I read a recent article published by Vox which described the growing mistrust of the beauty industry and consumer fears surrounding chemicals used to formulate beauty products. Harper’s Bazaar recently published an article which highlights a 2019 survey of over 1,000 women across the U.S. The survey revealed that 50% of women surveyed were already using clean beauty products and over 60% were willing to splurge on these agents. There is no wonder why we are seeing a rise in “natural” or “clean” beauty options which seek to meet the demand of the marketplace.
What Is Clean Haircare?
Clean haircare typically refers to products made without ingredients that have been associated with harmful health effects (i.e. parabens, BHT, synthetic fragrances). Similar to clean eating which avoids consuming processed foods with many ingredients, clean haircare focuses on a simple approach to formulation that prioritizes the health and wellbeing of the consumer and the environment. In many cases, these products are naturally derived and serve as alternatives to traditional haircare products which make up the vast majority of products on the market.
Why Does Clean Haircare Matter?
Unlike the European Union, which has banned or restricted over 1300 cosmetic ingredients, the U.S. has banned only 11 compounds. Many people are shocked to find out that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require approval of cosmetic products and ingredients, other than color additives before they enter the consumer market. There is limited oversight of the beauty industry so it is up to the consumer to gather the required knowledge and data to make an informed decision about what to use. This can be a huge challenge with so many products available for use and ever-growing ingredient lists which are hard to even pronounce. Having beauty and haircare brands that are willing to do this legwork for you helps to simplify the search for a product or brand that meets your needs.
How Are Retailers Responding To This Clean Haircare Trend?
According to the Global Wellness Institute, as of 2017 wellness has become a $4.2 trillion industry with over $1.1 trillion attributed to wellness-based beauty, personal care and anti-aging goods and services. There is no surprise that haircare brands and retailers do not plan to leave any of these potential earnings on the table. Popular cosmetic retailers, such as Sephora, have created a dedicated space for cleaner options online with others (e.g. Credo) expanding their online model to a store front that sells only clean beauty options. This shift in the marketplace is expected to continue to expand.
Should You Join The Clean Haircare Trend?
Labeling can be misleading at times and not all “clean” haircare products may meet your standards or may not offer a benefit that you personally value. It takes time to become familiar with newer product lines and even longer for you to find the right combo for your personal hair goals. A shift in a new direction, if desired, won’t happen overnight. The key is simply knowing what to look for as a consumer – science behind the beauty. After weighing benefits and risks you have to make a personal decision about what fits into your haircare goals and lifestyle. So, what should you do? Simply make sure that YOUR natural hair journey is personally designed for YOU.