Saturday, July 23, 2011

Safer Cosmetics for All

     Lately, I've been really getting involved with political movements to provide stricter regulations for bath, body, and beauty products. Personally, I'm a fan of small government with less power and little regulatory action. However, I believe in the availability of knowledge. Companies should not have the power to deliberately hide safety information from their customers.

     Here are some of my problems with the current cosmetic and bath and body industry:

     --> Words like "natural" are not federally defined.
     --> Toxic chemicals are allowed in products because of their small dosage. 
     --> There is little regulation on commercially marketed products.

     Where do I stand? Well, "natural" should mean derived directly from a natural, unprocessed ingredient without additives. Products should specify whether they are "organic" (meaning certified organic) or "contain organic ingredients." I also believe that no toxin is safe in any dose, and manufacturers should not be able to assume the customer is not coming into contact with other doses of similar toxins that could increase the total amount consumed. These are just a few examples of why I believe in natural, organic products.

     It is also why I believe in the freedom of knowledge. I'm saying that toxins of any form should not be allowed in products. Manufacturers must disclose all ingredients completely on the label. We make tobacco packs display a warning from the surgeon general, why not on bath and beauty products? People should ultimately have the choice of what to buy, but conning unwitting customers through the deliberate hiding of information is wrong.

     Learn more about the cosmetic industry (open this in new window):

     Now, I do not agree with the entire Safe Cosmetics Act proposed in the aforementioned video. I believe that it is a good starting point but too overly strict in some areas and vague in others. I support better regulation. However, I believe this bill would seriously inhibit the growth and progress of the handmade movement.

     What can you do?

     --> As a handmade bath and beauty artisan, label all your products (both online and on the label) with your ingredients! Take the step toward regulation through initiative!

     --> As a consumer, do your homework. Don't buy products that contain toxins, carcinogens, and harmful preservatives. Opt instead for pthlate, sulfide, and paraben free preservatives in your products or 100% natural or organic products.

     --> Support the handmade movement! Remember, though, you must buy responsibly. Purchase from sellers who disclose all ingredients before purchase.

     --> Vote to decline the Safe Cosmetics Act in favor of an amended bill written by cosmetic and bath and body experts rather than politicians and biased company leaders!

Both of these widgets will remain on the side bar of the blog for your reference!


  1. I have noticed in the drug store that everything that says natural usually starts off it's ingredient list with a bunch of chemicals that I have no idea what they are.

  2. great article. I have a hard time buying cosmetics for this very reason. I just don't know what to buy. I have found some really good locally made lotions and soaps, but makeup is the most difficult part for me to find.

  3. Thanks for commenting SleightGirl and Lazy Mondays! I will actually be following this post up in the future with one meant to help translate labels: what ingredients are good for you and which are harmful.

    Glad you stopped by!

  4. I have a really hard with hair products, mostly hair spray. Most of the them (even salon brands) make my scalp itch and the back of my neck turns bright red. So I got a haircut that doesn't need spray!

  5. Retro- Perfect solution! Why fight what isn't working? Just find a solution that works :) Now I'm uber curious about your haircut!

  6. Great post, I enjoyed it. Thank you for educating me on many things. I am into "natural" and find that it is tough to find purity in most things in the stores these days. I love handmade soap ever since a friend send me some many years ago:):)

  7. Fantastic post. Thank you for calling attention to the flaws in the SCA.

  8. It's really shocking to know how little regulation there is when it comes to the cosmetics industry. It seems to have simply fallen through the cracks, but I cannot believe that it's remained there for so many years! I had no idea about the issues you mention with the Safe Cosmetics Act, though. I don't think industry people should ever be in charge of regulating themselves or writing bills!

  9. Kala- I'm hoping legislation in the coming years will define words like "natural." It doesn't seem right to purposefully deceive customers and have government regulation virtually permit it. However, I'm glad your search for truly natural products led you to handmade soap! :)

    Little Batch- Thanks for stopping by!

    Ohkeeka- Self-regulation only benefits one entity, and that entity is obviously not the customer! Glad you were enlightened by the post. Thanks for stopping in!


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