Safe and sustainable personal care products
Are you looking for ingredients that meet standards for clean, conscious or blue beauty or requirements for a specific label or certificate?
Whether it is a bio-based polymer derived from corn that allows flexibility in hair care styling, a high performing bio-derived and readily biodegradable SPF booster, or a sensory enhancer in a renewable carrier, Dow offers a suite of different ingredients that meet the demands of conscious customers.
But what does sustainability mean? And what does each label certify? Below you find descriptions for different labels and certificates.
The ‘clean beauty’ phenomenon is becoming even more prevalent as consumers seek cosmetic product solutions that are safer for themselves and the planet. With this emphasis, they’re scrutinizing the labels on their cosmetic products in search of ones that are composed of natural and organic ingredients derived from plants, minerals, and microscopic organisms. ISO 16128 Part 1: Definitions for ingredients– a framework from the International Standard Organization that provides guidelines on the content of these products – promotes a wider selection of natural and organic materials, encouraging innovation throughout the formulation process.
7 ingredient categories and guidelines of ISO 16128:
- Natural Ingredients: All components of ingredients are obtained from naturally occurring materials (plants, animals, fungi, microbes). Extracts are included, but chemical modifications to natural products are prohibited under this category.
- Natural Mineral Ingredients: Naturally occurring inorganic compounds.
- Organic Ingredients: All components of ingredients are obtained from organically farmed or harvested sources, as defined by the local laws (i.e. FDA). Extracts are included, but chemically modified products are prohibited.
- Derived Natural Ingredients: At least 50% of the molecular weight (or carbon content) of the ingredient is derived from a natural source (plants, animals, fungi, microbes) using allowed chemistries (see the Annex B of ISO 16128-1 Standard). For ingredient, this is defined by the Natural Origin Index*.
- Derived Mineral Ingredients:
a. Chemically processed inorganic substances which have the same final composition as a naturally occurring material.
- Derived Organic ingredients: All components are either organic or natural, and do not contain any fossil fuel components.
- Non-natural ingredients: Ingredients that are greater than or equal to 50 % by molecular weight of fossil fuel origin or other ingredients which do not fall into one of the other categories mentioning above.
*Natural Origin Index: This can be calculated on a scale of 0-1 by considering the natural origin and chemical transformations for a single chemical.
- 1 if the ingredient is fully natural (including solvents). Water is considered a natural solvent in finished products, but not in ingredients.
- Between 0.5 and 1 if the ingredient has partially natural components, calculated by renewable carbon, natural origin molecular mass, or percentage of natural origin weight.
- 0 if the index is calculated to be less than 0.5, or if a prohibited reaction is used.
For an ingredient that is a mixture, the natural content reported is the average of the natural origin indices weighted by content.
For more information, please visit: www.iso.org
Trust is key when certifying the natural contents of a product, with consumers seeking verification that their purchase promotes responsible use of natural resources, respect of biodiversity and environmentally friendly production among other concerns. With nearly 30 years of experience auditing and certifying organic products in more than 130 countries, ECOCERT is a specialist in the certification of sustainable practices. COSMetic Organic and natural Standard (COSMOS) label on products is obtained though certification process. This certification enables the labelling of natural or organic cosmetics and allows organic or natural cosmetics to be commercialized worldwide.
Two different labels exist for COSMOS Cosmetics products:
COSMOS NATURAL: no requirement to use a minimum level of organic ingredients
COSMOS ORGANIC: requirements to use a minimum level of organic ingredients.
The COSMOS certification process of the cosmetic products can be facilitated if the raw materials used for the products are already “COSMOS Certified” (for organic certified ingredients) or “COSMOS Approved” (for natural/non-organic raw materials) by authorized certification bodies such as ECOCERT Greenlife.
For more information, please visit: https://www.ecocert.com/en/certification-detail/natural-and-organic-cosmetics-cosmos
As ethical consumption becomes a growing priority, consumers are paying even closer attention to where their products are sourced, both from an environmental and labor perspective. Palm oil cultivation can have negative impacts when not sourced ethically, causing deforestation and displacing local communities.
To help minimize the impact of palm oil cultivation on the environment and communities where it originates, the Round Table of Sustainable Palm Oil (or RSPO) created standardized environmental and social criteria—including providing a living wage, implementing agricultural practices that can minimize environmental impact, and contributing to community development—which companies must comply with in order to produce Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO).
