I have been using Neutrogena Face Scrub for years only to learn the disturbing ingredient that feels so good rolling around my face is plastic and creates a real environmental problem. Awhile ago, I stocked up on the stuff when I found it at a discounted price. Now, I need to throw all those tubes away which is really hard for me since they are unused. So, in my guilt, I did the only sensible thing and wrote to my senators, Kirsten Gillibrand http://www.gillibrand.senate.gov/contact/ and Charles Schumer http://www.schumer.senate.gov/contact/email-chuck protesting the microbead! You can do this too. The Story of Stuff Let’s Ban the Bead site has a great letter for you to copy and send. http://storyofstuff.org/movies/lets-ban-the-bead/
Cosmetic, body wash, toothpaste and nail polish companies use plastic microbeads in their products. You will note invigorating words on nature sounding labels like “scrub” and “exfoliating” to entice you towards a cleaner, smoother self. There’s nothing natural about the ingredients polyethylene and polypropylene though. They are the plastic microbeads that become plastic soup in our oceans.
The following brands/companies contain microbeads in their products as of February 2015:
- Aveeno/Johnson & Johnson
- AXE/Johnson & Johnson
- Acne Free
- Bath & Body Works
- Biore Skin Care/Kao USA, Inc
- Clean & Clear/Johnson & Johnson
- Clinique/Estee Lauder
- Crest/Proctor & Gamble*
- CVS Brand/CVS Pharmacy
- Equate Beauty/Walmart
- Every Man Jack/Every Man Jack, Inc
- Heel To Toe
- Kate Someriville
- Laura Mercier
- Mur Ad/ Mur Ad, Inc
- Neutrogena/Johnson & Johnson
- Olay/Proctor & Gamble
- Peter Thomas Roth
- Rite Aid Renewal/Rite Aid Pharmacy
- Spa Touch
- Tree Hut/Naterra Int.
- Unilever Products Dove, Vaseline, Pond’s
- Up & Up/Target Brand
- some Vistoria’s Secret Brand Products
- some Walgreens Brand Products
This list was initiated by Plastic Soup Foundation and North Sea Foundation. www.beatthemicrobead.org Some companies on the list are getting press for phasing out or promising to phase out their microbeaded products by 2017. Beat the Microbead is an organization that updates its international product lists constantly, flagging them red, orange or green for their progress, and will send you an app that helps you make good choices at the store.
*Crest Toothpaste Products became the hot topic on ABC News when the little blue specks were sighted on patient’s teeth during their dental appointments. Investigations discovered Proctor & Gamble puts microbeads in their Crest Products. I guess they think your toothbrush needs help exfoliating your teeth!
How You Can Help:
- Contact your senators. Its easy. Just Google Senator and your State. The Story of Stuff has a letter all ready written for you to send. Their push and your support can create a greater impact if we act all at once.
- Read the content labels on products you buy. Avoid polyethylene and polypropylene.
- Click on www.beatthemicrobead.org to get the app! It IDs products with microbeads in real time before you buy.
- Beat the Microbead also has a letter you can use when you send back offensive products to the company that makes them.
- Look for natural ingredients such as crushed walnut shells, sea salt, coconut husk and coffee for your face and body scrubs.
- A teaspoon of bicarbonate soda mixed with a little warm water makes a great face scrub.
Until next week:
Don’t let this become this!