While searching the #CleanBeauty hashtag on Instagram, I found there’s an astonishing 1.7M post associated with it. In fact, #CleanBeauty has more post than #OrganicBeauty. Well, what exactly does Clean Beauty mean? The definition of Clean Beauty differs from company to company. However, the consensus is Clean Beauty is the offering of products that are non-toxic, safe and efficacious. This includes offering consumers ingredient transparency and ensuring product safety. This doesn’t mean that a product is all natural or organic, but rather proven to be safe for use. According to Statista, this segment of the beauty industry is expected to reach 22 Billion Dollars by 2024 and is growing at a 9% CAGR.1
Evolution of Transparency
There’s a popular misconception that the Beauty Industry isn’t regulated. While industry professionals know this is a fallacy, consumers often believe this misconception. In recent years, this has grown, and consumers have become skeptical of certain ingredients in personal care products.
Organizations such as EWG, USDA Organic, Whole Foods Market Premium Body Care and NON GMO Project have benefited from this movement by offering their seal of approval on bottles and packaging.2
TODAY spoked with a representative from the Personal Care Products Council about questionable ingredients and here’s their response, “Personal care products remain one of the safest product categories regulated by the FDA. The industry takes its responsibility for product safety very seriously. Consumers can continue to use the personal care products they have trusted and relied on for more than 100 years.”2
Even still, there’s a heightened consumer demand for transparency and it looks like it’s here to stay.
How to Keep Transparency and Integrity
The Clean Beauty movement isn’t focused on natural ingredients and this is important to keep in mind when developing Clean products.
Creating a list and policy of ingredients you aim to not include in formulations and why is key. Consumers are researching ingredients more now than ever and are calling for increased transparency.
Major retailers have adopted their own Clean Beauty standard. In June 2018, Sephora announced their “Clean at Sephora” seal and their website states, “This seal means formulated without parabens, sulfates SLS and SLES, phthalates, mineral oils, formaldehyde, and more (www.sephora.com). This allows consumers to easily identify clean products in-store and on their website.
In March 2019, Target launched their Clean Icon for Personal Care products. Their icon represents products that are formulated without certain ingredients. Target’s Clean Icon consist of products formulated without propyl-parabens, butyl-parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, formaldehyde-donors, nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs), Oxybenzone, SLES, retinyl palmitate, hydroquinone, triclosan, triclocarban, BHA or BHT (www.Target.com).
It’s safe to say #CleanBeauty is morphing into the new standard of beauty. It will no longer be an option, but rather an obligation.
1. Statista Research Department (2016). Forecasted market size of the natural and organic beauty industry in 2016 and 2024 (in billion U.S. dollars)
2. Thomas, B. (2018). What is 'clean beauty'? Here's what you need to know