A few weeks ago on the blog, I shared tips on replacing your toiletries – what to do with your conventional products once you’ve decided to make the switch to healthier alternatives. But what if you know you want to make the switch, but don’t know how to choose better products? It’s like a jungle out there when it comes to natural and non-toxic claims on labels, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. I’ve shared before that my favourite label-reading tool is Think Dirty. What’s missing is the answer to “but does it actually work?”. Enter CertClean.
I spoke with CertClean founder Jenise Lee to get to know a little more about the program. To be honest, I was a little sceptical going in. I know the criticism EWG has faced with their certification program (being too industry-focused and not transparent enough). I’m also always a little wary of new products and services entering the ‘clean beauty’ space, because it is already filled with so much confusion. But within 5 minutes of my phone call with Jenise, I knew CertClean was different. Here’s what I learned.
What is CertClean?
CertClean is a certification program for beauty products that use only non-toxic ingredients. It takes an all-or-nothing approach – if a product contains one of the more than 1400 banned ingredients, it cannot achieve certification. CertClean’s mission is to see clean beauty products in every bathroom, and they want to make it easy to do so. Jenise lost two close family members to cancer and wanted to do something to support awareness and easier access to healthier products without carcinogens, endocrine disruptors, and other harmful ingredients.
Where Can You Find CertClean Products?
There are currently over 1000 products with the CertClean certification, most of which are smaller brands across Canada that you can find online or in health food stores. CertClean is starting to work with conventional retailers to create a section in stores devoted to certified products. While I will always be an advocate for reading labels and really understanding what you’re bringing into your home, it would be nice to have a section that’s been pre-screened.
One of the biggest challenges with switching to healthier products is the time and expense it can take to find a product that actually works. Just because it has good ingredients, it doesn’t mean it will perform. CertClean is building a review platform so you can find clean products based on real people’s reviews – Jenise says it will be like a Trip Advisor for your bathroom shelf. It’s an idea I wish I came up with, to be honest.
How You Can Help
To help get the platform built, CertClean has launched an Indiegogo campaign – in return for contributing to the campaign, supporters will receive a beauty or baby box full of good-for-you products. It’s a nice perk, especially if you’re looking for clean products to test out anyways.
I am really excited to see a CertClean section in major retailers everywhere, to help make clean beauty products a lot more accessible. In the meantime, you can check out my tipsheet on reading labels and you can join the Green Product Forum – a Facebook Group dedicated to helping you find green household and personal care products that really work.
While I am working hard at making choosing healthier products easy for you, I think what CertClean has planned will take this to the next level and I’m really excited to see what it does for the industry on the whole.