Today my guests Diana Kaye and James Hahn This husband-and-wife are co-founders of their USDA certified organic business Terressentials. We’ll be talking today about how organic personal care products are mislabeled in various ways and what to look for on a label to make sure you have a truly organic product. Diana and Jim own a small organic farm in lovely Middletown Valley, Maryland and have operated their organic herbal personal care products business there since 1996. Terressentials was originally started in Virginia in 1992. It grew out of their search for chemical-free products after Diana’s personal experience with cancer and chemotherapy in 1988. Prior to Diana’s cancer, they were involved in commercial architecture in Washington DC. Diana and James are proud to be an authentic USDA certified organic and Fair Made USA business. They are obsessive organic researchers and artisan handcrafters of more than one hundred USDA certified organic gourmet personal care products that they offer through their two organic stores in Frederick County, Maryland, through a network of select retail partners across the US, and to customers around the world via their informative web site. www.debralynndadd.com/debras-list/terressentials
- GMOs in Personal Care Products
- Toxics in Essential Oils?
- How to Restore Your “Virgin Hair”
- More About “Organic”: Politics and the Regulation of Marketplace Distribution
- The Challenges of Achieving Organic Certification
- What Organic Means — From the Experience of Being Organic Farmers
- Why One Couple Decided to Get an Organic Farm and Make USDA Certified Organic Gourmet Personal Care Products
TOXIC FREE TALK RADIO
“How to Read a Label on Organic Personal Care Products”
Host: Debra Lynn Dadd
GUEST: Diana Kaye and James Hahn
DATE OF BROADCAST: October 21, 2014
DEBRA: Hi, I’m Debra Lynn Dadd and this is Toxic Free Talk Radio where we talk about how to thrive in a toxic world and live toxic-free. Today, my guests are Diana Kaye and James Hahn. Oh, I should say it’s Tuesday, October 21st 2014. It’s a beautiful in Clearwater, Florida. I love autumn. We can open the windows now instead of living in air conditioning.
But anyway, we’re going to talk with Diana Kaye and James Hahn who have been on the show before. They have a business called Terressentials where they make – I think they call it ‘gourmet personal care products’. I’m looking at the description for the show today. It’s ‘organic gourmet personal care products’.
They’re a USDA certified organic gourmet personal care products and they really are gourmet personal care products. They’re just really high quality. Their natural scents are just luscious. I use their products and I just enjoy them every day.
So what we’re talking about today is how to read a label on organic personal care products. There are some products that say they’re organic, but are they really certified? There are some companies that would like to mislead you. Other products are really good. How do you tell the difference? This is the main thing we’re going to talk about today.
I know from past experience that Diana and James have a lot to tell us, which is why I have them on the show every month. They have just a lot of information and experience. They were one of the first companies to make organic personal care products many, many years ago. They’ve been doing this just about as long as I’ve been doing what I do, a long time.
So we might hear anything today. That’s what I’m wanting to say. We might hear anything from them today that has to do with the organic products, organic personal care products in addition to how to read the label.
Hi, Diana and James.
DIANA KAYE: Hi, Debra. How is it going?
DEBRA: Good! Busy. I know you guys are busy too.
DIANA KAYE: It’s life!
DEBRA: Yeah, it is! I was just working on my newsletter this week, this morning, yesterday. There is so much going on in the world about toxics and not toxic products that I couldn’t even keep up with it. I’m already piling up information to put in next week’s newsletter because I just didn’t have the time to put it all in the newsletter.
I actually work a whole day. I work all day on Monday just doing the newsletter. There’s just so much going on.
DIANA KAYE: I know. Oh, I’m not surprised. I often find myself at three or four in the morning doing the same thing, keeping up with and trying to digest all the information. I may have perhaps a stronger constitution than most people and I can absorb this information without feeling totally overwhelmed. But I know so many other people, they have a really hard time with being bombarded with so much information and trying to protect themselves and their family.
