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A new study has found that many cosmetics labeled as “organic” may also carry unsafe toxins. The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database is an analysis of 5,000 personal care products, grading each for its safety for consumers to use as a resource. A recent study by EWG found that cosmetics with an “organic” label may not be what consumers think- a whopping 20 percent of the products that use the word “organic” in their name contain harmful ingredients that score low evaluations on Skin Deep.
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Eco-conscious consumers gravitate toward trying to buy organic and sustainable products, but recent studies have found that organic cosmetics aren’t necessarily 100 percent safe. The government allows products to retain a USDA Organic seal if 95 percent of their contents are derived from farm products- but what about the other five percent?
The EWG’s rating system stacks the overall contents of cosmetics, ranking 1 for totally safe to 10, being unsafe. Their evaluation of over 5,000 cosmetic products showed that the USDA Organic seal doesn’t mean 100 percent organic. Of these products they tested, 250 marked with organic labels ranked only a 5 or above- and four of these weighed in at a dangerous 9 or 10. The fact that these 250 bear a label of “organic” is extremely misleading to conscious-consumers. The EWG also found other misleading ingredients, like fragrances in products claiming to be unscented and hypoallergenic.
Despite the USDA’s refusal to regulate the term “organic,” consumers can protect themselves by using the Skin Deep® database, which preserves ingredient transparency, as well as purchase EWG-verified products.