In case you missed it, California recently made beauty history by signing Assembly Bill 2762, aka the Toxic-Free Cosmetics Act, last year. And it’s cause for everyone to celebrate—from your sporadic beauty consumers to the most passionate aficionados! Here’s why: when the bill takes effect January 2025, California will be the first state in the nation to ban 24 toxic ingredients commonly used in beauty and personal care products including mercury, three types of formaldehyde, some parabens and phthalates, and more. These 24 ingredients—some of which have been linked to breast cancer—are already banned from use in cosmetics in the European Union. In other words, we’re pretty late to the party.
These days, when almost everything is regulated, why is the beauty industry so far behind? Hard to say. In the U.S., there haven’t been any updates to safety regulations or protocols in the beauty industry for over 80 years. But that hasn’t stopped consumer demand. Gone are the days of blindly trusting everything that makes it to the shelves. ﹡insert collective sigh of relief﹡ As we have become more aware of what we’re putting on our body, many brands have taken it upon themselves to discontinue use of harmful chemicals, despite lack of regulations to do so.
While this is only state-wide legislation and national updates are long overdue (to say the least), we’re hoping this will cause a ripple effect. After all, will brands really create different products for different states? Likely not. So, while this may seem to only affect California consumers at first glance, it could change the course for cosmetic development nationwide—a big win!
We’re hoping this is just the beginning—the end goal is federal legislation and to have beauty and cosmetic products approved by the FDA. Could you imagine being able to look for an “FDA-approved” label as you’re browsing instead of having to look through endless ingredient lists or researching every product you’re interested in? After all, the skin is the largest organ, so if you’re still under the misconception that what you topically put on your skin doesn’t affect your health and wellbeing, think again. If you want to join the movement, contact your local government and share your concerns. Let’s celebrate this win and continue to make strides to ensure the beauty products we use are just as good for us as they are on us.