DEBRA: There is so much information. And so that’s why I think it’s important that I do what I do because I’m getting all these newsletters and notices and stuff from all these different places and I can kind of digest it and put it in a little summary about what’s going on in the world of toxics.
And so if you’re interested in getting my newsletter, it comes out every Tuesday. I just sent one out. It announces all the radio shows for the week, but it also tells about other things that will be on my website.
And today, I also take things that I think that you really need to know from other websites. Like today, I was announcing about a new toxics act that is now being considered, how you can write to your senator. There’s tips on how to – in today’s episode, there’s tips on how you can have less toxic Halloween and things like that.
So just go to ToxicFreeTalkRadio.com. You’ll see there’s a place to sign up on the right column of the page.
So Diana, is James not with us today?
DIANA KAYE: He is running behind. I’m not sure if he’s going to be able to jump in. I’m sorry. I just learned myself this morning, so I apologize for that.
DEBRA: Totally fine! I know you have a busy, busy business and especially now, there’s so much going on.
So let’s just start talking about organic personal care products and how they’re labeled. I’m just going to let you start wherever you want to start.
DIANA KAYE: Okay. Well, as I was preparing for the show today – I’m still laughing at myself. You know there’s some people who collect salt & pepper shakers or they collect figurines, lots of stamps, et cetera. I collect bottles of body care products that are labeled. I have got boxes and boxes of these products because I collected them over the past 20 years. It’s overwhelming to me sometimes when I look at all these products. Many of them are being sold right now, today over the Internet. Some are still being sold in health food stores – yes, health food stores – all across the country. It just boggles the mind because…
DEBRA: Well, why don’t you just pick one? Okay, go ahead and finish your sentence, but I was going to suggest that you just pick one. Start picking them out and tell us what’s wrong with them. You don’t have to tell us the brand.
DIANA KAYE: No, I will not talk about company names. The only way that we can really distinguish what we’re doing (and this has been an issue for us since we started our business) is we have to talk about ingredients because that’s what distinguishes something that’s really natural and oh, my gosh! The word ‘natural’, if you see that word, run in the other direction.
We are talking about, for instance if you can bear with me for a second here, not just products that are labeled as ‘organic’ in the body care world, but we do have (and this is something that consumers would be pleased to hear about) a federal legislation called the National Organic Program, which assures people that if they buy a food product whether it was made in the U.S. or it was made in Europe that when it comes here to the United States and it has the word ‘organic’ on it, that that product has gone through a process of certification.
We now have what’s called a reciprocity agreement with the EU, so that if products are certified to the European Union standard, then those products are also considered to be organic here in the United States. They do have to go through an oversight procedure to make sure that they’re legitimately certified, but there is som assurance with that.
The problem is we don’t have that assurance (although we should) with personal care products and – hello, surprise, this is a whole other conversation – cotton products, anything made from cotton and/or hemp and linen, any truly natural fibers.
The original tent of Congress when they were composing what they called the Organic Food Production Act of 1990 [inaudible 00:09:07] discussion to rounding the creation of that act was that Congress wanted the word ‘organic’ – they wanted organics to grow and they wanted many different types of product.
In their discussions (I have copies of these early discussions), they wanted to encourage personal care products and clothing products to follow the rule so that we could create more demand for true agricultural ingredient.
So the reason I’m ‘mentioning all that is that we don’t have enforcement in the United States in the personal care department and we don’t have enforcement in the world of textiles.
DEBRA: Okay. So wait, I just want to ask you a question right there.
DIANA KAYE: Sure!
DEBRA: Because I think that people think organic is organic is organic and because of the National Organic Program and organic foods, if they see ‘organic’, they think that it’s all organic.
Now, so we have the USDA Program and the organic seal for food and that’s organic. In the textile realm, we have the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), which is its own program and that’s different from the National Organic Program, but is there not – oh, I see that we need to go to break. So I’ll ask the question and you can answer when we get back.
