The beauty and cosmetic industry are self-policing. Raw materials like esters and other products are tested for safety, while formulated products like shampoos are also tested for safety before they go to market. There is an ongoing effort to remove harmful products contained in water based products. The widespread movement of clean beauty is taking off quickly and Phoenix Chemical is ahead of the game by responding to consumer’s demands for safe and “clean” cosmetic and beauty products with our green chemistry offerings.

Facing the Facts

Due to current regulations in the United States, beauty and cosmetic manufacturers have very few stipulations in regards to the safety of the ingredients they include in the beauty products they produce. A law passed in 1938 made it possible for companies to disguise harmful chemicals in their products such as peptides, carcinogens, parabens and other questionable ingredients with confusing labeling and long ingredient names that consumers don’t understand. Upon discovery of these potentially harmful elements, educated consumers have begun to shift toward “clean” beauty products where every chemical and ingredient is deemed safe, or even natural. This shift occurred when consumers began learning of the need for better beauty products after research proved direct correlations between cosmetic products containing harmful toxins and carcinogens to preventable diseases and ailments. Phoenix Chemical recognizes the need for more transparency within beauty and cosmetic products, and we fully embrace the production and manufacturing of safe ingredients to be used in beauty products.

Cause and Effects of Harmful Chemicals in our Beauty Products

Carcinogens are known to cause cancers and other diseases, and many of the beauty and cosmetic products in the market today contain carcinogens and other harmful ingredients that are disguised by lengthy names consumers would not think to question. Formaldehyde, for example, is a preservative used to prolong the shelf life of many of today’s beauty and cosmetics products. Formaldehyde releasers were first put into beauty products to keep them from spoiling and free from bacteria and are substances that are released over time to keep the product fresh. You may have heard of formaldehyde before, as the liquid version, formalin, is used to preserve cadavers that med students use in their anatomy courses. Most commonly found in nail polishes and nail polish removers, formaldehyde and formaldehyde releasers are used by many cosmetic brand manufacturers as a cheap way to keep products lasting longer.

Another harmful ingredient commonly found in beauty and cosmetic products are parabens. First commercialized in the 1950s, parabens are a group of synthetic compounds commonly used as preservatives in deodorants, toothpastes, shampoos, conditioners, body lotions and makeups to stop the growth of fungus and bacteria and other potentially damaging microbes. Research has shown that almost 90 percent of every day consumer products contain measureable amounts of parabens, which make them almost impossible to avoid. After much research and investigation, parabens have been proven to disrupt hormone levels in the human body. Harmful effects of parabens are linked to breast cancer and infertility, and they are found in most beauty products on the market today.

As science advances and research into these ingredients becomes more in-depth, consumers are beginning to become more aware of their harmful effects and becoming conscious of the products they purchase. Due to the research behind harmful ingredients like this, formaldehyde has been eliminated from all Phoenix Chemical products.

Green Chemistry and Clean Beauty

Green chemistry is the utilization of a set of principles that reduces or eliminates the use or generation of hazardous and harmful substances in the design of chemical products. In simpler terms green chemistry is an attempt by chemists and beauty and cosmetic brand manufacturers to replace potentially harmful ingredients in the products they make for consumers with safer, plant-based materials. As consumer demands for these less harmful ingredients increase, major beauty and cosmetic manufactures are beginning to shift their offerings to “clean” products.

An increased interest in wellness and detoxification, both in terms of food and wellness products is fueling the demand for beauty and cosmetic products that have been stripped back to “clean” natural ingredients that have less of a harmful effect on the human body. Another important element in the discussion of clean beauty is the rise of skin sensitivity due to increased exposure to pollution and harsh ingredients in the products consumers use. By limiting the amount of synthetic and non-natural ingredients, consumers are noticing that irritations to their skin and preventable issues like acne are occurring less often.

Clean Beauty Results

In addition to better performing, less harmful beauty and cosmetic products, green chemistry and clean beauty trends are also having less of an impact on the environment. By utilizing plant derived materials such as soy, castor, coconut and corn, beauty and cosmetic manufacturers are able to deliver products that are proven to perform while focusing on sustainability and reducing environmental impact. These types of products can directly replace and improve upon products that incorporate non-sustainable ingredients such as petroleum.

Phoenix Chemical is invested in creating innovative, sustainable, plant-derived natural cosmetic and beauty products that provide specialized, functional results that consumers are looking for, without the harmful effects traditional cosmetics products have been shown to cause. By utilizing plant-derived materials such as rapeseed, soy, castor, coconut and corn, Phoenix Chemical continues to produce materials that deliver prove, unique performance while focusing on the overall wellness of the consumer and our environment. If you are interested in learning more about green chemistry and joining the massive movement toward clean beauty, you can read more about our sustainable, plant-based products in our Advances in Green Chemistry catalog here.