Wednesday, June 4, 2014

EWG Skin Deep Scale and Whole Foods Premium Body Care Standards

These, in our opinion, are the web's 2 best places for understanding whether the ingredients in your favorite shampoo are friends or foes.  Just because something has a long scientific name, it does not necessarily mean that it is toxic.  Even with that said, it is more than wise to stick whenever possible with an ingredient list that is basic and simple to understand.

If you come across cosmetic chemicals (or even food grade chemicals) that you are unfamiliar with, the EWG Skin Deep scale is the place to go to ascertain how toxic or friendly it actually is.  You just type in the chemical compound of choice in the allotted space and their little search engine will churn out a number for you, between 0 and 10 - with 0 being not harmful (e.g. olive oil) and 10 being highly toxic.

The numbers are based on decades of scientific research and EWG will actually give you the necessary reference information should you need it, that supports it.

EWG also has many food and cosmetic brands in its database that you can check out in a similar way.

Generally speaking - you should not use anything with a rating higher than 4 on babies or children.  This is just my opinion.

Whole Foods deserves big kudos lately for really narrowing down what they will allow in their personal care aisles.  This was not always the case.  In recent years, they implemented their Whole Foods Premium Body Care Standards and published a list of hundreds of chemicals that they will not permit on their shelves.  This list of "ingredients unacceptable for skin care"
, in concert with the Skin Deep scale is also a good way to ascertain whether your children's (or your own) body care products are safe to use on a regular basis.

Bear in mind that the Whole Foods List also includes a few ingredients that are actually safe like willow bark extract and cocamidapropyl betaine, but which are irritants to a small segment of the population. So that might not make the product concerned a throw away for you.

Either way, these two resources are great for parents or caregivers who are pressed on time but want to be sure they are doing the right thing for their child.  It shaves off quite a few minutes from having to slog through your Google search results.

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