Green Products, A New Beginning?
Companies have been labeling their products as green for many years. Because of the development of greenwashing the motivation to buy and label products as green has been very prevalent for companies and consumers. The market for green and sustainable products is still growing. Part of the worldwide growth of the cosmetic sector is partially driven by the impact of green products (Cervellon 122). However, since there is no governing body actually regulating what is actually in cosmetics. Because of this, when a product is labeled as “vegan” or “natural” or “organic, there is no way to know if it is actually true or not, since the FDA cannot check (Healthy Cosmetics). In order to help with this, the Environmental Working Group (EWA) has produced lists of what ingredients to avoid for certain products, and certain brands that produce safe products. The EWA also states that, on average, women use 12 beauty products per day, and men use 6 (Top Tips).
Even though the products being consumed may be green, the priority when consuming these products is not always the environment. One study found that the main reasons consumers buy green beauty products is to benefit their own health (Cervellon). Many consumers see buying green products as a way to individualize their responsibility, and they think that buy buying green beauty products they are doing their part to help and, therefore, can live unsustainably in other areas of their lives (Cervellon).
Despite some of these negatives associated with green beauty products, the development of the industry is promising for the future of environmentally friendly products. The fact that the sustainable industry is continuing to grow shows that consumers are advocating for products that are good for both themselves and the environment. Popular magazines such as Allure have begun to run features on products that are good for people, the environment, and the companies are run by women. There are also known ways to reduce the use of toxins, such as microplastics, from products. An example of this is simply using natural minerals in products instead of microbeads, as this is what was used before they were invented (Guerranti et al. 1). This is a very promising sign for the future of beauty products, amd hopefully this industry will continue to grow. With this growth, products that are healthy for humans, the environment, and those who work in the industry will begin to become the norm.