We recently received feedback via our submission form asking why we were doing this… by doing this I’m referring to starting Personal Care Truth. Lisa and I feel very strongly that consumers deserve science backed evidence so they can make informed decisions when purchasing products for their families. While some of the information published on Personal Care Truth (PCT) may not fall exactly in line with our own companies, we believe in education and presenting both sides of the story so that you may chose personal care products that you feel comfortable putting on your skin. Today we’re sharing this feedback and my response to open the lines of communication and clarify why the founders have their own natural and organic bath & body companies and also started PersonalCareTruth.com.
Dear Lisa and Kristin,
In the past years I’ve tried my best to throw out my harmful skin care products and switch to ‘organic’. I know better than to believe in everything I hear and see and I understand that ‘organic’ is not as black and white as we would like it to be. I also know that in order to a business to become profitable, they have to make a fuss about their product.
However, no matter how much I try to believe that you are doing the right thing, I get conflicting messages from your articles. Let me introduce my self as a simple but aware and well-read consumer. Educated and driven to see this planet become a better place to live in. My passion is in nutrition but not in the form of vitamins and supplements but in a form of nutrient-dense foods. Therefore, its rather interesting to see how many times you refer to foods and their chemical content.
Saying that, I am confused about your goal and the way you go about it. I certainly don’t see the need to keep bringing up your displeasure about Skin Deep. You made your point, let’s move on, please! You influenced me enough to look at them differently but attacking them at every opportunity you have is not going to gain more customers (at lest I hope it won’t). However, we live in 2010 and we all know that creating awareness means creating fuss, making news sensational and exaggerating as much as possible. Sad but true. At least Skin Deep created awareness in me and in many people. Can we take it to a next level? I am sure we can.
What I don’t understand is why you keep referring to foods and their metal and chemical content and make your point that way. Why do I have to think that using lipstick with lead is not worse than the water I am drinking. Why is it OK to have parabens in my products based on that “We regularly eat foods containing phytoestrogens”. We can’t and should not compare things to worse things because then we would not have a reason to improve. Then we may just as well put our heads in the sand.
I read many websites, many magazines (some worse than others), go to seminars and keep my eyes and ears open. But I still don’t follow everything in the skin care industry. So, what I would love to see from you is unbiased education without attacks and without comparing to something worse. There will always be companies you could attack and there will always be foods and other product that will be worse. But I have a choice and if its in my power to use lipsticks without lead, why shouldn’t I? Because I get more from my water? I wish I could influence my town about my water in the same way as I can decide not to purchase a lipstick!
Give me facts and tell me why things are not bad – since that seems to be your purpose, right? Or am I missing something here? So far what I’ve seen is you defending chemicals, metals and other ingredients which have bad reputation. In my opinion, no defense in necessary. What we need is clear explanation where the line goes between good and bad, harmful and not harmful. What is really harmful and why etc.
Let me close with one more thing. If I didn’t stop using lipstick with lead or products with parabens because we eat and drink plenty of foods on a daily basis that contain more of each, then all I am achieving is getting more of them into my body. Every little counts. Whether you are partial to skin care and think that we should start with cutting out these harmful ingredients from our foods first or not, is your opinion. But every little counts and two wrong will not make it right. The overall goal should be cutting out the lead altogether and I would love to see you promoting that.
Thanks for taking the time and submitting your feedback. I’m sorry you feel we are attacking Skin Deep/EWG/CFSC. That is not our intention. Since you asked about our goal of the site: “Saying that, I am confused about your goal and the way you go about it.” I hope this clarifies things. Our intention, as stated on both our about us and welcome page is:
“To deliver scientific based information on what’s in personal care products to YOU… Personal Care Truth is not about scare tactics, generalizations, fear mongering, or hopping aboard what’s considered trendy at the moment. Personal Care Truth is about education, facts, questions, research, sharing knowledge, and empowering consumers to make the choice that’s right for their families. We welcome your questions and submissions; let’s combine our resources and share scientific based information on personal care products with the world.
We believe it is more powerful to provide information to educate and empower YOU as opposed to scaring you with information that has not been backed by science.”
As long as EWG/CFSC/Skin Deep keeps publishing reports with misinformation, we will continue to have industry experts weigh in with the science backed truth. I know this may be difficult for some people to understand, as it is new (and sometimes conflicting) information to many. Natural and organic industry leaders have addressed these concerns with CFSC for the past 2 years at annual CFSC meetings. I have attended the annual meeting and witnessed this first hand. Skin Deep actually dings some botanicals in their system, which has caused conflict with many natural and organic companies in the industry. There are many natural and organic companies that have issues with Skin Deep and have asked to be removed from the CFSC signers list due to these concerns. I suggest reading Robert Tisserand’s post to learn more about how Skin Deep negatively ranks natural botanical ingredients. CFSC has not listened to the industry feedback. One of the founders of CFSC even stated in a comment on my blog:
“My view on Skin Deep is that it is not a perfect system and never can be, because of what it is trying to do — analyze an entire industry…”
She went on to state, “I agree with you that Skin Deep should not ding botanicals, many of us have made this case to EWG to no avail”
Yet nothing has been done to change the system… So I must ask, what exactly is CFSC/EWG/Skin Deep trying to accomplish here? That is why we started this site. Consumers deserve the truth. The industry deserves the truth. We all deserve the truth.
RE: lead in lipstick, all of the articles on the PCT site do mention that trace amounts of lead naturally occur in lipstick. These are scientific based answers from industry professionals. You are more than welcome to your own opinion and purchasing choices! You also referred to the comparison between food, candy, water etc… which are referenced in some of the articles on this site because they are being used as a scientific based comparison– when we consume these things they enter our body, just as we put personal care products on our body and they are absorbed into our skin.
We are here to provide the consumers and industry professionals with correct information based on science. I do hope this gives you a clearer idea of what Personal Care Truth or Scare is all about- Education, Science & Truth.