Green Consumers Score Big Victory: CVS Health Commits to Safer Beauty Products


Green consumers have scored a major victory! CVS Health, the store where you probably buy many cosmetics and personal care products, has promised to make those products safer by removing chemicals in their products that have been linked to cancer, birth defects, and hormone disruption.

Those chemicals include parabens, phthalates and formaldehyde.

Nearly 600 beauty and personal care products will become safer to use, including the CVS Health store brand, Beauty 360, Essence of Beauty, and Blade product lines. The Promise Organic line of store brand products already does not contain any of these toxic chemicals.

Why Did CVS Health Commit to Safer, Healthier Products?

The company wanted to “provide customers with the safe, efficacious products that they are looking for,” said Cia Tucci, Vice President of Store Brands and Quality Assurance at CVS Health.

“We listened when customers voiced their desire for products that provide the benefits they need with fewer ingredients of concern.”  

CVS Health

“Customer feedback has driven this move to eliminate parabens, phthalates and the most prevalent formaldehyde donors.”


Does It Matter? Yes!!

CVS Caremark Corporation is one of the largest drugstore chains in the U.S. It has over 7,300 stores and 2011 U.S. retail sales of almost $60 million, the 7th highest nationally.

CVS HealthThe non-profit organization Safer Chemicals, Health Families’ “Mind the Store” campaign, which Big Green Purse and many other consumer groups endorsed, put pressure on CVS Health to clean up its act.

Safer Chemicals has applauded CVS for its decision to clean up its products but says there is still more work to be done.

CVS Health can use its leverage to work with their suppliers to reduce, eliminate or safely substitute over a hundred questionable chemicals.

Consumers should also continue to carefully read labels and buy products that are free of chemicals that have been linked to health problems.

Get Help Here: The Best 11 Non-Toxic Ways to Get Healthy Skin

CVS Health


CVS Health won’t have its safer products fully available until the end of 2019. Until then, avoid products that contain the following:

√ Parabens

√ Phthalates

√ Formaldehyde

√ Triclosan

Parabens – Parabens are commonly found in cosmetics, sunscreen, shampoo, conditioner, hair styling gel and lotion and deodorant. Studies show parabens mimic estrogen and inhibit testosterone, potentially disrupting hormonal balance in both women and men.

Phthalates – These compounds are often found in fragrances and aerosols like air fresheners, as well as in plastics, solvents and even children’s toys. Of the variety of health impacts linked to exposure to phthalates, damage to male reproductive organs is among the gravest concerns.

Formaldehyde – Formaldehyde is a “volatile organic chemical,” which means that it will “off-gas” or emit its components into the air you breathe over time. It’s found in antiseptics, cosmetics, nail polish, dishwashing liquids, fabric softeners, shoe polish, carpet cleaners, glue, adhesive, paint, and more. It’s also used as a preservative in foods, like some cheeses, dried food, and fish.

Triclosan – Triclosan is actually a pesticide that may be included in toothpaste; it’s also the ingredient formulated into many antibacterial products, like hand wash, body wash and many cleaning compounds.

Increasing members of the medical community oppose using triclosan because they worry that it is actually encouraging the growth of drug-resistant bacteria.

By the way, washing your hands with hot soapy water seems to be just as effective as anti-bacterial soaps for getting rid of germs.

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2 Responses to Green Consumers Score Big Victory: CVS Health Commits to Safer Beauty Products

  1. Mike Schade May 8, 2017 at 12:44 pm #

    Thanks for sharing the good news Diane!

    It’s great to see CVS Health using their market power to drive harmful chemicals out of products, and meet the rising consumer demand for safer products free of toxic chemicals. Yay!

    • Diane May 11, 2017 at 10:49 am #

      Thanks for all YOUR good work! Let’s partner up in the future. Big Green Purse wants to do more to promote the kind of marketplace shifts Mind the Store is making possible.

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