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Dove

Reviewed by Copley September 14, 2009 3 Comments
Dove soap was launched in the United States in 1957, two years after Unilever acquired a soap factory in the Netherlands called De Duif (translation: "The Dove" in Dutch).

Manufactured in the United States, Ireland, Brazil, Germany, and the Netherlands, the Dove brand and trademark are owned by Unilever.

Positioned as a "beauty bar" rather than soap, Dove's cleansers have been advertised throughout history with the image of cream being poured into the beauty bar.

In 1979, a Pennsylvania dermatologist showed that Dove dried and irritated significantly less than ordinary soaps, spawning an aggressive marketing campaign by Unilever that succeeded in winning more than 24% of the market by 2003.

Company News/ Recent Launches:

Since starting the Dove Self-Esteem Fund in 2006, Dove has created a number of largely online-exclusive short films including Daughters, Evolution, Onslaught, and Amy.

Dove Visibly Smooth is the company's newest anti-perspirant/deodorant that minimizes the visual appearance of underarm hair over time in addition to 24-hour odor and wetness protection.

Dove recently introduced the Dove Cream Oil Shea Butter Body Lotion, which combines two powerful moisturizers.

Key Ingredients:

Glycerin in Dove body lotions, shampoos, and face creams

Aluminum Zirconium Tetrachlorohydrex GLY in Dove deodorants

Pro-Epil Complex in Dove Visibly Smooth anti-perspirant deodorant

TIA's Take:

Dove's primary ingredients are synthetic surfactants like sodium laureth sulfate and vegetable oil-based soaps such as sodium palm kernelate. Although Dove's products might be an improvement on traditional soaps in terms of moisturizing power, they are hardly pure, or particularly suited for sensitive skin. Chemicals like film-forming silicones, potentially carcinogenic petrolatum, and skin-sensitizing PEGs are common across all categories of Dove cosmetics. The ecotoxin tetrasodium EDTA and controversial preservatives like parabens and phenoxyethanol are everpresent. Dove's deodorants are made up of aluminum, which is suspected to cause breast cancer. Dove's face products are mediocre at best and offer little in the way of natural emollients or active ingredients. All in all, however, Dove's body moisturizers and soaps are superior to other drugstore options.
  • November 2, 2015

    by Marta

    Hi Uma, you will note that the article was written in 2009 and you are correct that the latest unscented formula of Dove soap is a little different. However, there are still some concerns. Sodium Lauroyl Isethionate is a sulfate-free surfactant (good), but may still be drying and irritating. Sodium tallowate is rendered beef fat, so vegans should be aware. Tetrasodium EDTA raises concerns about toxicity, although the CIR says it is not easily absorbed: https://www.truthinaging.com/ingredients/tetrasodium-edta

    But overall, Dove certainly seems to have cleaned up its act.

    Sodium Lauroyl Isethionate, Stearic Acid, Sodium Tallowate, Sodium Palmitate, Lauric Acid, Sodium Isethionate, Water, Sodium Stearate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Cocoate, Sodium Palm Kernelate (Palm Kernel Oil), Sodium Chloride, Tetrasodium EDTA, Tetrasodium Etidronate, Maltol, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891)

  • November 2, 2015

    by Uma

    There's no silicone, no sodium laurel sulfate,petrolatum, or Phenoxyethanol in dove soap. Especially in the unscented and sensitive skin versions. Are you people for real? This article is garbage

  • March 8, 2013

    by Anh

    brest cancer? are you sure that aluminiium causes that? lol
    yeahh im researching about everything so, i really hope everything here is all fact thanks alot

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