A recent report by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) reveals many beauty and body care products use the word “organic” without bearing the green “USDA Organic.” Using an independent testing lab, OCA analyzed various “organic” and “all-natural” beauty and body care products for residues of one toxic chemical, 1,4-dioxane and found it in many of them. See the article on pages  24-25 for a more in-depth report on the results of the study.

In response, Willy Street Co-op has posted a small sign by each product that tested positive for dioxane; these signs will direct interested members to a binder of information so that members can make an informed decision about buying these products. These signs will remain up for at least thirty days, after which time member support for these products will be reevaluated. The Co-op determines which products to carry based on member requests, where they are made (locally is the preference), whether they are natural, the price, availability and how much room we have for a new product in that category. Availability aside, it’s our members who decide what we continue to carry in our store.

To further support the use of “clean” products, there will be 15% off all Aubrey Organics products (hair, skin, and body care) as well as the book A Consumer’s Dictionary of Cosmetic Ingredients by Ruth Winter, M.S.

How to avoid 1,4-dioxane in your personal care products

  • Some of the products found to contain 1,4-Dioxane: JASON Pure Natural & Organic, Giovanni Organic Cosmetics, Kiss My Face, Nature’s Gate Organics.
  • Remember that just because a personal care product labels itself with the words “organic” or “certified organic” doesn’t mean it meets any specified organic standards.
  • Look for products that are certified under the USDA National Organic Program (or a similar German program) and products that bear the “USDA Organic” seal.
  • Search product labels for ingredients with the following in their names to avoid products containing 1,4-Dioxane: myreth, oleth, laureth, ceteareth, any other eth, PEG, polyethylene, polyethylene glycol, polyoxyethylene, or oxynol.
  • In general, avoid products with unpronounceable ingredients to be sure to avoid synthetic toxins and carcinogens. -Organic Consumers Association

A Note from Nature’s Gate

CHATSWORTH, CA—In light of the recent controversy surrounding the presence of 1,4-dioxane in several natural product brands Paddy Spence, President of Nature’s Gate, has issued the following statement:

“Nature’s Gate is committed to manufacturing safe and effective personal care products and would never knowingly include ingredients that are proven to cause human harm. The FDA has reviewed levels of 1,4-dioxane in cosmetics and concluded that they do not present a hazard to consumers.

Based on the information from the study conducted by the Organic Consumers Association, we are reviewing all Nature’s Gate formulas to ensure their continued compliance with the best available scientific information and the interests of our customers.”