Natural or NOT!

In March if this year the results of a study commissioned by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), a watchdog group, was released.  This study assessed levels of a carcinogen in leading “natural”, “organic” and conventional brands of personal care and household cleaning products.  The full press release and a copy of the follow-up testing results can be found and downloaded at: along with a fact sheet on petrochemical carcinogen 1,4-dioxane.

I was happy to see that improvements have been made over the last 2 years and that some of the large companies are working with groups like OCA to make those improvements.  The test results include products produced by companies like Clorox, Whole Foods (whom I loveeeee by the way), Body Essence, Dial, Garnier Fructis, Head and Shoulders, Palmolive Pure + Clean, and Long’s to name a few!  Some of the leading brands with products testing at the highest levels for the carcinogen 1,4-dioxane were Dial, Palmolive, Head & Shoulders, and Body Essence. Legal notices have been served to Mrs. Meyers Clean Day Liquid Dish Soap (who had the highest levels of the carcinogen at an alarming 204 parts per million, ten times higher than any other product’s current results in the study), Dial and others.

1,4-dioxane is “known to the State of California to cause cancer” and thanks to the efforts of watchdog groups like OCA, manufacturers are being held accountable for introducing this hazardous chemical into products that come into contact our skin.  Skin is your body’s largest organ.  Products placed on the skin can penetrate the skin’s outer layer to reach the cell-creating layers beneath.  As consumers, we need to pay attention to what’s in the products we put on our skin.  So read your labels, chose natural and/or organic when you can and understand what’s Natural or NOT!


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