Be the Change
Updated: Mar 27, 2019
This weeks #WomenWhoInspireWednesday
Beautycounter Founder and champion for change Greg Renfrew
Last week I went with 3 other Beautycounter consultants to a meeting with Congressman Brad Sherman’s office. We met with his Policy Aide and were all able to tell our “Why” story. Why we decided to join the Beautycounter movement to get safer products into the hands of everyone. The next day Senator Dianne Feinstein and Susan Collins would introduce the “Personal Care Products Safety Act”a bill that is the first step forward to regulate the ingredients in personal care and make up products in 80 years. This bill would enforce the transparency on ingredient lists across the entire cosmetic industry, giving the FDA the power to pull products with ingredients that are known to cause human health issues. It would also be able to enforce clarity across a largely unregulated industry.
Gregg Renfrew was inspired to start Beautycounter after seeing the documentary “An Inconvenient Truth” that talked about global warming and the toxins in the air and realized there is no current regulation for the toxins in beauty products beyond what was set in 1936. Beautycounter was founded in 2011 and has emerged onto the “Clean Beauty” scene with a mission, a “Never List” of 1500 ingredients consumers should never use and dedication to advocacy that as Maria Shriver put it has made beautycounter and it’s consultants “Architects of change” It has been quite a journey and I am proud to be a part of it. My own journey with Beautycounter came after I was diagnosed with breast cancer and realized that although I had none of the known risk factors for breast cancer I had been putting make up on my skin and worse, lip gloss and lip stick on my mouth for more than 15 years that had known carcinogens in them. I have 3 young girls and I can’t sit by and let them use products with known cancer causing ingredients and known hormone disruptors when there is a safe alternative out there. Gregg Renfrew had the same fire in her heart to do something about it and now here we are at the cusp of change.
The Beautycounter CEO recently sat on a panel along side a group of like minded women at The Goop Summit with Gwyneth Paltrow. Gregg talked about how she and Beautycounter have been working on the issue of ingredient and labeling clarity by urging Congress to pass new legislation that would require more disclosure by the cosmetic companies and would give the FDA more power to regulate. Companies like The Environmental Working Group have also been a leading resource for people looking for safer alternatives in their products.
Renfrew said the next challenge will be to make the safer, high performing products more accessible to the person who may not be able to pay the raised cost of the safer ingredients and that laws requiring cosmetics companies to disclose ingredients would eventually lead to lower prices. Changes in the laws will get the larger companies to disclose ingredients and will eventually lead to a change in the supply chain and lower prices.
Beautycounter just had it’s 6 year anniversary and can proudly say a change is coming. The bill introduced last week is the change that we need. We wouldn’t put something on our mouth that we knew caused cancer, I didn't know the lip stick I was using had known cancer causing ingredients but I do now and into the trash it all went. Now companies that use hazardous ingredients will have to disclose that and the clean beauty will rise.