The retail pharmacy chain announced plans this week to remove select ingredients from four of its own cosmetics and personal care brands, calling the move “a natural step in the evolution of our comprehensive approach to chemical safety.”
I’ve lost all respect for CVS. Following in the footsteps of NGO activist groups, the decision to phase out “Chemicals of Concern” shows the stupidity of someone in their decision tree. I doubt that it involved their pharmacists, who are well-read in science, chemistry, and toxicology. It appears the corporate powers that be have been listening to NGO activist groups who demonize just about every personal care chemical over two syllables long. I think the motive is positioning in the marketplace. A target market of new-age hippies and crunchies. They’re caving into the anti-scientific movement and profiting off people’s ignorance of chemistry, when they should be educating the public.
Phthalates are on the no-no list. Chemophobes tend to group them together, but the ones used in cosmetics are DBP (nail polish) and these days you’d be hard pressed to find any fragrance oils that are made with phthalates. As expert Chemist David C. Steinburg said in Cosmetics & Toiletries, October 2005, Volume 120, No 10,
And Yes, CVS sells liquor.
Here is the FDA’s position on phthalates in personal care products. “At the present time, FDA does not have evidence that phthalates as used in cosmetics pose a safety risk.”
I won’t even get started on formaldehyde donors and parabens. Both are safe as used. The irony is they’ll ban ingredients deemed safe by most of the scientific regulatory bodies all over the world, but refuse to quit selling homeopathic remedies. Worthless crap. Homeopathy has been studied to death and doesn’t work under any controlled conditions. At best it’s an expensive placebo…. unless it’s made wrong and poisoning babies.
(Click to read) FDA: Toxic Belladonna In Homeopathic Teething Product
It looks like CVS just can’t resist the $$$ from duping gullible consumers. Profit up, credibility down.
Big changes coming to our lives- a move to what we Michiganders call “up north”. Since our state is the water wonderland, folks head out of the city and suburbs on the weekends to their lake house or cabin. What’s to do? Camp, hike, fish, boating, ski, swim, all-terrain vehicles, snowmobile, snowshoe, climb the dunes, hunt for lighthouses, drink craft beer…and the list goes on.
This move will be permanent. And it will take some time as I’ll need a lab in which to produce my bath and body products without too much down time. I’ve been operating in our 40 x 60 pole building. It was retrofitted with water, heat, air conditioning, and a drain. It never seemed big enough, and this move will certainly be a challenge. Later, we’ll put up a 40 x 80 pole building.
I wanted to track this journey warts & all- so I can look back on it. There’s an enormous amount of work to do (not including renovations to our current house down state).
Update on this post. Now it’s May 2017. It seems we’re moving slowly like a snail. Some rooms in the house have been painted up north, and some in our house down state. But we did get a 40 x 80 pole barn roughed-in up north. It has a second story. There’s a cupola on the top of the building to let light in. All I want to do with the work ahead is put a sofa under it and drink tea with my feet propped up:)
When the 30 day blog challenge was announced, I knew we’d be closing on the house we’d just bought, and that’s a 5-hour trip one way. We’ll be moving up north near the Mackinaw Bridge and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Well, that turned into 5 round trips during the blog challenge. In between, we put in 15 hour days to help our son with renovations on his cottage in northern Michigan. He was preparing for the arrival of the French student we’d for hosted for a year- many moons ago. She was coming to the US for a visit with her husband and 3 kids. We wanted to soak up every moment we could with them.
My husband and I somehow agreed to host a barbecue for them in our new empty house (for a total 18 people), and thus far only had toilet paper!
Besides shopping for food, we had to scramble for seating- thus the extra trips back home to raid the picnic table and patio furniture, and lots of pots & pans, and all that‘s needed to entertain up north. The other thing I lacked was access to the internet to publish the blog posts, so I tethered my laptop to my phone when I had to and hoped for 4G.
A few days ago, there was the goodbye party downstate for the guests that were returning to Paris. And these last few days I’ve been stupid busy with a stat order for 250 one-ounce lotions and 500 one-ounce guest bars, and another wholesale order. (I know this is nothing compared to what others had to do to get their posts out- especially those with little ones.)
