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Why are certificates used? (2 min read)

Respected certificates make it easier to make a responsible purchasing decision.

Why are certificates used?

Simply put, reliable certificates make it easier to make responsible purchasing decisions. If a consumer wants to use responsible cosmetics, the easiest way is to start by examining whether the entire product range is properly certified. Buyers should note that there are many brands on the market where some products are certified while others are not. If a brand does not have a certificate, the naturalness can be determined from the list of ingredients. For example, propellants are included in the list of banned environmentally harmful ingredients in certified natural cosmetics. Only air, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and argon are allowed as gases. Other typical cosmetic ingredients that cannot be present in certified natural cosmetics include synthetic fragrances, colorants, and preservatives.

What can be seen from certificates?

Product ranges can have different certificates. Here are a few examples of well-known and reputable certificates:

COSMOS Natural certification requires that a product contains at least 95% natural ingredients. COSMOS Organic certification also requires that at least 95% of the product's ingredients are organic. Cosmos certifications also consider the direct and indirect environmental impacts of packaging. The Vegan Society's Vegan flower logo guarantees that the product does not contain animal-derived ingredients. Demeter is a mark that indicates biodynamic cultivation. The Cruelty Free certification is a mark of the Cruelty Free International organization. It requires that the product has not been tested on animals. B Corp certification ensures that all aspects of a company's operations, from production chains and raw materials to working conditions, chosen charities, and employee benefits, are responsible, transparent, and traceable.

How can a product range obtain a certificate?

In certified natural cosmetics, an independent party verifies the product ingredients and manufacturing methods, which may involve inspections and surprise visits to production facilities. Products that meet the criteria are allowed to use the logo granted by the certifier. The handling of products, production facilities, the environmental sustainability of manufacturing, and the recyclability of packaging also affect the certification process. The formulation of a product must be done according to a precise list of ingredients, which excludes thousands of commonly used cosmetic ingredients due to their potential adverse effects. When assessing adverse effects, human beings, the environment, water systems, animals, and biodiversity are taken into account. This is often a lengthy and demanding process because all products need to be evaluated and their long-term effects determined.

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