Buyer Beware

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Just about every week, we get contacted by a new skincare company to do a product review.  Do you see a lot of them on this website?  No.  That’s because we will not endorse a company that makes false claims and use ingredients that are not scientifically proven.  We are always on the lookout for great ingredients and formulations that are not too polluted with a plethora of nasty chemicals.  Are there products out there that are totally botanical, organic, and efficacious . . .  no. At least not in the way we see the use of skincare products (efficacious would be the key word in that last sentence).  Do the product lines we love have some nasty chemicals     . . . yes.  To achieve great (healthy) skin, you need a combination of natural and non-toxic synthetics. That is really hard to find in the marketplace!  And, there is only so much a topical product can do. There is not a miracle cream, lotion or potion that will change the structure of your skin. If it “changes” your skin, it is considered a drug and has to go through the FDA (think retinoids and chemical sunscreen actives).

Many of the skincare companies that ask us to do reviews make claims that simply aren’t true. Whether it be by the all natural and oh so powerful “plant stem cells” or by the high tech approach of using “human stem cells” . . . (more on the stem cell topic in a future blog post) . . . the claims are ridiculous. Stimulating cell regeneration? Boosting gene activity? The use of stem cells is a hot topic these days.

*A side note . . . the only human stem cells approved by the FDA at this point are those from “cord blood”.  Companies using human stem cells in their topical products are making false claims. That’s not to say that some day this technology won’t evolve and produce evidence and results. Topically, that remains to be seen.  I spent a good amount of time on the phone with FDA (Biological, Drugs, and Food Safety & Applied Nutrition) prior to writing this blog.

Take a peek at what the FDA sent out to a large cosmetic company a couple years ago in making claims that were extremely misleading . . .

http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/2012/ucm318809.htm

And more recently . . . (several companies are marketing the use of human stem cells)

http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/2014/ucm424920.htm

The FDA doesn’t have the man power to police the entire cosmetic industry.  And the cosmetic industry is at the bottom of their list.  We know that they have “enforcement activity” going on and certain areas are under investigation as evidenced by these letters. And if people report negative side effects from the use of a product, the FDA will get involved.  Unfortunately, they won’t get involved if your “negative reaction” is simply less money in your bank account.  The claims and prices many companies are stating are ridiculous. And that is where you need to be aware.

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