Every day & bleary-eyed, the thought of what to write hung over my head. I had to do a post….and an image…no matter what. It usually took me all day to think about what to write and by the time I sat down to write it, I was brain-dead and feared it was rambling nonsense. Grammar and punctuation be dammed. I had a couple of nights of posting near midnight with only a few minutes to spare. Then I’d wake up to a new day with the task of writing a post looming. Low dose-but continuous pressure!
But the blessing is, I now will have 30 days of posts for my tribe to read. It’s allowed me to express what’s important to me on my own real estate; especially when it comes to my business.
Who I am, what I do, why I do it. My customers can read:
- How important cosmetic preservation is.
- How I make decisions based on scientific data, not world view.
- They also know I love to use safe synthetic ingredients that allow me to get the sensory properties that they love on their skin.
- They know better how to spot ludicrous claims, and how to ask for evidence.
- They know there’s nothing to fear from commercial antiperspirants and other traditional products.
- They know soap will neither kill them, nor make them look 20 years younger.
- They know that there’s nothing that proves organic is better. They know now that organic agriculture uses pesticides and herbicides too- the only difference is the origin of the chemical with no regard to toxicity. Those both conventional and organic ingredients have pesticide residues well below any potential harm. That organic is one giant feel -good marketing ploy with no significant benefits.
- They know there are ill-informed charlatans that will use #healthwashing and spurious claims to scare them into parting with their dollars.
- They know that the beauty looks ugly when painted with fear. There is no reason to propagate fear. We already have safe cosmetics and they are still not harming anyone.
They now know I call out bull$hit when I see it.
It took a lot of mental energy to get through the blog challenge, but it feels good to have information for my readers to get to know their maker. Blogging gives the ability to enrich their lives by posting perspectives that they might not have considered before.
I have to be one of the few people in the bath and body manufacturing business who isn’t gushing over essential oils. I bought some last year and on the counter they sit. I’m sure if I ordered products made with essential oils from my Indie group, I’d find them lovely.
I never cared for the way they smell out of the bottle or “got” what they were supposed to be doing for me. Take me to Narnia? Tickle my limbic system with the life force of the plant? Traverse my blood brain barrier and make me smarter? My snark is probably from practicing evidence-based medicine. I pretty much ignore anything that isn’t steeped in science. It’s the #healthwashing aspect of them that confounds me, and I’ve seen that carried over into cosmetics.
The worship of essential oils has turned into a sort of cult or religion. The MLM companies with their outrageous marketing claims and some slimy snake-oil reps have ruined it for me. It’s the Swiss army knife of “holistic” medicine. The placebo effect seems to be alive and well. It’s disheartening to see good people being so easily taken in by incredulous claims ranging from curing erectile dysfunction to Ebola. It’s smelling more like a cash cow.
I find it ironic that modern-day charlatans are promoting thieves oil….
Among the list of all the wonders attributed to EO’s, most of them claim mood enhancement. Fragrance oils can do the same thing. Essential oils don’t own the word aromatherapy. Fragrance oils can make people happy as well. That’s evidenced from the success of the multi-billion dollar fragrance oil industry world-wide. Fragrance can take someone back in time to childhood memories or remind them of events or people that they care about. I buy them without phthalates, and have IFRA guidelines for safe use.
The typical way to demonize fragrance oils is by pointing out they’re often made of a mix of natural aroma chemicals and “synthetic” chemicals. Many moons ago, they were granted trade secret status and people can’t stand that. They envision toxins and “nasty chemicals they can’t pronounce.”
If you go here there’s a partial listing of lavender oil chemicals. If those people had a similar list of the trade-secret fragrance chemicals in front of them, I wonder what the hell they’d do with that information? It’s the same crowd of people that won’t put anything they can’t pronounce on their chakra points. But they’ll gladly ingest an essential oil based on what a salesperson told them when the absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion of these chemicals are unknown. All because it came from a plant and we all know that makes it “speshull”, right?
There’s claims of antimicrobial action but at the level it would take, it might be irritating to the skin. On the EU list of allergens that must be declared, I think most of the 26 are from plants.
Hand washing with soap, it works.
EO’s are all the rage: self-medicating for the worried well until someone gets hurt. I’ve read several injury reports from their use ranging from seizures to esophageal erosion. That’s why we have and need trained aromatherapists!
I have no problem with adults indulging in their misters, inhalers, vape sticks etc. Just leave it off the helpless kids and animals who can’t speak for themselves. (Think dogs- with their extraordinary and magnified sense of smell).