Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Quick Safe Cosmetics Quiz

From Beth Anderson, Outreach Associate

How much do you know about the products you put on your body every day? What are the active & inert ingredients in your facial cleanser? How about your shampoo, sunscreen, and lotion??

Take the following quiz, developed by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, to see how savvy you are when it comes to the personal care products on your shelves! Pay close
attention to question 4 for links to safe cosmetics resources...

1) True or False: If a product says “natural” on the label, it must be safe.

Answer: False!

Since the government does not regulate cosmetics, companies can make any claim they want. Look for fewer ingredients overall and certified organic ingredients on labels.

2) If there is only a little bit of carcinogen or other chemical in a product, why does it matter?


A little bit adds up (more than one product a day, seven days a week, xx years)
- Personal care products are not our only exposure to toxic chemicals (work, car, cleaning products, food, air)

- Exposure to synthetic hormones during periods of development can have a big impact (fetus, infant, pre-puberty)

3) How many products does a woman in the US use on average each day?
A. 5
B. 12
C. 18

Answer: B—12 products with approximately 125 unique chemical ingredients

4) Name a resource for finding information on the safety of cosmetic products.

Answer: Skin Deep, or

The Skin Deep database rates products for safety on a scale 1 to 10. There are almost 30,000 products listed. also has other information about personal care products along with ideas for action.

For more information on safe cosmetics, take a look at the following web-based resources:
Made in the Image of God: Campaign for Safe Cosmetics
, from Earth Ministry’s partners at the National Council of Churches
Beauty at Any Cost resources from the YWCA
More Than Skin Deep by Judith Snyderman

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