Making sure your skincare routine is good for you and the planet.
Almost 20 years ago, Sally Larsen began a health journey that involved beginning to “eat clean,” a phrase that’s become a buzzword in the last few years. Sally worked with a nutritionist to remove the inorganic ingredients from her diet. To thank her for her help, Sally gifted the nutritionist with some homemade skincare products. The nutritionist’s response? “Now that you’ve cleaned up your food, it’s time to clean up your skincare routine.”
This started Sally on the path towards healthy, natural skincare products. Many of Sally B’s products are verified by the Environmental Working Group, one of the highest certifications for organic products available. We take pride in doing our best to provide you with organic skincare and makeup products that are as healthy as they can be for your body’s largest organ – your skin!
Of the approximately 12,000 ingredients available to a cosmetic formulator, the European Union (EU) has banned over 1,300. Their regulatory bodies have been hard at work protecting their population for years. The United States has only banned 11! This is even more reason to buy skincare and makeup from a reputable source that does deep research before putting products on the market, like we do.
So, here’s a short list of absolute No-No’s that will NEVER be in Sally B’s products.
Parabens (methylparaben, isobutylparaben, propylparaben)
Parabens have been used as preservatives since the 1920s to prevent growth of bacteria and mold in facial cleansers, body washes, lotions, antiperspirant and foundation. Parabens have been linked to endocrine disruption and they compete with estrogen for sites to attach throughout the body, thereby potentially affecting hormonal balance. Still, you will see them in many products.
This preservative is one you’re likely to see more and more of – even on a product touted as safe. Phenoxyethanol became widely used after parabens were discovered to be toxic. Even the manufacturer of this preservative warns that it is toxic to kidneys, liver and nervous system. Even though some research shows this ingredient can be safe in low percentages, we take no chances and don’t use it. Read this blog on our website to learn about the safe and effective preservative we are adding to our products, JakabixNP.
Fragrance or parfum is an umbrella term for sometimes hundreds of ingredients that make up a particular fragrance, none of which is required by law to be listed. MADE SAFE, a nonprofit organization that tests and certifies nontoxic products, notes that “companies are legally allowed to keep individual fragrance ingredients secret because they’re deemed ‘confidential business information’ or a ‘trade secret.’” Many of the ingredients used to maintain the scent and color of perfume, lip balm, and nail polish include phthalates, which have been banned in the EU and in children’s toys in California. Phthalates are linked to reproductive disorders in males and females, and to endocrine disruption, allergies, and breast cancer. A study conducted by Columbia University’s School of Public Health showed that children subject to high levels of phthalates in utero were 70 percent more likely to develop asthma between the ages of 5 and 12.
Note – be skeptical of the words Natural Fragrance, as the term doesn’t really mean the ingredients are regulated.
A by-product of the distillation of petroleum to produce gasoline, mineral oil is used in Vaseline, baby oil, moisturizers, and styling gels. The World Health Organization considers mineral oil a carcinogen. The EWG reports that it can be contaminated with cancer-causing hydrocarbons during the refining process, and other studies link the oil with tumors in mice. Although mineral oil never spoils and does a good job of trapping moisture, it creates a film that clogs pores, hindering the skin’s ability to slough away debris and excrete toxins.
Used to lighten and even skin tone, hydroquinone is banned in Europe, Japan, and Australia and has been shown to enhance carcinogenic risk by damaging DNA. Studies have shown it to be a skin allergen and respiratory toxin. In addition, it can decrease skin elasticity and cause thinning of the skin.
Sodium lauryl (ether) sulfate (SLS, SLES)
Often used as industrial cleansers, SLS and SLES are added to liquids to enhance a product’s spreading and wetting properties. As a result, they make soap foamy and shampoo lather. SLS is known to penetrate skin and act as an irritant, while SLES is less of an irritant but cannot be metabolized by the liver, and therefore lasts longer in the body. According to the EPA, it is a likely carcinogen in humans. To be safe, avoid any product containing the letters “eth.”
Animal products (Fats, Oil and Musk)
Cruelty-free products are important to us, and that includes avoiding any animal products that require killing or harming an animal. We have found vegan alternatives for all animal products used by far too many skin and beauty product companies.
The one ingredient that we use that is produced by an animal is Beeswax. Having personal experience with beekeeping, we’re aware that the organic, sustainably-sourced Beeswax that we use does NOT harm bees during its extraction.
This broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent is found in cosmetics, toothpaste, and deodorants. According to the Mayo Clinic, triclosan alters hormone regulation in research animals (and likely in humans as well) and may be harmful to the immune system. The American Medical Association advises against the use of triclosan, citing studies that show its widespread use in cleansers and hand sanitizers has contributed to the development of antibiotic-resistant germs. It can also combine with the chlorine in tap water to create carcinogenic chloroform. The International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health reported that the chemical poses a threat to water supplies and is having an adverse impact on fish and other wildlife. In 2016, the FDA banned the use of triclosan, but gave manufacturers five years(!) to phase out its use. This ban took effect in 2020, so take a look around in your medicine cabinet to make sure you don’t have any products with triclosan still hanging around.
The chemicals below will also never be in our products:
- Artificial Colors
- Formaldehyde or Formaldehyde producing ingredients
- Retinyl Palmitate
- Polyethylene Glycol
- Coal Tar
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