November 04, 2016

Misleading "Green Beauty" Brands

No doubt you have heard of the term "Green Washing", making a product or brand seem like it is eco-conscious or good for the body when it actually is not. That's what today's topic is all about---brands that intentionally market their products to make the consumer believe they are non-toxic or "natural", when they're not.

Here are some brands I have come across that many people consider to be "Green Beauty" brands, but that I consider still toxic or misleading.

Let's get started!

Today tarte is a leader in healthy, eco-chic beauty, offering cruelty-free cosmetics infused with skinvigorating™ ingredients like superfruit and plant extracts, vitamins, minerals, essential oils and other naturally-derived ingredients. But it's not just about what's in our powerful formulas; it's what's not in them that really sets us apart! All of our products are formulated without parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate, triclosan, synthetic fragrances and gluten, just to name a few. 

If you have not checked out "Why Tarte is NOT Natural" I will leave a link HERE. I go a little more in-depth there about why they're such a Green Washed brand.

Basically, their claim to be "High Performance Naturals" is nothing but a hoax. While I'm happy they formulate their products without parabens and the other ingredients mentioned above, there is a mile long list of ingredients they do still use that are still toxic to the body.

Just look at what's in their 12 Hour Amazonian Clay blushes...

 Talc, mica, polyethylene, zinc stearate, tricaprylin, caprylic/capric triglyceride, cera alba/beeswax/cire d’abeille, ascorbyl palmitate, chlorphenesin, kaolin, lanolin, laureth-4, PEG-150 distearate, polysorbate 20, potassium sorbate, tetrasodium EDTA, tocopherol. (+/-): Orange 4 Lake (CI 15510), red 6 (CI 15850), red 7 lake (CI 15850), red 28 lake (CI 45410), ultramarines (CI 77007), bismuth oxychloride (CI 77163), iron oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), manganese violet (CI 77742), titanium dioxide (CI 77891).

Polyethylene, aka PLASTIC, is not going anywhere near my bloodstream thank you very much.

From our 100% natural essential oils to our potent plant actives, we unleash each ingredient’s unique power using our advanced science and earth-friendly practices....Our products are purified and tested multiple times for safety and performance. This guarantees every Origins product is worthy of your trust....Our plant ingredients come from renewable resources that ensure we help protect our earth and the environment.

Let me start off my by sharing my biggest red flag about Origins, they are owned by Estee Lauder and while they claim to not test their products on animals, they do in fact sell their products in China, so they are required by law to test on animals, so they are not Cruelty-Free.

Let's check out their popular Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash.

Water, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Water, Myristic Acid, Glycerin, Behenic Acid, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Palmitic Acid, Potassium Hydroxide, Lauric Acid, Stearic Acid, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil *, Mentha Viridis (Spearmint) Leaf Oil*, Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil*, Lavandula Hybrida Oil*, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil*, Styrax Benzoin Gum, Linalool, Peg-3 Distearate, Tourmaline, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polyquaternium-7, Butylene Glycol, Disodium Edta, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone.

While there are lots of skin beneficial ingredients here, Methylisothiazolinone and Cetearyl Alcohol are not one of them. Low grade alcohol dries out the skin, and Methylisothiazolinone is an irritant that can lead to dandruff, scalp irritations, eczema and more.

Many of their cosmetics contain Phenoxyethanol, a possible neurotoxin that may depress the Central Nervous System, and Talc, which can be carcinogenic with links to ovarian cancer when in nano-particle form.

Nice try Estee Lauder, I'm not buying your "Natural" brand.

Our goal is to leave skin and hair in better condition than we found it. This includes selecting effective natural ingredients, as well as making our products free of gluten, parabens, talc, artificial colors, synthetic fragrances, SLS, and phthalates. We NEVER conduct animal testing, and never will, nor do we ask others to do so.

We are committed to sustainability and utilize wind power, soy inks, packaging from recycled materials and packaging that is recyclable.

This one might be slightly controversial, as Mineral Fusion is sold at numerous Health and Natural Stores such as Whole Foods.

However, despite being formulated without many harmful ingredients, I still see Phenoxyethanol in their list of ingredients for many of their products. Example, their blushes.

Mica, Zinc Stearate, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Titanium Dioxide, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Ascorbyl Palmitate (Vitamin C), Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Aspalathus Linearis (Rooibos Red Tea) Leaf Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Extract, Laminaria Ochroleuca (Sea Kelp) Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Extract, Lauroyl Lysine, Sambucus Nigra Fruit (Elderberry), Phenoxyethanol. MAY CONTAIN (+/-): Iron Oxides, Carmine, Ultramarine, Manganese Violet.

While this may not be the worst offender on the list, and I love their ethics as a brand, they need to clean up their ingredients just a bit and then I would be comfortable using their products.

My Vegan side would also be over the moon with joy if they stopped using Carmine as well!


Oh The Body Shop, with it's adorable packaging and exotic fragrances, I admit, if the ingredients were as top notch as their business practices, I would purchase from them.

Sadly, this is what is in their most popular product, the Shea Body Butter....

Water, Shea Butter (Butyrospermum Parkii), Cocoa (Theobroma Cacao) Butter, Cyclomethicone, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Babassu (Orbignya Oleifera) Oil, Beeswax, Lanolin Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Benzyl Alcohol, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Caramel, F D & C Yellow No 5.


Oh where to begin, they should have stopped after Cocoa Butter. I think I'll need to list this out because the number of toxic ingredients in this is too long for one paragraph.

Phenoxyethanol- possible neurotoxin
Fragrance- hormone disruptor
Methylparaben/Propylparaben- distrupts our natural hormones, links to breast cancer

And as a Vegan, using Lanolin Alcohol as an ingredient is repulsive. It is a derivative of Lanolin, AKA the fat from wool shearing....SHEEP!  Nope.

I will avoiding these brands and others until they decided to change their ingredients to less toxic and harmful options. I have one body and I'm not about to soak it in toxic chemicals every day.

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