Greenwashing: What You Need to Know
Companies will claim green practices from packaging to product ingredients. It is important to look at the brand as a whole; while the packaging might be eco-friendly, the ingredients may be far from it containing toxins like synthetic fragrances, parabens, PEGs, oxybenzone, synthetic dyes, SLS (sodium laureth sulfate), and many more.
Some companies may have non-toxic ingredients but their packaging is not eco-friendly and continues to contribute to the environmental pollution that is ruining our planet.
Just when you think you have covered all the earth-friendly basis you learn a brand does not support sustainable practices that help improve millions of lives and protect land and waterways that help to source the ingredients used and uplift the communities that work hard to provide us with quality goods.
In today’s world we have so many resources at our finger tips it’s not hard to find out helpful information BUT it can be hard to decipher what is the truth. When it comes to skin care be skeptical and stay curious. Read product labels and google ingredients you are unsure of. Our rule of thumb is if you can’t pronounce it, you probably shouldn’t use it.
Companies that are passionate and true to green practices will be knowledgeable and willing to share, so engage with them on social media, their website, or via email and ask questions about their green practices; where they source their ingredients or packaging from.
Find out who owns the company. There are many companies that have been bought by large corporations or are a subsidiary of a large company marketed to look like a small local business. It’s important to understand where they source their ingredients from and are they harmful. Burt’s Bees was once a locally sourced and owned company that made quality lip balm. They are now owned by Clorox. Their ingredients now include lanolin, soy bean, and canola oil. Here are a few red flag that come to my mind; 1) is the lanolin cruelty free? Where do they source it from and what are the practices to ensure no sheep are harmed. 2) Are the soy bean and canola oils non-GMO? Where are they sourced from and are they fair trade?
A few known companies that greenwash:
Alba Botanica, Arbonne, Aveda, Aveeno, Babyganics, Banana Boat Baby, Bare Minerals, BioClarity, The Body Shop, Burt's Bees, Clairol Hair Food, Covergirl, Natureluxe, Herbal Essences, JASON, Johnson's Natural, Joise Maran, Kiss My Face, Lush Cosmetics, Monat, Moroccan Oil, Mustela, Neutrogena Pure & Free, Nivea Pure & Natural, OGX (Organix), Origins, Pixi, Raw Sugar Living, Seventh Generation, Simple, St. Ives, SunBurn, Tarte Cosmetics, Yes To
Beware of skin care companies that greenwash! We do not greenwash or support this misleading practice. Check out our website to view our Promise to You and Always lists.
Tara Raj, CPC, ACC, CNWC
Co-Owner & Creator of Earth’s Farmacy
Member of the Greener Life Club
Earth’s gift to you!
What you put on your body is just as important as what you put in it!