I had something happen yesterday that made me really glad I started my Safe Product Movement at the beginning of this year. If I hadn't, I might not know what I now know.... and would have just trusted what the fancy packaging was telling me on my new gift. But I knew better. When you know better, you do better.
As a blogger, I sometimes get things sent to me to try. Yesterday I got a package in the mail and at first glance it looked great. It was a skin care product. I won't mention the brand as that's not the point. I'm not trying to interfere with their business. It was a brand I'd never heard of before.
Here's what I noticed at first glance.
- It looked high end like it was something that could be sold in a dermatologist's office.
- It said all of these words on the containers: "Natural", "Paraben Free", "Cruelty Free", "Vegan". "GMO Free", "Gluten Free", "trusted", and "vitamin rich".
Sounds good, right?
Well, the reason I thought it was important to share this information with you is because I want to show you what was revealed when I put this product into the Healthy Living App by the EWG (Environmental Working Group). If you're unfamiliar with this tool, it's a great resource for double checking the products in your home. It gives products a score of 1-10. 1 being the safest, and 10 being the most toxic. Here's a screen shot of the result...
Something to note about the Healthy Living App is that while it is a great resource, it is not perfect as it does not have every product in it's database...yet. When a product is not in the database it's usually because the company will not disclose what's in their product. Why? Because it's completely legal for them not to. The personal care industry is essentially unregulated.
Words like "natural" and "organic" mean absolutely nothing in the beauty industry. I'm not saying they all mean nothing, because there are absolutely wonderful, safe companies out there. I'm just saying you cannot trust that it means something. You have to dive a little deeper if you don't know it's a company that's trustworthy. Pretty messed up, isn't it?
It made me angry yesterday after seeing these results. Why? Because the average person would choose this product. The average person would not think this product could possibly cause allergies, cancer, or reproductive harm. The average person doesn't know that companies don't have to tell us the truth. The average person would actually think they were doing something good for their health! We deserve better, don't we?
I used to think if a product made it to store shelves, it was at least somewhat safe. Some years ago, I started to hear about the big offenders, like parabens and phthalates and started to avoid those ingredients...but what about the thousands and thousands of other toxic chemicals that are on the market today? The truth is that most of them have never even been tested for human or environmental safety. Of the ones that have, many contain known carcinogens, allergens, and hormone disrupters. Yet they are still widely used today.
Here are some facts to consider:
- 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.
- A woman uses approximately 12 products a day, which can equate to over 100 different chemicals.
- 80% of ingredients in our personal care products have never been assessed for human safety.
- Today, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, 40 years ago it was 1 in 20.
- Of the women diagnosed with breast cancer today, 90% do not have a mutation in the BRCA gene, the gene most commonly associated with breast cancer.
- The European Union bans/restricts nearly 1,400 toxic chemicals from the market, while the United States only bans 30.
- There has not been a federal law passed governing the personal care industry since 1938.
So why do I know about this and why do I care about spreading this important information? Because I decided to link arms with other women who are making a difference. I joined Beautycounter's mission of getting safer products into the hands of everyone. I fell in love with this company because they are an education first, products second company. As long as we can help people make a safer choice, we've done our job. Plus I get to share safe skincare, body care, face oils, a kids line, sunscreen and a baby line! Check out all of our products here!
I have made my life so much simpler by just using Beautycounter skincare and make up. There's no other company in the industry that's delivering on both performance and safety to the extent that we are. I don't have time to scrutinize every ingredient on my products, especially if I can't even trust it. I also understand as women....we want products that perform as well or better than our department store brands.
Beautycounter has what's called a Never List™ which means that when formulating their products, they prohibit the use of over 1,500 harmful of questionable ingredients. I know that this company is completely transparent and discloses every single ingredient for safety. What's more? They have an entire public policy arm dedicated to pushing for more health protective laws. It's completely simplified my life...and lets me share this important mission with others so they can make a healthier choice. We vote with our dollars, so you can make a difference too just by becoming a customer! Want to help us even more my sharing our mission? Join us!
I encourage you to download the Healthy Living App by the EWG today and start scanning your products! You may be surprised. You don't need to throw everything out the window at once. I understand that can be expensive. What I recommend to people is to replace things slowly, over time as you run out of items. Get rid of your worst offenders that are most toxic first. Replace items that sit on your skin the longest like lotions and foundation. It's a process, but it's worth it. Don't forget all your family members too like your husband and your kids. Your teen girls that are starting to wear makeup....start teaching them now what to look for. Just move in a healthier direction.
Want to know what else you can do to detoxify your whole home? Download my FREE 15 Tips to Detoxify Your Home. Sign up here and I'll send it to you straight away....right to your inbox. Some things on the list might even surprise you!
Here's to starting the New Year off right!