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2 "Additive-free cosmetics "are they really safe?

Product safety has always been an important p rerequisite for cosmetics. This is becoming even more so with the recent surge of people that have sensitive skin. That may be why we see phrases such as "additive-free" being used everywhere in the cosmetic world today.


To me, it seems as if a majority of people regard the phrase "additive-free" as meaning "safe." However, are "additive-free cosmetics" really safe ? What does "additive-free" mean, anyway?

In Asia, advertisements using the phrase "additive-free cosmetics" are quite common. "Additive-free" literally means "not added", just as it implies. Thus, when manufacturers use phrases such as "fragrance-free cosmetics" or "colorant-free cosmetics," we understand what they are implying: fragrance and colorants were not added to the product.

However, as I just mentioned, in Asia we are exposed to a large volume of cosmetic products and advertisements that are only labeled as being "additive-free".
If we go by our previous example, if only "additive-free cosmetics" is written on the packaging, it has to mean that nothing has been added as an ingredient to the product! It's nonsense to advertise that a product "does not contain anything." So what does the phrase "additive-free" mean?

Before a change in regulations, what "additive-free cosmetics" used to mean in Japan was it did not contain "ingredients that require labeling by law", also known as specified ingredients. Proper companies did label "no specified ingredients added" on relevant products, but many others chose to label their products as only "additive-free." Only after inquiries from consumers would the latter companies explain that this meant that ingredients requiring labeling were not used.
Some manufacturers even put "labeling-required-ingredients-free" on the very corner of their leaflets in tiny print requiring a magnifying glass to read.

Today with a change in regulations, "full labeling" has become mandatory in Japan, and the term "specified ingredient" is no longer in use. Together with this change I had thought that dishonest labeling practices would decrease, but unfortunately "additive-free cosmetics" are still being advertised all over the country today.

Companies often make ridiculous requests asking me to develop "additive-free cosmetics" for them. Every time these proposals come to me, I have to explain to them what the term really means. These cosmetic manufacturers seem to have the wrong notion that their products will give consumers an impression of being "safe" by claiming to be "additive-free", and as a result improve their sales. Some companies even purposely mislead users through their ads; an act prohibited by the PAL (pharmaceutical affairs law). It is upsetting to know that the numbers of such companies aren't diminishing at all.

Thus, when you are choosing your personal cosmetics, you should refrain from buying products from manufacturers adopting this kind of approach to their advertisements. This is because if they are serious in their development of cosmetics, it's too embarrassing to advocate "additive-free" products.
" Additive-free" or "so-and-so-free" do not equal safety. It only shows that certain substances are not used, and has little to do with safety. Please do not be lured by such misleading advertisements.

For this reason, I decided to commit myself to never developing products that could possibly mislead users.

3. What are Safety-Conscious Cosmetics? >>>

 

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4. Are preservatives (Parabens) dangerous?

5. A loophole in "Full IngrediLabeling"
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