Just because a product comes with an ingredient list doesn’t make it a transparent one. For instance, can one say for sure what phenoxyethanol in moisturiser does? Is there a difference between EDTA’s dozen-or-so different variations (disodium EDTA, calcium disodium EDTA…) And are nanoparticles really safe for use?
As beauty-lovers grow more conscious about what’s being put into their products, so do the companies making these products. The L’Oréal group’s new site, Inside Our Products, is the brand’s attempt at being transparent to their customers.
The site—which can be found here—lists out 21 of the most controversial ingredients found in cosmetics, such as sulphates, parabens, nanoparticles and various other wordy, intimidating additives.
Each page goes into detail on what each ingredient essentially is, where it comes from, and the common products that it’s used in. The site also addresses and debunks common questions about each ingredient.
For example, mica is a mineral used to create glittery makeup products. But it has also come under fire in recent years because it is often mined from socially and economically challenged regions, where the risk of child labour and unsafe working conditions are rife.
To address the controversy surrounding the ingredient, the site details the various reports, initiatives and pacts that the L’Oréal group is a part of to ensure that its mica is ethically sourced.
Aside from deep-diving into ingredients, they also touch on topics like animal testing and its alternatives, as well as regulation in the beauty industry.
The website also attempts to address ingredients that are often thought to cause disease, such as parabens, sulfates, silicones and aluminium salts.
Long-chain parabens are one example of an ingredient that has been branded as cancer-causing in some non-clinical studies. But according to L’Oréal, it is short-chain parabens that are used most widely in the beauty industry, which are deemed safe to use by the European Union’s Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety.
L’Oréal Group is one of the world’s biggest beauty conglomerates, and they possess a portfolio that reads like a laundry list of beauty powerhouses. Aside from makeup giants like Lancôme, Yves Saint Laurent Beauté, Urban Decay, Giorgio Armani Beauty, and Kiehl’s, the L’Oréal group also oversees major haircare brands such as Kérastase and Redken, amongst many more.
The only downside is that the site doesn’t list out the exact ingredients of each of the L’Oréal group’s products. Given the scale of the brand’s portfolio, it’s understandable that doing so would be an immense challenge—though if the point of the site is to promote transparency, then not listing the brand’s own product ingredients seems counterintuitive.
Still, the ingredients listed on the site aren’t exclusive to the L’Oréal group’s products, providing consumers with some handy information to use while shopping.