When shopping for organic cosmetics, it can be easy to be fooled into believing a product is organic or natural, because it contains some organic or natural ingredients. But for a product to be certified as organic, it must have a minimum of 95% organic content. Many companies ‘greenwash’, which means they use conventional chemicals mixed with some organic/natural ingredients, then claim it to be organic. If you want to be 100% certain that you’re buying organic, these are the labels to look out for.
You can find the Soil Association label on food, beauty and cleaning products, amongst other things. A UK organisation, the Soil Association are campaigning for healthy soil, healthy people and a healthy planet. This is a great page they have explaining what to look for when choosing an organic product.
NATRUE is an international non-profit association committed to promoting and protecting Natural and Organic Cosmetics worldwide. NATRUE has 3 levels of certification, the initial benchmark being ‘100% natural’. Then two levels of organic certification. Organic certification level (95%+ organic ingredients and 100% natural) and Natural+Organic’ certification level (70%+ organic ingredients and 100% natural). Each product certified according to the NATRUE Label Criteria is unique and meets high standards.
Ecocert was the very first certification body to develop standards for natural and organic cosmetics. They have two labels, one for organic products and one for natural products. For both labels, Ecocert Standard imposes that a minimum of 95% of the total ingredients come from natural origin.
A German company, BDIH ensures that products marked with the BDIH “Certified Natural Cosmetics” seal use natural raw material such as plant oils, fats and waxes, herbal extracts and essential oils and aromatic materials from controlled biological cultivation or controlled biological wild collection. In addition to the careful selection of raw materials, the ecological impact of each product plays an important role.
COSMOS (COSMetic Organic Standard) is a Europe-wide private standard that was developed by five charters members: BDIH (Germany), Cosmebio (France), Ecocert Greenlife SAS (France), ICEA (Italy) and the Soil Association (Great Britain). ‘COSMOS ORGANIC’ or ‘COSMOS NATURAL’ will always appear right below the logo/mark of the responsible certifier or association.
All of these labels can be seen on products manufactured in Europe, and are names that you can trust when buying organic skincare, bodycare and makeup.