Here are the criteria we use with respect to our labels:
1. Full ingredient disclosure…no exceptions.
You will find a complete list of ingredients on every product’s label. We even list those ingredients that are less than 1% of the formula. Most companies will only list words like “preservatives”, “fragrances” or “dyes”, these are blanket terms and without specifying the ingredients name, you as the consumer, do not know what ingredients other companies are using. In addition to listing all of the ingredients we use, we also use their proper INCI (International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients) name. The INCI names are based on the scientific names of the ingredients and therefore provide a consistent set of names for the ingredients that consumers can research. While using INCI names is required in the cosmetics industry, it is not required for cleaning products, laundry or dish products.
Material Safety Data sheets and a full list of product ingredients are also available on our web site; just visit that particular product’s page.
2. Understanding our logos
Nature Clean® uses various logos as a way to explain and highlight specific pieces of information. The use of logos is to ensure that this information is communicated consistently across all of our products.
The following table provides a quick glance at the logos and what they’re for.
Read on to understand more about these logos.
Click here to download the table
Leaping Bunny® Logo:
This logo is owned by The Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics and highlights that Nature Clean® products are not tested on animals and do not contain any animal ingredients. The
Leaping Bunny Program administers a cruelty-free standard and the internationally recognized Leaping Bunny Logo for companies producing cosmetic, personal care and household products. The Leaping Bunny Program provides the best assurance that no new animal testing is used in any phase of product development by the company, its laboratories or suppliers. (leapingbunny. org)
In addition to not being tested on animals, we also avoid the use of any animal by products therefore Nature Clean® products are Vegan products.
Biodegradable- OECD Test #301D:
Nature Clean® uses the most stringent classification of biodegradability in its testing of raw materials. The Readily Biodegradability under OECD 301 (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) uses microorganisms that are obtained from waste water treatment plants. These organisms are placed into a glass jar with the product that’s being tested (i.e. Nature Clean product) for 28 days. The test measures the carbon dioxide that is released into the jar, the more carbon dioxide generated, the greater biodegradation of the product. A degradation of more than 70% is required over a period of 10 days and it would be expected that the formula would breakdown to carbon dioxide, water and minerals.
This type of test is considered a stress test because the concentration of the tested materials is very high and the number of bacteria very small. This is create a more stressed situation to ensure that if the product passes this 29 day test for biodegradation it would be expected to biodegrade in a natural environment.
Made by Really Nice Canadians® Logo:
This logo was created by Nature Clean® as a way to celebrate our Canadian heritage. We take pride in the fact that Nature Clean® is a family operated and owned business. We also take pride in the fact that all of our products but one are manufactured and packaged in Canada. The one product that is manufactured and packaged in the US is our Bar Soap. At this time we cannot find a Canadian supplier that can meet our high standards, including the removal of EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid).
EDTA is a preservative that is used in many products; while the ingredient is not harmful to humans it does not biodegrade. Instead it remains at the bottom of our lakes and rivers and actually unearths heavy metals found at the bottom of the lakes and rivers and releases them into our waterways; the increase metal content is unhealthy for both humans and aquatic life.
The Ecologo is a North American respected environmental standard and certification mark. To read more about the Ecologo and Nature Clean®’s involvement please see criteria #5. Third Party Certification.
The HE logo is used on our Laundry products to identify that the product is compatible with High Efficiency washing machines. Products carrying the HE logo are safe for use in front or top loading, standard or high efficiency washing machines. Nature Clean® products can be used in High Efficiency washing machines because our products are lower foaming due to the fact that we avoid the use of synthetic sudsing agents (surfactants).
Great for Cold, Warm, Hot Water:
This logo is used on our Laundry products to identify that the product will perform well in various temperatures of water including cold, warm and hot water.
Safe for Infant Clothing:
This logo was created by Nature Clean® and is found on our laundry products. It is to specify that the formulations in these products are safe for use on the clothing of babies, infants the toddlers. Because of the natural formulations we use and the avoidance of any chemicals that might cause irritation, our formulations can be considered hypoallergenic and safe for even those with the most delicate skin. (exception: Fabric Softeners should not be used on infant clothing as they can remove the fire retardant coating).
Love you Family, Love your Health, Love your Planet®:
This logo has been created by Nature Clean® and can be found on various products or marketing material including the website, brochures, hang tags, etc. This combination of elements is one of our guiding principles when creating Nature Clean® products. We focus on ensuring that when you buy our products, you’re buying the safest possible alternative for your family, your health and our planet.
3. Our Hypoallergenic claim
Nature Clean® strives to use the safest ingredients available. As part of that effort we also ensure that the ingredients we use are extremely mild and gentle. Our products are formulated without the use of ingredients that are typically known to cause skin irritations or induce allergic reactions. Based on this guiding principle, our products are labelled as Hypoallergenic. While we do take great strides to ensure our products are the mildest and most gentle formulations available, everyone’s skin reacts differently to different ingredients. It is important to understand that Hypoallergenic does not mean that an individual can’t possibly have a negative reaction to a product; it just means that they are less likely to. In an effort to help people identify ingredients that might cause individual allergic reactions, Nature Clean® fully discloses 100% of our ingredients.
