I live and breathe natural, choosing natural products for myself and my family, to clean my home as well as my animals. But the truth is natural is a word we think we understand but isn’t really set in stone – or legislation. It’s bandied about and I see it used by unscrupulous companies to lure consumers into a false sense of security.
One of the ‘big’ brands recently brought out a ‘natural dog shampoo’. No ingredients on the bottle. No ingredients on their website. They are so proud of their ‘natural dog shampoo’ that they can’t bring themselves to tell us what’s in it. We trust you – yeah right!!
I had to explain to someone from overseas recently why natural was better, why people looked out for it and why people would pay a premium for it. We had to speak via a translator and delivering a dry message was never going to work. I also wanted them to understand that WashBar was more than just natural – our products are made with goodness that is as close to the original plant as possible, safe for your pet, safe for you and good for the planet.
I decided to do it graphically by comparing our puppy shampoo with one another brand that was readily available in most pet stores.
Whilst it would be easy to choose one of the cheap nasty brands to compare, I decided to go with something that I might purchase if I didn’t know what I know. I didn’t have to go far to find the ideal candidate in prime position on the counter at our local pet store. The brand name suggested natural, the label was very appealing (and listed what seemed to be all the ingredients), the packaging was clever and credible – they were multi award winning – Perfect!
Back at the office I discovered there were 23 ingredients in the puppy shampoo. This is a big ‘red flag’ when looking at any formulation. It generally (but not always) suggests the formulator has added an ingredient to fix one problem but in doing so has created another, so they add another ingredient. Which creates another problem, and on it goes until all the problems are solved and the product is full of chemical fixes.
Of the 23 ingredients in this award-winning shampoo 11 of them are on the nasty list: banned in retail consumer products in some US States; restricted in Europe, Canada & Japan in cosmetic products; known human immune toxicants or allergens, banned in cosmetic use in Germany; must have warning on the label in California as it’s known to cause cancer in animals … and on and on the list went …
I love that line in the movie ‘Hunt for the Wilderpeople‘ – “shit just got real” – it’s exactly how I feel when I see an ingredients list like this.
To put what we are looking at into context, humans have around 10 layers of dermis –that’s the layers that make up skin – skin being the biggest organ on the body that protects and holds all our bits and pieces in. Dogs have around 3 layers of dermis. In other words – their skin is thinner and they are more likely to absorb toxins through skin contact or from their environment.
I struggle to imagine what the formulator was thinking when making this ‘multi award winning’ concoction. These ingredients are banned for use on human skin which has 3 times more skin (dermis) than a dog, and this product is intended for a puppy.
Compare this to WashBar Puppy Shampoo which has 5 ingredients – all of which are as close to the plant as we could possibly get: Saponified Olive and Coconut oils, Argan oil, Lavender Pure Essential oil and Manuka Pure Essential oil.
And this is why people are choosing genuinely natural brands they trust.