The 'Greenwashing Game' - Are You Playing?
September 01, 2018
Ah yes, the 'Greenwashing Game'. Is this a game you participate in unknowingly every day? Is it really a game or more of a ruse of the chemical industry? My take on greenwashing is that it is the act of making something appear environmentally friendly and non-toxic when in fact it’s not. Another way to describe it is, Spin. Greenwashing campaigns are nothing more than highly deceptive marketing techniques employed by traditionally environmentally controversial industries, kind of like a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
An excellent example of Greenwashing is the use of an ingredient called propanediol. It is used in many green and eco-friendly products. Sounds pretty safe don’t you think? Read on a bit further and judge for yourself what this ingredient really is.
You may know propanediol as its other chemical name, propylene glycol. If you work as an auto mechanic then you're familiar with its chemical cousin, anti-freeze. The beauty and personal care product industry loves this ingredient because it has so many different applications. Kind of like an all-in-one key element that gives chemical companies more bang for their buck so to speak. And you guessed it, propylene glycol is a suspected xenoestrogen and potentially linked to infertility due to its glycol ether component.
Some companies claim that 1,2-propanediol is different than propylene glycol, but the reality is they are synonyms according to PubChem. Propylene glycol has been experiencing a backlash from consumers, so many companies are exchanging propanediol for propylene glycol. Sadly, all they're really doing is creating a smoke screen for marketing and sales purposes.
Anti-Freeze in Beauty Products?
So what does propanediol do for your hair and skin besides disrupt your hormones? Propanediol is a great humectant (aka a moisturizer), an excellent antibacterial, a solvent and an additive to fix the scent in fragranced products.
The sad truth is, only a few companies produce genuine, natural, eco-friendly products. Anyone can plaster the terms organic and natural on household cleaner labels and/or personal care products due to the loose nature of labeling laws. Many brands marketed as natural use high concentrations of synthetic chemicals with a minor percentage of natural ingredients, and so the Greenwashing Game continues.
What Can You Do?
Rather than trusting the word natural on the front of the container, flip the package over and read the ingredient list to discover what's really in your natural product. Learn how the ingredient rates on my Bonnie's Answers page or read my blog series The 7 Deadly Estro-Sins to learn other helpful tips.
At Zero Xeno we hold our own products and ingredients to the same strict standards we hold others to. We formulate, manufacture and package our xenoestrogen-free line to be free of known xenoestrogens. Our goal is to lead by example, in the hope that other companies will follow suit so natural products will once again contain natural ingredients.
Join The Zero Xeno Movement today!
by Bonnie Penner