How To Read A Label
This seems like a simple task but there's a difference between reading a label and understanding what it means.
Take our label for example:
All food and cosmetic labels are required to list ingredients from highest weight to lowest. This means the first ingredient listed is the majority of the product while the last ingredient could be less than 1%. Organic Alcohol Denat. (meaning Denatured) is the base of our perfume and acts as an antimicrobial agent, anti-foaming agent and a solvent (combining agent). Proprietary Blend of Botanical Aromatics is our mix of essential oils to give the perfume its scent. Water (Aqua), is...well, do I need to explain?
Proprietary means it is a secret blend that only we (the company) know. This prevents competitors from stealing our exact formula and recreating it. This does, however, allow other companies to list the word "Fragrance" and hide a number of chemicals within that ingredient. We list all of the essential oils used in our blends on our Ingredients page. No hidden ingredients here!
When it comes to reading a label, words you can pronounce are always good, but don't let those intimidating chemical words scare you. Most natural ingredients must be listed as their chemical names. If you are unsure about a specific ingredient, do some research to find out the truth. There are great resources like the EWG and Safecosmetics.org to help you understand ingredients.
What to stay away from:
Parabens: Preservatives that are known to cause hormone disruption, certain types of cancer (when applied in high doses), and developmental and reproductive toxicity.
Ethylparaben, butylparaben, methylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, other ingredients ending in –paraben.
Phthalates: Pronounced like "Thalates," these chemicals are used to make products more adaptable and last longer. They also disrupt the reproductive and endocrine systems.
Phthalate, DEP, DBP, DEHP and fragrance.
Sulfates: Cleansers that are irritating to skin.
SLS and SLES
Fragrance: Adds a scent to the product. Can have hidden chemicals and toxins which can have many side affects. All natural or 100% natural is the best option.
For a list of do-not use ingredients for specific products visit Safe Cosmetics or to check out your current products ThinkDirty. If you are unsure of a certain ingredient do some research to find out the truth!