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The Truth About Honest Beauty's Cosmetics

Reviewed by Marta September 28, 2015 4 Comments

Jessica Alba’s line of baby, household and personal care products has been feeling the heat from sunburned users of The Honest Company sunscreen, not to mention a less than squeaky clean verdict on the hand sanitizers and dish soap. So when The Honest Company came up with a cosmetic line I was curious to see if it would live up to Ms Alba’s mission to “reduce toxic chemicals.”

Mostly, I would say yes. Honest Beauty’s face, lip and eye makeup have more than their fair share of botanical extracts and natural oils and they are “made without parabens, phthalates, paraffins, formaldehyde carriers, PEGs, steareth-n, propylene glycol, butylene glycol, petrolatum, mineral oil, chemical sunscreens, or synthetic fragrances”. But they are not entirely toxin free and there are some controversial ingredients.

I looked at three Honest Beauty products (my review is based entirely on the ingredients list): Everything Tinted Moisturizer SPF20 ($28), Lip Gloss ($18), and the Everything Cream Foundation ($30).

Their Everything Tinted Moisturizer SPF20 has a zinc oxide mineral sunscreen and plenty of nice extracts such as chamomile and ginger, oils from passion flower and sesame are a nice touch as is the natural preservative made from radish root. Less welcome is sodium benzoate. This preservative has unfortunately earned Ecocert backing. I don’t really understand why since there are serious concerns that it destroys DNA and is carcinogenic when combined with vitamin C.

Emulsifiers, emollients, surfactants are all benign (although some may be helping the over use of plantation coconuts and deforestation). A couple, such as polyhydroxystearic acid, have raised concerns about bioaccumulation and, as a result, are restricted in Canada.

The Lip Gloss has the odd solvent such as ethylhexyl hydroxystearate, but they are without safety issues. A safe mineral oil substitute is used, hydrogenated polyisobutene. Ammonium Glycyrrhizate is a salt from licorice and is used as a stabilizer. While there’s not much to love except some pomegranate, there’s nothing to dislike

The same is almost true of the Cream Foundation. There are a couple more things to love with jojoba oil and mareigold and chamomile extracts. Unfortunately sodium benzoate mars what would otherwise be a clean bill of health.

Ok, so there are some things that purists won’t like and I personally like my color cosmetics to offer up more in the way of skincare. But I have to admit that Honest Beauty pretty much lives up to the company’s mission statement.

  • June 21, 2016

    by Tasha

    The honest company has been in the news too much to be comfortable with. While some of the products may not have toxins or questionable ingredients, I am glad I found a company that is better and cheaper than the honest company. I still get my essentials delivered to my door and have many more incentives than they offer. Not to mention, they've only been around for 6 years.... I don't trust that, compared to one that's been around for over 30.... But that's just me....

  • October 2, 2015

    by Marta

    I have taken a look at the baby products including the diaper rash cream, salve and bottom wash. They all look great with no red flag ingredients. There's a slight reservation about the wash as it has the salt of phytic acid as phytic is a mineral blocker and is used cosmetically as a skin whitener. However, the salt form seems to be used as a chelating agent (dispersing heavy metals that can accumulate in water) and so probably a good thing.

  • October 1, 2015

    by Anne-Gaelle Rabaud

    I use the face and body lotion on my little twins. I am interested to get your opinion on this product.
    If not safe, what other cream would you recommend for their little soft skin?
    Or shall I just go for a simple almond oil?
    Thank you so much

  • October 1, 2015

    by Kemoy

    Thanks for this review! My sister recently had a baby; all of my niece's personal care products are from this brand. I am curious to know your thoughts on their most popular personal care items . In addition to your favorite baby skincare products.

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