DIANA KAYE: Okay.
DEBRA: Is there not some program that covers personal care products? We’ll go to break and we’ll find out when we come back. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye from Terressentials. Her website is Terressentials.com. They make USDA certified organic gourmet personal care products and she’s going to tell us what that means (among other things) when we come back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye from Terressentials. We’re talking about how to read the label on organic personal care products.
What I asked her before the break was we have the USDA organic standard for food and we have the Global Organic Textile Standards for textiles, but do we have any such organization with our standards and regulation and certification and all of that specifically for personal care products?
DIANA KAYE: Well, it’s interesting that you mentioned this GOTS standard. That is a standard that was created in Europe and is used for products that are – for instance, cotton. A lot of cotton is now grown in India. However, most people aren’t aware of this, but the USDA has made a policy scope statement and their statement said that if a product or textile product (and I’m just going to digress here a little bit) is labeled organic, it is supposed to be certified to the USDA organic standard not to an international standard.
This is another area though where they haven’t been enforcing their own guidance policy. And it’s strange because what a lot of manufacturers have claimed is that, “Well, personal care products aren’t food” and I beg to differ, but I’ll get back to that.
So if that’s their claim about why they think they can call products organic, but not be organic, well, let’s talk about cotton. It’s not a food product and contrary to what other people may think, cotton seed oil is not really something that humans should be eating. It has no history of human use for food.
DEBRA: And let’s just add right there that when you see cotton seed oil on a label, a food label that it comes from cotton, conventionally grown cotton (unless it saysorganic cotton seed oil), it comes from conventionally grown cotton and conventionally grown cotton I think uses more pesticides on crops than any other crop in the world I think. And so it has much more pesticide in it than food crops, ordinary food crops that have pesticides on it.
And so if you are eating cotton seed oil, you’re getting so much pesticides. It doesn’t say that on the label of course.
DIANA KAYE: No, it doesn’t. And the thing about oils (any kind of oil, I don’t care if it’s olive oil, sunflower oil, cotton seed oil, pick your favorite oil), when these crops are grown conventionally – and these goes back to our label and why some of these labels, we’re going to be talking about shouldn’t even be called ‘natural’, let alone having the product labeled as organic.
Many of the petrochemicals that are used in commercial, industrial, conventional agriculture are lipophilic, which means they are attracted to fat. So if a pesticide is applied at the base of the plant or the soil or even if it’s sprayed on the plant, it’s washed off into the soil, taken up by the roots and then it concentrates always in any oil portion of that plant.
And seed oils, this is a concern because you’re going to get all the concentrated pesticides or any other kind of petrochemically based growth regulators, fertilizers, herbicides and et cetera. So it’s really not a good idea to use any kind of oil product. I don’t care if it’s food or personal care that are not organic. ‘Natural’, as I’ve said, if you see the word, run the other direction.
DEBRA: Yes, because natural does not mean organic.
DIANA KAYE: Oh, my gosh!
DEBRA: You know, I’m looking at products all the time as you are. One of the questions that came up this week on my Q&A blog was somebody was looking for unscented aftershave. And so I started looking for an unscented aftershave [inaudible 00:18:10]. And so a product came up and it said that it was ‘natural’. It was a natural, unscented aftershave.
And so I looked at the ingredients list. To me, that’s something that’s natural. When I look at your ingredients listed house things on there like lavender essential oil where you can recognize there’s something lavender, there’s clay, there’s…
DIANA KAYE: Coco butter.
DEBRA: …unrecognizable – coco butter, yeah! Coconut oil or something like that. There were so many ingredients on this ingredients list that were just industrial chemical words and things that you= could not recognize and even I would need to go and look them up (and I know a lot of cosmetic ingredients). These are things that I have to go and look up.
