The cosmetics and personal care industry has plenty of shocking secrets, and we’re here to share 10 things cosmetic companies don’t want you to know. From the lack of regulation in the U.S. compared to other countries, to the misleading use of certain words and phrases, there are lots of scary things about cosmetics that will open your eyes to little-known facts about cosmetics products. You’ll never look at a list of ingredients in the same way again.
You’d quite rightly assume that the government makes sure all cosmetics that end up on shop shelves have been thoroughly tested. But that just simply isn’t the case. You’ll be amazed by how little regulation the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has over the cosmetics industry. And when you find out how few ingredients have been banned in the U.S. compared to the European Union, you’ll be left reeling about how the two areas can have such different views on chemicals. There is a place to discover how safe products are, though, if you only know where to look. Clue: it involves the Environmental Working Group (EWG).
We’re all aware of marketing hype, but when you read certain words on labels, you figure they must be accurate. Terms like ‘hypoallergenic’ or ‘detoxifying’ must have some scientific evidence, right? Given that there are no guidelines or requirements for such claims, they end up having little, if any, genuine worth. And then there are the assumptions we make about the word ‘organic’ equaling safe – this really isn’t the case, either. Then there are words that seem the same, but actually have very different meanings, like ‘unscented’ and ‘fragrance-free’. You’ll be surprised by all the nuances that are contained in the marketing of cosmetics. And if you thought you knew everything about a sunscreen by its SPF value, then think again. There are plenty more considerations that cosmetic companies don’t shout about.
When it comes to differences in cosmetics, surely expensive, high-end designer products have far superior formulas to cheap drugstore alternatives? In many cases, the main difference comes down to something as simple as packaging. With the same manufacturer creating similar formulas for both, you might just find you’re shelling out a load more cash simply to have a glass jar as opposed to a plastic bottle.