ruminating on “beauty…”

I’m curious to know how “pure, natural, and healthy” skin care manufacturers respond to questions from environmentalists and health advocates about their continued use of ingredients such as petroleum byproducts, imidazolidinyl urea and parabens. They address the issue as related to their affect on the human body (“Used in percentages far less than 1%, the risk of skin absorption from a topical product applied in such small amounts to limited areas of the body is extremely low…”), but not on how the ingredients are affecting the environment, including aquatic life.

Many ¬†companies also claim to be environmentally friendly (“Our goal is to provide consumers with safe and effective products and use recyclable materials whenever possible.”) How do they address proponents of the Precautionary Principle, in other words, “better safe than sorry…” Why wait for “conclusive studies” to discontinue using these ingredients, when many recent studies from independent researchers around the world raise concern and are advising caution?¬†I’ll go with the “better safe than sorry” philosophy, unless my life is being threatened…

Some companies will invite you to join the “2.5 billion dollar Anti-Age industry…” Yes, there’s lots of money in convincing women that aging is bad and wrinkles are ugly. But that’s a whole Pandora’s Box in itself. I would rather convince women that healthy skin and a sparkling, self-assured smile are beautiful, and wrinkles express character and a life well-lived.

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