The Benefits of Soil Association Certified Cosmetics
Tuesday, 3 September 2013 | Tricia
Why buy certified organic cosmetics?
It is wise to be careful what you put on your skin because it is the largest organ of your body and what you put on your skin in small amounts can be absorbed into your body. Harmful substances in cosmetics such as phthalates and parabens have been found to accumulate in the body causing health problems.
There are loads of ‘natural’, ‘botanical’ personal care products out there, decorated with lovely green leaves on the packaging. But these may not be any more natural the most chemical-rich products out there.
The often-surprising truth is that it’s totally legal for products to call themselves ‘natural’, and even ‘organic’, but may only contain a tiny percentage of organic or natural ingredients and still be full of unnatural harmful or toxic chemicals. These products might be shockingly misrepresented by their packaging and even brand name – but there’s nothing that can be done to change this. Jenny Collins of the Soil Association says that "The problem is widespread… Organic hair and beauty products aren't regulated in the same way as food, so things like parabens and petrochemicals are making it into supposedly organic items."
One way to know that the products you’re putting on your skin are really natural is to look out for the symbols of well-known certifications on each product’s packaging. I bet you’d recognise the Soil Association symbol if you saw it! This proves that the product you’re buying is uncompromisingly organic. See all our Soil Association certified products here...
So what does ‘Soil Association Certified’ really mean?
The Soil Association Certification is incredibly prestigious, and rightly so. To get your product certified, you have to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that your ingredients are truly organic, with no chance for contamination or slip-ups at any stage.
If you want to be Soil Association certified, every step of ordering, storing, manufacturing, packaging, labeling, and selling your products has to be thoroughly double-checked and documented. From inspecting your supplier’s own Certification, to keeping your organic ingredients absolutely separate from your non-organic ingredients, to only using organic methods of cleaning and sterilising your equipment…. It’s a seriously rigorous process. And to make sure every ‘i’ is being dotted and every ‘t’ crossed, the Soil Association themselves inspect your premises every year, to make sure their justifiably high standards are being met.
I know all about this because, I am proud to say, we are Licensed by the Soil Association. You can see our Certificate or Registration here and our certificate or registered products here.
Before a product can be certified
Before a single Suvarna product is certified, its formula, labeling, packaging, and production methods are thoroughly scrutinised. Packaging materials must be ethical and non-toxic. Label text must be ethically accurate, and in no way misleading. Production must be tightly controlled to prevent any non-organic ingredients getting into the product.
Sourcing perfect organic ingredients
Every single ingredient that goes into a Soil Association certified product gets the full work-over, by us and by the Soil Association themselves. The ingredient must be accompanied by a supplier’s certificate which shows it to be certified by Soil Association, or a similarly prestigious body like EcoCert or USDA. Anything organic that doesn’t have this certificate cannot be used in the making of our products.
Supporting the organic ethos
Where an organic version of an ingredient is completely unavailable (as is the case with vitamin E, for example), the ingredient’s source and manufacturing process is inspected, to make sure that it is not Genetically Modified or in any other way against the organic ethos.
Any ingredients which may have sustainability issues, such as argan oil, frankincense oil or rosewood oil, are thoroughly investigated before they are allowed to be used in our Certified Organic products. Even products that have another natural or organic certifications might not be up to the exceptionally high sustainability standards of the Soil Association.
How do you know whether a product is certified by the Soil Association?
Any product that is Soil Association Certified must have the soil association symbol on the packaging. You also can ask the manufacturer to show you their organic certificate.
Soil Association Certified Brands we sell are in this category here… This includes Essential Care Skin Care, It's Pure Organics hair colouring and conditioning products, Suvarna Skin Care, Pure & Soft cotton wool products, and Natra Care feminine hygiene products.
See this article about new research that shows organic crops to be more nutritious and highter in antioxidants.