What could be more “natural” than a face and body liquid soap made from olive oil? Perhaps one without chemicals and preservatives?
The Code of Federal Regulations (7 C.F.R. § 205.2) defines “natural” or “nonsynthetic” as a “substance that is derived from mineral, plant, or animal matter and does not undergo a synthetic process…” According to the US Code, in 7 U.S.C. § 6502 (2.1), a “synthetic” is “a substance that is formulated or manufactured by a chemical process or by a process that chemically changes a substance extracted from naturally occurring plant, animal, or mineral sources...”
Olivella repeats the word “natural” at least three times on the label to assure us that its face and body wash is just that, yet the ingredient list includes “sodium lauroyl sarcosinate…parfum (fragrance)…BHT, [and] tetrasodium EDTA”.
In fact, a customer review of this soap on Olivella’s own website says, “This soap is great for my hands but still too harsh for face and body with contact dermatitis.”
Yet Olivella’s website repeats its “natural” claims over and over. “All soaps are filled with antioxidants and anti-aging properties found in 100% virgin olive oil. Happily our oil bar soap contains no animal fats, nor harsh man-made chemicals, neither dyes nor color additives. It is pure and natural, made for you.”
There’s another questionable side to this soap in that they make what may be drug claims. Olivella’s website claims that the “Top 3 Olive Oil Benefits” include helping alleviate acne, reducing stretch marks, and providing anti-aging properties. In particular, it states that olive oil reduces stretch marks because its ingredients “improve collagen production and skin elasticity.” This implies that the soap has these benefits. Elsewhere on the website, it’s more directly stated: “Olive Oil Soaps are ideal for every skin type because they…slow down the aging process.”
The FDA’s website says that cosmetics (such as moisturizing soap) that claim to treat acne or slow the aging process are making drug claims and should go through a drug approval process.
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