victoria's-secret-pinkI am not a Victoria’s Secret kind of girl; their smalls are all too shimmery and frou-frou for my taste. I am clearly in a minority – you would not know there was a crisis in consumer spending by the throngs in my nearest VS. So I was hoping to be won over by something in beauty department. A line called Pink caught my eye as it claimed to be “natural, organic and 100% vegan – something you and the planet will love”.

The packaging – white recycled plastic with ‘hand-written’ labels – screams “I am clean, I am green”. Pity that the packaging guy didn’t work more closely with the formulator. Looking at the Energizing Body Lotion ($15), I’d say Mr Formulator didn’t get the green memo.

True, there’s some coffee, olive and three (organic) citrus extracts. Aloe vera and shea are good too. But there are some very dodgy ingredients as well, such as sodium benzoate, which is becomes carcinogenic if it encounters vitamin C, which I presume is lurking around as a result of all those citrus extracts.

I was most surprised to see iodopropynyl butylcarbamate. It is an allergan, according to a Danish study, and extremely toxic if inhaled (although it seems to be OK if eaten, if a study on rats fed iodopropynyl butylcarbamate for a month is anything to go by). It should be noted that iodopropynyl butylcarbamate easily penetrates the skin. Although the American cosmetic industry body, CIR) says this preservative is safe at low concentrations, it has been restricted in Europe. Specifically, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate is not to be used for oral hygiene and lip-care products, or in products intended to be used on a large part of the body, such as body lotion. And Victoria Secret's energizing body lotion would be a....?


Water, caprylic/capric trigylceride, glycerin, neopentyl glycol diheptanoate, hydrogenated polyisobutene, myristyl myristate, cetearyl alcohol, butylene glycol, dimethicone, glyceryl stearate, PEG-100 stearate, PEG-20 Stearate, phenoxyethanol, ammonium acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP copolymer, cetyl alcohol, fragrance, sodium benzoate, stearyl alcohol, disodium EDTA, shea butter, orange fruit extract, grapefruit extract, lemon fruit extract, macadamia seed oil, peppermint oil, grape seed oil, BHT, aloe vera, coffee seed extract, panthenol, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, octylodecanol, lecithin, arachidyl propionate, linoleic acid, linolenic acid, retinyl palmitate, tocopheryl acetate, citral, limonene, hydroxycitronellal, linalool, titanium dioxide.