To me, that’s not a natural ingredient if something is processed. If it goes through an industrial process, I don’t care if it starts as coconut oil or any other [inaudible 00:19:18] resource, it’s not natural anymore. It’s not.
And this is the problem. For me, most so-called ‘natural’ personal care products is that they take some renewable resource and they put through an industrial process, combining it with who knows what kind of industrial chemicals to make some ingredient and that’s not in its natural state in addition to the fact that it’s not organic.
DIANA KAYE: Absolutely, absolutely. And that is why we have tried to make the distinction about ‘organic’ versus non-organic products and talk about ingredients just exactly for that specific reason.
Again, I have these boxes and boxes of products. It overwhelms me because we are really a small family business. We try, Debra like you, but we aren’t as nationally based in terms of our education as you are to try to teach people, “Really what is in this stuff?”
It makes it so challenging when our voice is so small. You can go on the Internet at any time and use any search engine and if you plug in ‘organic body care’, you’re going to come up with hundreds of thousands ahead.
And what we’re seeing more and more (because the Internet has made commerce so equal or equalized it) that you will have products, something from another country and just compound the problem that are called organic, that don’t even have any kind of a certification to one of the industry standards over in Europe or wherever else, whatever country it is.
So in addition to the problem of having so many industry types of standards (not governmental standards) – uh-oh, I heard some music.
DEBRA: Yes, it’s time to go to break, but you can finish your sentence.
DIANA KAYE: Okay. For example, in the EU, they do have an organic governmental standard, but that standard was not ever written to include personal care products.
DIANA KAYE: So it’s another glitch that we have that we have the food coming over that says ‘EU certified’ and it says it’s organic and the USDA accept it, but if it’s personal care, they’re not accepting it.
DEBRA: Okay! So now, I need to cut you off. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye from Terressentials. We’re talking about the labeling of organic personal care products. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye. She has a business, Terressentials, which she and her husband created and they make USDA certified organic gourmet personal care products.
So we’re talking about how personal care products are labeled and their lack of enforcement structure, et cetera. Go on, Diana.
DIANA KAYE: Well, you had asked me to take out one of the products from my collection and to just dive in with a little bit about some of the examples to why these products aren’t organic (and I’m going to add, not even natural).
We have over the years compiled some educational articles. We’d invite anyone to check those out. Many of them are published on our websites. For people who have events or groups, we also have printed versions of many of those articles in kind of a brochure format so that people could help to educate their family, their friends, the groups that they participate with, et cetera.
I have products, a variety of products here – shampoos, products advertised as sunscreen, conditioners, body washes, you name it, cosmetics, colored cosmetics, et cetera that are boldly labeled as organic that are not certified organic to the USDA National Organic Program. Many of them have zero certification of any kind.
And when I say an industry standard, I’ve mentioned that previously that many of these products can’t even certify to industry standard.
Industry standards, if I can give you a brief definition of…
DIANA KAYE: Here’s a group of manufacturers and maybe the suppliers of their chemical ingredients and maybe even some of the distributors of their product to distribute to – like, for example, a retail chain. These people get together and they decide they’re going to come up with what their definition of organic is.
And when they come up with these standards, everyone that I have seen is in conflict with what the USDA standard is for organic products. There are allowances for chemical processes, allowances for chemical ingredients used as catalyst and reactive agent to create these synthetic materials that they’re calling ‘natural’, which aren’t.
The problem here that’s adding to the confusion in this day of our Internet global marketplace is that we have several industry groups that got together in various countries just to thicken their soup. And so now we have industry standards created by manufacturers (not government, not the people, without consumer input) that come from different countries.
For example, if it comes from Europe, you might see the word BIO. That’s the phrase that they have used for many years over there to designate products that are organic. But again, it doesn’t mean that they’re certified to the EU standard, the government standard. It could be something that was certified to standards created by the manufacturers themselves to include all the different chemical ingredients that they use in their product.