Additionally you’ll notice that we do not claim our scented products to be Hypoallergenic. While the same formulations are used for these products and they are as mild and gentle as the unscented versions, the addition of essential oils does mean there is a slight chance that certain individuals can react to them. We therefore choose to omit the claim on our scented products.
4. Our screening process for avoiding any hazardous ingredients.
To ensure that our products are free from any hazardous ingredients we check our ingredients against the following agencies to check their toxicity as well as to ensure none of our ingredients are listed as possible carcinogens (cancer causing agents):
IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer): IARC is part of the World Health Organization and their mission is to coordinate and conduct research on the causes of human cancer, the mechanisms of carcinogenesis, and to develop scientific strategies for cancer control.
NTP (National Toxicology Program): The NTP is an interagency program whose mission is to evaluate agents of public health concern by developing and applying tools of modern toxicology and molecular biology. The intent of the NTP vision is to expand the scientific basis for making public health decisions on the potential toxicity of environmental agents (http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/)
ACGIH (The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists): ACGIH is a member-based organization that advances occupational and environmental health. Their Board of Directors and Committees consist of members who strive to provide essential, cutting edge information to government, academia, and corporate facilities throughout America, Canada and countries abroad (http://www.acgih.org/home.htm).
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act): The OSHA was enacted, December 29, 1970 to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women; by authorizing enforcement of the standards developed under the Act; by assisting and encouraging the States in their efforts to assure safe and healthful working conditions; by providing for research, information, education, and training in the field of occupational safety and health; and for other purposes (http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=OSHACT&p_id=3355).
TOXNET (Toxicology Data Network): This is a database on toxicology, hazardous chemicals, environmental health, and toxic releases. TOXNET is a collection of toxicology and environmental health databases. TOXNET includes the Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB), a database of potentially hazardous chemicals, TOXLINE (containing references to the world’s toxicology literature), and ChemIDplus (a chemical dictionary and structure database) (http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/).
OECD SIDS (OECD Screening Information Data Sets): These documents facilitate the access to information needed for health and environmental risk assessment of chemicals. (http://www.chem.unep.ch/irptc/sids/oecdsids/sidspub.html).
HERA Project (Human and Environmental Risk Assessment): This is a voluntary industry programme to carry out Human and Environmental Risk Assessments on ingredients of household cleaning products. HERA will provide a common risk assessment framework for the household cleaning products industry, and show that this process will deliver evaluated safety information on the ingredients used in these products in an effective and transparent way. This process is intended to support a risk-based approach to chemical legislation in the European Union, and may serve as a pilot for the application of the same process in other sectors and/or geographical areas. (http://www.heraproject.com/)
You...our customers and your emails: Yes, believe it or not we actually do listen closely to the suggestions of our customers. There are many of you and a much smaller number of us, so we depend on the positive, and negative, feedback from consumers to help form opinions on the wide variety of ingredients available.
We do not defend ingredients...If a chemical comes under severe criticism and our research findings warrant a change, we reformulate our products and move away from that ingredient.
5. Ingredients we avoid.
Here is a list of ingredients that we will NOT use in our products.
Alkyl Phenol Ethoxylates (APEs)
Ammonium Quaternary Compounds
Dyes and artificial colouring
Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA)
Enzymes (in powder form that could be inhaled)
Nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA)
Parabens (methyl and propyl)
Polyethylene glycol (PEG)
Siloxanes (D4, D5, D6)
Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLES)
Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulphate/Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)
6. Third Party Certification.
Nature Clean® has been working with Ecologo since the early 1990’s. Ecologo is a well respected North American respected environmental standard and certification mark. It is awarded by TerraChoice, an unbiased 3rd party hired by the Government of Canada to test products with regards to their environmental impact. The Ecologo Program is a Type 1 eco-label, as defined by ISO (International Organization for Standardization) which means that the Program compares products/services with others in the same category, develops rigorous and scientifically relevant criteria that reflect the entire lifecycle of the product, and awards the Ecologo to those that are verified by an independent 3rd party as complying with the criteria. (www.ecologo.org)
We currently have over 80 products certified through Ecologo, the most of any consumer products company. This provides you with the assurance, from a neutral 3rd party that our products perform and are safe for the environment.
7. Precautionary Principle
When it comes to our ingredients we follow something called the Precautionary Principle: “where an activity (or ingredient) raises threats of harm to the environment or human health, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically”. By using the Precautionary Principle as our guiding principle we avoid the use of ingredients that could be potentially harmful, despite the fact that it hasn’t been completely scientifically provide...translation: better safe than sorry!
8. Our overall philosophy is so very simple
We want people to know that if they buy a Nature Clean® product, they’ve chosen the safest possible product for the health of their family, themselves, their pets and our planet.