Has Manuka Honey Really Been FDA Approved?

honey on honey dipper

by Katherine Corkill Manuka Honey....Could This Be The Next Miracle Ingredient In Skincare? As my company continues to grow, over this past year the product and ingredient sales pitches are becoming an everyday occurrence it seems.  No matter the sales pitch they gave, it always appeared to be the next best thing since the Wonderbra. One sales pitch in particular really stood out for me.  … [Read more...]

Which is Safer – Phenoxyethanol or Water?

Dropper over essential oil bottle

by Dene Godfrey I would like to start this discussion by introducing the concept of “margin of safety” (MoS). This is related to the concept of “the dose makes the poison”, but it allows a numerical value to be assigned, which places the risk in a very clear context and permits a very clear picture of the true dangers in use of an ingredient. The European Commission’s independent scientific … [Read more...]

Let’s Talk Oleic Acid and Vegetable Oils


by Amanda Foxon-Hill It was during a conversation a week ago that I became aware of a potential…. let’s say ‘situation’ can occur with Oleic Acid.  Oleic acid is commonly found in vegetable oils and is a major component in each of the following oils where it may account for up to 80% of the fatty acids present: Sunflower Olive Pecan Canola Macadamia Soybean The situation is … [Read more...]

Do Consumers Think About Parabens in Cosmetics?


by Perry Romanowski If you spend a lot of time on the Internet surfing RSS feeds and social media, you could develop the notion that parabens are dangerous chemicals in cosmetics and that you should avoid products that contain them. Of course, actual science tells a different story and a review of all the scientific evidence by the independent scientists of the EU’s Scientific Committee on … [Read more...]

Lemon On the Rocks: Keep Your Essential Oils Cool


by Robert Tisserand   Essential oils are happiest when cold. If you keep them refrigerated they will last twice as long, especially if you live in a warm climate. Essential oils are expensive, so you want them to stay active as long as possible! Cold good, oxidation bad With time, most essential oil constituents oxidize, and heat promotes oxidation. Once oxidation starts it’s … [Read more...]

Top Causes of Skin Allergies


by Perry Romanowski Many people complain of being sensitive to chemicals or even having allergic reactions. So as a formulator you’ll want to avoid using ingredients that might cause a problem in a significant number of people. So what are those ingredients? Fortunately, most of them are not things that you would put in cosmetic formulas (although there are a couple). Here is a list of … [Read more...]

Cosmetics Ingredients Are Not All the Same


As a beginning chemist, one of the most frustrating things for me as I started my career was the product ingredient lists. While all the products had cosmetic ingredient listings, the ingredient were rarely things that I learned about in college. The cosmetics industry just does not use the same naming system for ingredients as the one you learned in college. The college system of naming is the … [Read more...]

Muddying the Waters or Fueling the Debate?

half naked woman add dead sea clay

Time and time again I see arguments put forward for avoiding the use of petrochemical-derived ingredients in cosmetics. Leaving aside the nonsensical claim that they are all dangerous (fortunately, a view shared only amongst a small minority of ill-informed/naive people), there seem to be 2 main issues: 1)      Oil is not a renewable resource 2)      Oil exploration and processing  are … [Read more...]

Toxic Planet


In this article, I will cover two aspects of scare stories/claims made about cosmetic ingredients: 1)      We are gradually creating a “toxic planet” (an actual claim made in a LinkedIn discussion!) 2)      Modern synthetic chemicals don’t have the same history of human exposure/safe use I have chosen to discuss these two claims because they are linked – by using numbers to demonstrate … [Read more...]

Cosmetic Science Basics – Silicones


The vast majority of cosmetic raw materials are based on hydrocarbons. Oils, polymers, waxes and more involve bonds of carbon and hydrogen. But a notable exception to this hydrocarbon dominance is Cosmetic Silicones. Let’s review silicones used in cosmetics and why. Silicon Molecules Silicones are molecules or raw materials in which the primary backbone is based on a Silicon/Oxygen repeating … [Read more...]