Our skin—we love to pamper it, make it look better, and enhance it with color. The skin is our body’s largest organ and an amazing 60 percent of what we put on it ends up INSIDE our bodies in our bloodstream; therefore, we need to make sure that we aren’t harming our skin and bodies by using cosmetics with harmful, carcinogenic ingredients. Green beauty products are designed to provide consumers like us with safe, pure, natural, and organic alternatives to the chemicals found in traditional, non-organic cosmetics. In order to identify a green beauty product, we can look for these indicators on the label.
USDA Organic Certification
The USDA has a National Organic program that defines and certifies ingredients as being either “100% Organic,” “Organic” (more than 95% of the food ingredients are organically produced), “Made with Organic Ingredients” (more than 70% of the food ingredients are organically produced), or “Organic Ingredients” (less than 70% of the food ingredients are organically produced).
Note that the USDA certifies food ingredients like avocado, cinnamon, and honey, but it doesn’t regulate essential oils and plant derived ingredients.
Paraben and Phlatate Free Label
Parabens are used as anti-bacterial and anti-fungal preservatives in cosmetics, and because of their ability to mimic estrogen, a key hormone known to play a role in the development of breast cancer, some scientists think parabens in underarm deodorants and cosmetics may be linked to breast cancer.
Phlatates are plasticizers used in nail polish (to reduce cracking) and hair spray (to make a flexible film on hair). Research suggests that exposure to phthalates may lead to endocrine disruption, which may in turn lead to breast cancer.
Whole Foods Premium Body Care Seal
The Body Care seal on products at Whole Foods stores indicates that the ingredients are gentle, safe, and free from harsh chemicals, and synthetic fragrances and dyes.
IOS Natural & Organic Cosmetic Certification
Certech Registration, Inc. certifies cosmetic products as being natural and organic if all of the product’s food ingredients are organic and the cosmetics manufacturer follows eco-friendly guidelines, including the use of fair trade and recycled materials.