And so we have a huge mess on our hands in the world of personal care right now with this labeling situation. I know, Debra, we were going to talk about categories of ingredients at a later date, but would you like for me to just give you a couple of examples of ingredients that are listed or maybe just read the ingredients from one product?
DEBRA: Well, here’s what I’d like you to do. Why don’t you just start with one product, tell us if it’s shampoo or whatever it is and tell us what is on the label like any claims.
DIANA KAYE: Sure.
DEBRA: You don’t have to read the whole ingredients list right at the start, but then explain to us what you’re seeing through your eyes why this is misleading or is not giving right information or is not organic or whatever because remember, we’re looking for truly organic products, so why is this one something we should watch out for?
DIANA KAYE: Okay. This product that I have, the company name includes the word ‘organic’. And in fact, the word ‘organic’, the company name is two words and the first word is ‘organic’.
So right at the top of the product, this particular one that I have is a conditioner, a hair conditioner. The first word at the top of that package is ‘organic’. It has a round circle on the front that says, “No SLS, parabens, synthetic fragrants or colorants’ and it makes the claim that it has two botanical extracts all on the front to smooth and rehydrate hair. That’s the claim.
What I’m seeing is that the main ingredient in this product is cetearyl alcohol, which is an oleochemical fatty acid. It’s a white fractionated, waxy substance. In some cases, it is not even derived from – we were talking about how some things are derived from coconut oil. We use the word “derive from”. We use that phrase in quote. But in this case, we don’t really even have any way of knowing what that cetearyl alcohol comes from because they’re not even –
A lot of companies do this. They’ll put in parenthesis ‘derived from coconut oil’, which technically, you’re not even supposed to do, but this company doesn’t even do that at all.
So the primary ingredient in this product is – well, first of all, water. That’s common. It’s just water. It doesn’t say spring water, distilled water or anything. It just says ‘water’. And then the second ingredient would be this cetearyl alcohol, which is commonly used.
DEBRA: I want to jump in for a second and say that when it says ‘water’ on the label, unless it says otherwise, it’s just tap water.
DIANA KAYE: Sure, it can be.
DEBRA: It could have all kinds of pollutants and fluorides and all those kinds of things in it, which are still there now in the product (it’s the main ingredient) and you have no idea. This is one of the reasons why we have to be paying attention to what the ingredients are and not just the claims on the front.
I also wanted to say that the word ‘organic’, if you look it up in the dictionary, it means – I can’t quote it exactly, but it means that it comes from organic matter, like from plants. But we have this other definition of ‘organic agriculture’, which means that there’s a certain way that those plants are grown without pesticides, et cetera. You can use the word ‘organic’ to say something is ‘organically’. “It happens organically” means that it happens like it would happen in nature.
And so I’m getting back to the name of this product, Organic whatever-it-is. If it’s made with plants – I’m asking you a question now and you can answer when we come back – if it’s made from plants, I think that they can get away from saying ‘organic’ because it’s got some plants in it. It doesn’t even have to be 100% plants, but it’s got plants in it. That doesn’t necessarily mean organically grown. This is very confusing.
So let’s talk about that when we come back. You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye from Terressentials. We were talking about the labeling of organic personal care products. We’ll be right back.
DEBRA: You’re listening to Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. My guest today is Diana Kaye from Terressentials and we’re talking about personal care products and how they’re labeled.
What were we talking about before the break?
DIANA KAYE: We were talking about the idea that – you know, that’s a really good question.
DEBRA: [laughing] I was talking about…
DIANA KAYE: I had been [inaudible 00:39:09]
DEBRA: You know, during the break, all these things happen, the phone rings…
DIANA KAYE: Oh, my goodness.
DEBRA: Okay! So I was talking about how the word ‘organic’ can be misused on a label. That was the question I wanted you to address, how it can be misused and not even mean organically grown.
