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So what products CAN we use?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Every time a report is released that reveals toxics in our consumer products, it's only natural to wonder what you can buy once you've learned what you can't.

In last week's Toxic Tub report, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics cautioned us that 61% of the kids' bath products they tested contained both formaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane - both probable carcinogens. Guess I know what not to buy.

Which brings me to a very important question: what can I buy if I want safe bath products for my kids? Good question for our Skin Deep database, which has a useful, easy-to-use Parents Buying Guide. This safety guide to children's personal care products includes better and best picks in nine products:

  1. Shampoo and conditioner
  2. Body wash and liquid soap
  3. Toothpaste
  4. Sunscreen
  5. Babywipes
  6. Lotion and moisturizer
  7. Diaper cream
  8. Baby powder
  9. Play make-up

What do we mean by better and best? We consider better products those that are easy to find but may still contain some ingredients to avoid. We consider best products those that are free of ingredients to avoid but may be hard to find.

Get the guide. You can download a 1-page summary on our For Parents resource page, or you can make it interactive and head straight to the Parents Buying Guide on Skin Deep. Either way, you'll be on your way to finding safer products for your kids.

What about those products I already have? Our Skin Deep database can help with that, too. Simply enter your product and assess its hazard rating - remembering that most ingredients are untested (ugh), so there is often a data gap that leaves a lot of unknowns. But understanding that a high hazard score definitely does contain ingredients to avoid and a low hazard score with a low data gap likely is safer because it contains fewer toxic chemicals and few unknowns.

More great Skin Deep tools. Another excellent feature of Skin Deep is that if your specific product isn't included, you can add it by entering its ingredient information once you have signed up as a user. And finally, there's a terrific FAQ page in Skin Deep that can really help you navigate the database easily and successfully.