honey and goat's milk), we do. As for our packaging, we get our aluminum tubes that we use for hand lotion from a company in Hawkesbury, Ontario. The rest of our packaging we get from the US (New Jersey) where we’ve found suppliers that can accommodate our low minimums. All our print materials and labels are done by Montreal printers.
Where are your products manufactured?
All our products are manufactured and packaged by Julia at our facility on our family farm in St. Polycarpe, Quebec, Canada.
Are all of your products vegan?
Some are (hand lotion, body oil), but many of our products contain beeswax and our goat’s milk soap contains, of course, goat’s milk. Creating a completely vegan line is something we would like to do, down the line a bit.
Do you have a baby care line?
Not yet, but it’s in the pipeline!
Are your products safe for use on my baby or children?
Because our products are 100% natural and contain none of the harsh or irritating ingredients found in most traditional products, including baby products, we encourage you to use them on your children or newborn.
Do you test on animals or use ingredients that were tested on animals?
Never! We reserve the privilege for all our friends and family, and Becky’s children ;) The cats just get hugs and food.
What if I don't like what I get?
Let us know! We’re always learning, so all feedback positive and negative helps us improve. Tell us what the problem is, and we’ll work to resolve it the best way for you.
Can I place an order and have it shipped to someone else?
Certainly! When checking out, you will be asked for a shipping address where you can fill in the details. If you are sending a gift and don't want an invoice included in the box just make a note for us in the comments section. We can even put everything in a gift bag with ribbon and include a to/from card card.
How do I track my order?
As soon as we ship your order you will receive a notification that will include a tracking link from Canada Post.