DIANA KAYE: Actually, yes, that is the question. Gosh! You’re good at this. Say if a product claim to be organic, they are making a claim that that is an agriculture product because the word ‘organic’ in the widely accepted definition means that it is a product — and we’re setting organic chemistry aside, but…
DEBRA: And that is another definition of organic.
DIANA KAYE: Yes! That is the one that people misuse all the time. Take a look on the Internet for ‘organic dry cleaners’. That’s infuriating to me.
But the point here is that this is the USDA. This is their position. If your product is an agricultural product and you are using the word ‘organic’, then you are subject to following the organic rules and to enforcement.
However, what these manufacturers are trying to do by using the word ‘organic’ in their company names and on the labels is to give you the impression that that is an agricultural product because they talk about all the botanical ingredients. When they make those kinds of claims, that should trigger some kind of enforcement because they are clearly infringing on the organic certification name and the value that is inherent when a product actually is certified.
So that’s why I’m really troubled by this because again, when they make their claim, what they’re trying to convince consumers of is that these are botanical products, that they are products that are agricultural botanical products.
DEBRA: Yes. Now, this is false – I want to ask you a question, then I want to say something. Is thereany organic ingredients in it at all?
DIANA KAYE: Well, here’s the problem. Without a third party verification, we have no way of verifying that. They could claim…
DEBRA: Right! But if you looked on the ingredients list on the back, does it say like organic blah-blah-blah.
DIANA KAYE: Yes, they are making that claim, but there is no certification.
DEBRA: But there’s no certification.
DIANA KAYE: Third-party verification. So our company can simply lie. They can!
DEBRA: They can.
DIANA KAYE: They can just put the word ‘organic’ on there because nobody is policing this and that is a huge problem.
DEBRA: Well, not only is it a problem. Here’s what I want to say. It’s illegal.
DIANA KAYE: It should be.
DEBRA: It’s illegal.
DIANA KAYE: It should be.
DEBRA: It is illegal. The Federal Trade Commission, there’s something called the ‘Truth in Advertising’. It’s a law in America that you cannot claim something that is not true. You cannot do that.
All of these products, if somebody wanted to actually enforce this, all of these products could be sued and be demanded that they be taken off the market, relabeled, et cetera, et cetera because the law in America says that you cannot put something on a label that is not true.
Now, is that actually true? No, as we see right here and many, many, many other examples. There are manufacturers making claims unverified, unsubstantiated claims all the time. But there is a law. It’s illegal to do this.
DEBRA: Yes, Debra. That’s such an excellent point. I would say this. In my personal experience, what I have observed is the majority, the majority of the product being sold in the personal care marketplace that claim to be organic are absolutely not. That’s the scary thing.
And regarding the Federal Trade Commission, absolutely! We have made complaints to them and it’s very sad to me because the Federal Trade Commission has declined to oversee and do any enforcement in this particular area.
There was just a new article that just came out today that was an interview through PBS about the organic personal care situation and they mentioned in their article (and this is a quote), “The Federal Trade Commission normally investigates deceptive claims, but the agency demured in its Green Guides published in 2012.”
And then I’m going to add in quotes, “to investigate personal care organic claims because” they said, “enforcement of organic claims on non-food products could duplicate USDA duties.” So they’re not doing anything.
DIANA KAYE: I know!
DEBRA: The point is not that they need to enforce organic claims. The point is they need to enforce truth in advertising.
DIANA KAYE: Yes!
DEBRA: That is a different thing. We’re not asking the FTC to be an organic certification organization. We’re asking them to simply enforce truth in advertising.
DIANA KAYE: Exactly! And we have not been able to get them to do that. I mean, there are countless – you know about my collection. You’ve heard about it. I can’t even keep up with it because I have different searches that come in. They come in to my mailbox every single day, new product coming out, new companies because wow! They see that “If I can get away with it and nothing is going to happen, why not?”
I wouldn’t do that, Debra, you wouldn’t do that, but we’re not like all these other people.
DEBRA: Right. No, I know, I know.
