The Meaning of “Natural”

Earlier this month, a judge ruled that a lawsuit against Neutrogena can proceed. The plaintiff alleges that the labeling on many of Neutrogena’s sunscreen products – – all of them marketed as being for babies – – is misleading, since it claims to contain “naturally sourced” ingredients. The allegations state that the products actually contain irritating and unnatural chemicals and an antimicrobial agent. Read this article for more details.


I do realize that this kind of thing happens all of the time these days, unbeknownst to many. However, I’m sorry, every time I hear about another case where this has happened, I just cannot keep from thinking: WHY???? Why are these companies still doing this, day after day? How is it okay to intentionally mislead consumers into believing that this product is safe, ESPECIALLY for their babies!!! Just because the FDA does not have any laws whatsoever about the meaning of the words safe, organic, natural, and the like for personal care products does not mean that Americans should have one pulled over on them every time they turn down a personal care product store aisle!


Whew. Sorry. A-hem. At any rate, there is a line at the very end of the article that is very telling of where we, as a country, are with this issue, and it’s pretty sad, in my opinion: “Judge Wilson also declined to defer to an FDA determination on “natural” product claims, saying that such a ruling from the agency was not likely forthcoming.”


All I can say is that THIS is why I am passionate about educating consumers about reading labels. If we stop buying this stuff, eventually it will start to collect dust on the shelves. And if enough companies’ products collect enough dust, they will eventually have to consider the option of discontinuing these products. And if they want to continue to make money, as I’m fairly certain they will, they might actually consider the option of creating products without such toxic ingredients. It’s worth a try. Read your labels, folks! It does not matter what it says on the front of the bottle – – that is not regulated in the United States! What matters is what it says under “Ingredients:”. If you need help figuring out what to avoid, contact me directly. I can give you a great place to start.

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