Back to Hope LLC is a registered Benefit Corporation, and we use recycled and compostable packaging and labels, shipping materials and the like. Ingredients are sourced carefully, and are sustainably grown or harvested, fair-trade, non-GMO and organic whenever possible. It’s important for us to find a balance between quality ingredients and affordability, which is the only reason we don’t use exclusively organic ingredients (the cost is often several times higher). Learn more about our suppliers.
As far as ingredients go, our products are always gluten-free and egg-free, and usually vegan and kosher. We make an effort to limit allergens in general, as we know what it’s like to have crazy sensitive skin and weird allergies! Unless stated otherwise, all the ingredients listed here are vegan, Kosher, non-GMO, chemical-free, and gluten-free. Here are some of our more commonly-used ingredients:
Coconut Oil – Naturally organic, virgin, unrefined, fair-trade. Moisturizing and softening for skin and hair, coconut oil also has anti-microbial and anti-bacterial properties, and is high in natural fatty acids. Excellent at penetrating skin without feeling greasy. Provides intense moisture to hair and helps repair damage. We typically use this as a substantial portion of the base in our soaps.
Rice Bran Oil – Rich in vitamins E and B, squalene, fatty acids, and antioxidants, it is a moisturizing, skin-soothing and protecting oil that is often used in anti-aging products. Excellent for acne-prone skin.
Grapeseed Oil – Lightweight and astringent, often used in massage oils and skincare formulations as it is considered non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic. Skin-toning and non-comodegenic, good for oily, acne-prone, damaged, and sensitive skin. Rich in essential fatty acids that are excellent for acne-prone and sensitive skin – alpha-linolenic acid, oleic acid, palmitic acid, palmitoleic acid, and stearic acid. This is the base for most of our herbally-infused oils.
Castor Oil – Studies have shown that salves and ointments made with castor oil provide a reduction in pain and inflammation. Additionally, it is antibacterial and antimicrobial. Used in soap, it adds lather and increased moisture and healing properties, and it acts as a protective barrier in skin products. Excellent for hair.
Shea Butter – Fair Trade, 100% handmade direct from the farmers in Ghana. Super moisturizing, rich in vitamins and fatty acids. Typically less allergenic than cocoa butter. While technically a nut, this does not generally trigger allergies in nut-sensitive people.
Hemp Oil – High in Omega fatty acids, vitamin E, and proteins, it is similar to the skin’s natural lipids and helps replenish and improve the skin’s moisture barrier. Also helps reduce visible signs of aging.
Apricot Kernel Oil – Very nourishing moisturizing; rich in vitamin A (retinol), E, K, and antioxidants, it is an excellent replacement for almond oil (which we try to avoid, because nut allergies). Ideal for increased moisture and damage repair in skin and hair products, and specifically for skin conditions such as eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis. Helps strengthen weak hair and promotes a healthy scalp. Good for all skin types.
Avocado Oil – Enriching and high in protein and vitamins A, B1, B2, D, E, potassium, lecithin, and so much more. Nourishing and moisturizing without being greasy, it can also help relieve inflammation associated with eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Studies have shown that it promotes collagen synthesis and supports healing. Can also help relieve a dry, flaky scalp.
Sweet Almond Oil – Known for its ability to soften and re-condition skin, it is considered extremely nourishing. High in proteins and Vitamin D.
Jojoba Oil – Technically a liquid wax, it closely resembles the sebum of the skin and is rich in Vitamin E. Fantastic for skin care, as it is non-comedogenic and emollient.
Neem Oil – Excellent as a natural preservative and skin care additive, neem has been used for hundreds of years for skincare, medicine, and to help control pests and diseases. It is known to be anti-septic, anti-fungal, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-histamine, and is rich in fatty acids. Research has shown it to be effective in helping treat acne, psoriasis, eczema, ringworm and even warts! It also helps has anti-aging effects and even boosts collagen and promotes wound healing.
Vegetable Glycerin – used in tinctures, lotions, body scrubs, facial products, and hand sanitizer.
Various Clays – Different clays have different mineral profiles, but in general, they help absorb oils and remove impurities. Also used as a scent fixative for essential oils.
Essential Oils – We never use solvent-extracted oils, and source organic or ECOCERT-verified whenever possible. All EO’s we purchase are rigorously tested by the supplier for purity and potency, and are certified non-GMO and pesticide-free.
Herbs and Spices – Our suppliers source most of their botanicals directly from farmers and growers, and quality standards are rigorous. We grow and wildcraft some of the herbs ourselves as well, depending on availability, and we are working to form partnerships with local sustainable growers.
Fragrance Oils – We do occasionally use fragrance oils, as some scents are simply not possible with essential oils or are prohibitively expensive. As an example, a single bar of soap made with true Rose Absolute would have to sell for about $20! The oils we purchase are from trusted suppliers, and are carefully tested for quality. They are cruelty-free, phthalate-free, paraben-free, preservative-free, and made from a combination of essential oils and synthetic ingredients.