DIANA KAYE: …who are looking to cash in. This is why I’m saying it’s such a scary thing for the consumer who isn’t even aware of this because they’re trusting that there are government laws and agencies in place to protect them and really, the reality is we don’t have that.
So that’s why the work you’re doing, Debra, it’s so important to try to get this message out there to folks that you cannot trust. This is so sad, but you cannot trust what is printed on 10,000 bottles.
DEBRA: I totally agree with you. I totally agree. And I mentioned earlier during research to find an unscented aftershave this week. Half of the products (like I just searched for ‘unscented aftershave’) and I got on forums where people were discussion shaving, shaving aficionados and people who are interested in that kind of thing.
Anyway, there actually were a post where people are talking about different brands of unscented aftershave. And so I made a list of them. There were probably a handful. They were being recommended over and over. There was only one that I could find an ingredients list for.
Now, I want to say that I commend that a lot of manufacturers now are putting their ingredients list on their website. So if you hear about a product, you can go check out what are the ingredients. But on these unscented aftershaves, I couldn’t find the ingredients. I would have to go buy the product some place, but they’re being sold with no ingredients list.
And so I would say if you’re buying something online, you look for the ingredients list. In fact, on Terressentials – I’m assuming you still have this. I haven’t looked for it in a while. But you have a whole glossary of cosmetic ingredients, right? You still have that? Yes, you’ve had that for a long time.
DIANA KAYE: Yes, we do.
DEBRA: Yes, you’ve had that for a long time.
DIANA KAYE: Yes, we do. And it needs to be expanded dramatically. So you mentioned the shaving product and you’re mentioning the unscented one. This is so interesting because this product that I was talking about earlier that makes the claim on the front “no SLS, parabens, synthetic fragrances or colorants” and yet on the back of the label, there’s an ingredient called phenoxyethanol. Phenoxyethanol is a preservative, but it also has a rose fragrance and has been known as ‘Rose Ether’.
DIANA KAYE: It’s typically used in personal care products to give a rose-like effect because rose is so expensive. It’s so difficult to get a rose essential oil and extremely difficult to get one as organic.
We’re talking that if the public wanted to buy 16 ounces of rose oil, they would be paying probably $14,000 for 16 ounces.
So let me tell you, you can bet, you are not going to be getting real rose oil and a body care product that you’re washing down the train. I don’t care if you paid $10 a bottle or if you pay $30 a bottle, they’re not going to be giving you that in any kind of a shampoo, conditioner or body wash product because it’s too expensive.
So in this particular case, they’ve not only made their bold, organic claim as part of their company name, but they’re also saying “no fragrances, no synthetic fragrances” and yet there is one.
Actually, part of the other ingredient list, one of the other words on this ingredient list is ‘parfum’ and parfum is clearly…
DEBRA: Well, excuse me, that’s fragrance.
DIANA KAYE: Yes! Yes, exactly. So this label is a mess, the ingredients listing on this product and yet the word ‘organic’ is huge on the front. And then it makes these other claims.
So people today, there’s been a lot of hype surrounding sodium lauryl sulfate, which is only just one of 3500 different detergents that are out there. So here’s my thing, big deal! You got rid of sodium lauryl sulfate, what other thing did you put in there. And oh, yes, so you’re not using parabens? Well, what other even less tested, more toxic kinds of preservatives are you using in your product.
DEBRA: I need to interrupt you because we only have less than 30 seconds left.
DIANA KAYE: Oh, no!
DEBRA: So I want to have time to say thank you for being on the show. We’re going to have you on again. We’re going to keep talking about this because you just have so much experience and there’s so much to learn.
I’ll give you one second to say goodbye.
DIANA KAYE: Thank you! It’s been great and I appreciate the opportunity to help educate the public and teach people about what organic means.
DEBRA: That’s it! Thanks! This is Toxic Free Talk Radio. I’m Debra Lynn Dadd. Be well.