Tag Archives: claims

Cosmetics; true claims or publicity?

Though the skin acts as a barrier to the “outside world”, a lot of the stuff we put on it will pass through and enter the bloodstream, influencing every cell of your body. In this day of enlightenment with information and knowledge, literally at your fingertips, more and more people are growing aware of the importance of what you put on, and in, your body. Later years there has been a great wave of new awareness of “the bad stuff”; chemicals, artificial flavorings, synthetic perfumes and manipulated foods. People stay clear of that which they know to be bad and try to make informed choices, especially when it comes to food. BUT when it comes to skin care, only the tip of the ice-berg has been scraped.

Catchy, but is it true?

Catchy, but is it true?

The cosmetic market is one of the largest in the world, turning over more money than we can even imagine and there have been almost no regulations whatsoever. Over the past few years new bodies of regulation have been formed and guide-lines are being set up. This is all good and well, but in reality it means nothing because the only regulations we are seeing are about certain (a very small percent) ingredients which have shown to be harmful to human health. There are still no guidelines in place about what you are allowed to say in terms of publicity. A producer can say anything he likes, even if it is a blatant lie. (see earlier post)

As a producer and manufacturer of botanical organic products, I have spent much time doing research among people and shops; How informed are people and what do they ask for? How informed are the staff in cosmetic sections? I have spent hours browsing cosmetic departments in many different countries and the picture is the same everywhere…The answer is; NOTHING! More people than ever are asking for “clean” cosmetics; no chemicals, no animal-testing, organic and natural. They trust the staff in the shop to know these things and help them, but the staff only knows that which they have been told when trained to sell specific brands. This is no knowledge at all, it is publicity. Staff as well as the common person don’t know how to read inci-list (ingredients) nor do they know what the words mean. On top of that the inci-list is printed on some obscure part of the packaging that you have to search for and in such tiny letters that I need both my glasses and a magnifying glass to read it. (see this post on inci) If you buy cosmetics over the internet, the inci is not always listed on the site, only on the physical product.

Clinically? I doubt it. Spread on that botox, no more shots...Seriously?

Clinically? I doubt it. Spread on that botox, no more shots…Seriously?

Animal testing is a huge arena and the world is beginning to understand the impact such testing has on millions, billions of animals. Most people are horrified and would never want to use any product that has been tested on animals. The majority of products on the market today claim that they have not been tested on animals which is probably true. BUT many of the different ingredients have been tested on animals, even though the finished product hasn’t been tested. Claims on skin care are seldom true, they are publicity.

With this I will leave you to inform yourself; what do you actually need for your personal hygiene and cosmetics? What is acceptable to you? If you want to know more and inform yourself so that you can make better choices, there are loads of sites on the internet where you can find this information very easily, I have put a few links on the right under “information & resources”. When you go shopping, ask questions and demand informed answers.

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SKIN CARE revealed

I know I have written about this earlier but I find I need to bring it up again, seeing as there are so many questions around the whole thing. For earlier posts, check under tags: product information and skin-care.

Truths about skin care products:

  • CLAIMS: There are no rules or regulations whatsoever around what you may say about skin care, this is the Wild West. You can claim anything you want as a producer and you don’t even have to prove it. Take the word hypo-allergenic; this means that if your skin is extremely sensitive or you suffer from allergies, this is the product to use. The claim hypo-allergenic makes you believe that it is widely tested and formulated for any sensitivities…WRONG. It is just a product like all others, but it sounds good. So you’re in the shit, or rather your skin is. The only way you can determine if a product will work for you is by reading the INCI-list.
  • INCI-list: This is the only regulation that exists around skin-care, you have to list all the ingredients in order of amount, largest amount is at the top. Great thing, now you can check for the stuff you are sensitive to. The ingredients are listed with chemical and botanical names to be internationally viable. This definitely makes sense, but most people don’t understand what they are reading. Do you know what the botanical name of shea-butter is? If you want to know what is in your creme, google it. There is massive information on the internet.
  • BIO or ORGANIC: Sounds good when it is stamped on a product, now you get the “real” thing, or do you? All it takes is one organic ingredient in the formula and you can get BIO-certification. There are no specific rules around this, each certifying body (and there are quite a few) can decide as they like. Or there might be ingredients chemically derived from botanical or organic sources, this will count for BIO as well.
  • REGISTRATION: Each skin care product must be registered, at a fee of course, before it can be put on the market. Small producers of “clean” skin care most often don’t have the economy for this, so they are effectively shut out from the market-place leaving only the big players such as L’Oreal, Nivea, Dove.
  • €€€: It’s all about the money; by keeping production costs down, there is a big return in money on every sale. Natural & organic substances are expensive and would radically minimize the monetary gain on products, so cheap ingredients are used instead, even in very expensive products. Don’t be fooled…An expensive product in a beautiful package does not mean it is necessarily any good.

…And so on and so forth. Get the picture?