Don’t be Fooled by Natural Claims



The ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ skin care industry is exploding.  US sales are set to reach 16 billion dollars a year by 2020.  Unfortunately, truth in labelling has not kept pace.  The fact remains as it always has, few companies produce products that are truly 100 percent natural.  Claims of natural are often bold, blatant lies.  I’m offended by this and you should be too.  Here’s one example, from a popular line.

Their Claim:

100% Natural & Non-Toxic Ingredients 100% of the time

….We are committed to using natural and nontoxic ingredients for health and for the results they deliver, not so that we can advertise ourselves as “green” for marketing purposes.


The Reality:


A quick scan of the ingredient list for one of their facial care formulas told a different story.  It was looking OK until I got toward the bottom:

….Sambucus Nigra Fruit Extract, Menyanthes rifoliate (Buckbean) Flower Extract, Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Sorbitan Olivate, Sclerotium gum, Cetyl Palmitate, Sorbitan Palmitate, Propanediol, Sodium Phytate, Superoxide Dismutase, Soybean Peroxidase, Mica, Iron Oxide (C.I. 77891, C.I. 77491), Aroma**, Citral, Citronellol, Eugenol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool


Among other suspect ingredients, this one really jumps out at me:  Propanediol.


As a cosmetic chemist I can tell you this.  1,2 Propanediol is another name for propylene glycol. It’s a synthetic chemical obtained from the hydration of propylene oxide, which is derived from petroleum products.  There is no natural source for this chemical.


The Facts:

They claim they are 100 percent natural and synthetic free. They say they are not advertising themselves as green for marketing purposes.   So, what then, are they doing?




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