For more information, please visit: https://rspo.org
Products composed of biological components offer substantial environmental benefits, driving consumption from renewable sources and minimizing dependence on finite resources. As defined by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), biobased products are derived from plants and other renewable agricultural, marine, and forestry materials. Biobased products include diverse categories such as lubricants, detergents, inks, fertilizers, and bioplastics. This definition of biobased products does not include food, feed, or fuel.
To date, USDA has identified minimum biobased content standards for 139 categories of biobased products. Many qualified and certified biobased products are listed in the BioPreferred Program Catalog.
For more information, please visit: https://www.biopreferred.gov/BioPreferred/faces/pages/BiobasedProducts.xhtml
Vegan products appeal to a wide variety of consumers. Dow defines a product as vegan if it does not contain any animal-sourced ingredients (referring to any species in the animal kingdom), including any raw materials or additives derived from meat, fish, eggs, dairy products, honey or processed foods containing ingredients derived from animals. Dow takes measures even further to minimize any cross-contamination potential as far as is reasonably practical.
As Muslim populations continue to grow across the world as cosmetic consumers, it’s crucial to offer a wide range of products that meet halal criteria so they have equal access to high quality beauty care products. Halal cosmetics are produced and composed of ingredients permissible under Islamic law, regulating aspects such as animal treatment and alcohol content.
- Halal (not certified): This product has not been certified for halal status by an authorized certification body. However, Dow has reviewed the raw materials and sourcing based on vendor supplied information. Please contact us to obtain the halal statement on this product.
- Halal certified: An authorized certification body in a country has certified this specific manufacturing site, and several of the products produced in this facility have been certified halal.
Biodegradability—the capacity for biological degradation of materials by living organisms down to base substances—is an integral aspect of building a sustainable future.
The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has collected about 150 of the most relevant internationally agreed testing methods used by government, industries, and independent laboratories to evaluate the safety of the substances for the intended applications. This includes Technical Guidelines (TG) OECD 301 and OECD 302 —aerobic biodegradation test determining the biodegradability of a material. According to OECD test guidelines, a substance’s biodegradability can be classified in the following ways.
- Readily biodegradable: The biodegradation is greater or equal to 60% (1) within 28 days according to TG OECD 301.
- Inherent, ultimate biodegradability: The biodegradation is greater than or equal to 60% (1) within 60 days, according to TG OECD 301 or biodegradation is greater than or equal to 70% according to TG OECD 302B.
- Inherent, primary biodegradability: The biodegradation is greater than or equal to 20% but lower than 60% (1) within 60 days according to TG OECD 301F or biodegradation is greater than or equal to 20% but lower than 70% according to TG OECD 302B.
(1) (as measured by CO2 production and/or oxygen uptake)
For more information and details on these classifications visit: https://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/environment/oecd-guidelines-for-the-testing-of-chemicals-section-3-degradation-and-accumulation_2074577x/datedesc#collectionsort
As discerning consumers increasingly seek information about the natural content of products, Dow is committed to transparency surrounding the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). According to the World Health Organization, GMOs can be defined as organisms (i.e. plants, animals or microorganisms) in which the genetic material (DNA) has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally by mating and/or natural recombination.*
Ingredients that Dow labels as non-GMO are either produced from non-GMO ingredients or are derived from minerals, such as silicones, making them inherently non-genetically modified due to their inorganic nature.
Protection of our natural resources promotes a sustainable future where biodiversity is preserved, ensuring future generations have accesses to resources, and supporting all life by maintaining ecological balance. The Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), is a global alliance of national forest certification systems. The international non-profit, non-governmental organization is dedicated to promoting sustainable forest management through independent third-party certification.
PEFC chain of custody certification provides independent verified assurance that the forest-based material contained in a product originates from sustainably managed forests. This recognition complements PEFC sustainable forest management certification, which helps ensure that forests are managed in line with stringent environmental, social and economic requirements.
For more information, please visit: https://www.pefc.org/for-business/supply-chain-companies
Whether driven by religious adherence or a desire for products that uphold stringent standards regarding ingredients, cleanliness and purity, demand for kosher products is on the rise and Dow is poised to help meet those needs with a wide range of products.
- Kosher (not certified): This product has not been certified for kosher status by an authorized certification body. However, Dow has reviewed the raw materials and sourcing based on vendor supplied information. Please contact us to obtain the kosher statement on this product.
- Kosher certified: An authorized certification body in a country has certified this specific manufacturing site, and several of the products produced in this facility have been certified kosher.