Have you ever found yourself wondering whether your favourite foundation really is as natural as it claims to be? Perhaps you have glanced at the ingredients list, but unless you are an expert in product formulation, chances are you might not know which ingredients you should be looking for, and which to avoid. In the beauty industry, greenwashing is rife – that is, the marketing of skin care, makeup and a wide range of other health and beauty products as ‘green’, ‘natural’ or ‘eco-friendly’ when, in fact, these products might be anything but. Thankfully, in Australia and around the world, there are now many green beauty certifications awarded to products and brands, designed to help provide some clarity for consumers and clear up any confusion surrounding whether a product truly is as natural, organic, sustainable or ethical as we think it might be.
What are green beauty certifications?
Green beauty certifications may be awarded to certain products or entire brands, often by independent organisations who have developed certain testing standards over many years. Certifications can tell us about certain attributes of a product – perhaps providing a numerical measure of its organic content, communicating the absence of certain banned ingredients, such as artificial preservatives, or proving that it has met high standards for sustainability in the entire production process. In some cases, certifications are only awarded to products which have undergone strict checks and rigorous tests. In short, certifications are a great way to recognise that a product or brand has been deemed reliable to a certain level or degree by a third party. Most of all, it can be reassuring to know that your favourite cosmetic products are worthy of your trust – it gives peace of mind to know that we are choosing wisely for both ourselves and the planet.
To help guide you on your green beauty journey, we have rounded up a few of the most recognised green beauty certifications found in Australia and around the world – if you are new to clean beauty, these are a great starting point when searching for trusted brands and products.
Natural certifications for cosmetic products
Australian Certified Organic
Australian Certified Organic, also known as ACO, is Australia’s most prominent organic certifier of not only green beauty products but fresh produce, too. In order for a beauty product to earn Australian Certified Organic status and use the recognised ‘bud’ logo, it must contain 95-100% certified organic ingredients. Alternatively, a lower percentage of certified organic content may be specified on the label, or certain ingredients singled out as certified organic.
Loved by The Green Edit: Vanessa Megan, Ipsum Skin
The NATRUE standard, a non-profit association based in Brussels, focuses on certifying products with ingredients which are natural, ‘naturally derived’ or ‘nature identical’, providing natural or organic certification with the guarantee of no animal testing or artificial ingredients. Products must meet strict criteria in order to be certified as ‘natural’, or meet certain percentages if they are to be deemed ‘organic’.
Loved by The Green Edit: Weleda
ECOCERT, founded in France in 1991, is an independent organic certifier which awards a range of natural and organic certifications, based on strict international standards. Originally created to certify agricultural products, it is known for its special attention to sustainability and environmental impact; the entire supply chain of a product is audited from start to finish.
COSMOS is an international provider of either COSMOS Natural or Organic certification, with a strong focus on sustainability. The standard was originally developed in Europe, and products with either a COSMOS Organic or COSMOS Natural certification display the percentage of organic or natural ingredients on the label.
Soil Association is the United Kingdom’s most prominent independent organic certifier, whose certification process begins at the sourcing of ingredients and follows right through to formulation, and even packaging. The Soil Association focuses on sustainable ingredients and does not allow animal testing; international COSMOS standards are used for their certification process.
Loved by the Green Edit
The official ‘Loved by The Green Edit’ stamp of approval celebrates green, clean, ethical, sustainable and cruelty free beauty brands. All brands featured in our online store and at our events are vetted to ensure their brand and products align with The Green Edit values.