Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

The Best There is in Body Care

Are you looking for safer alternatives in personal care? Discover why Whole Foods Market Premium Body Care is the best solution available on the market today. Learn about our new top-tier standards for results, quality of source, environmental impact and safety. Watch this enlightening video to get the scoop on how we determine which personal care products earn the Premium seal.

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96 comments

Comments

James says …

Since you are creating these standards I have a few questions. Why do you sell chemical hiar color with a known carcinogen like PPD.? Who checks the labels to make sure they conform to the FDA regulations ? Many of the products on your shelves do not. Even the Organic Ones! Are you concerned about the plastic bottles and caps that are being used from China? You support the family farms why not support the small family body care companies? What are proprietary preservatives? Thanks.

mod*mom says …

another great reason i LOVE whole foods market!

cuzamora says …

Use of the word "natural" has become so broad that almost any product can justify it's use. I live in an area where health food stores/stores selling truly natural/organic products are rare so I've turned to purchasing from home based organic businesses. As always, Whole Foods is taking a stand and doing the footwork so their customers can know that the products they purchase there are the purest possible and isn't as chemically laden as products in mainstream stores. These webcasts are a great tool to teach consumers about the products used on their bodies.

Michelle says …

I loved watching this video. I have often wondered how truly safe "natural" items are, for exactly the reason stated here...that there are no real standards. I appreciate Whole Foods actually setting their own high standards (especially for efficacy...I hate when I spend a lot of money on something natural and it doesn't work at all). While no system is likely perfect, at least thetr is some degree of confidence that a lot of the leg work has been done concerning safety, etc.

rani shah says …

I wish we had a whole food near us!!!! I think it's great that you are offering this video as a service to answer the "natural" question. Please come to San Luis Obispo, Ca!!!!!

Naomi says …

I wish there was a Whole Foods here. How nice to see a chain actually care about what's in the products they stock!

Mama Zen says …

I love the consideration that is being given to environmental impact!

Kristi says …

great video!! I would love to try some of these products :)

Stephanie V says …

Kudos to whole foods for starting to set standards where none currently exist. I love there is also a person stationed in the beauty section ready to help make informed decision.

daisy says …

I'm always concerned about the amount of chemicals in everyday products... it's nice to know that some stores do too!

Jenn says …

great video. i loved how the word "natural" was explained and that there are so many products out there that say they are natural when they really aren't. thanks for the info.

Kimberly says …

Nice to know there is some sort of a standard out there. Hopefully one day the cost of these natural, safe products will be more competitive, too.

Tiffany says …

Im glad someone is working in our favor to give us products that do not contain the same old stuff that does nothing for us but age our skin, body and mind. Im real sick of natural meaning natural falvor added. Please keep up the good work and pick me for your drawing. I love the products you offer and I shop at the Whole Foods in Tustin, CA.

Tuesday says …

That is why I shop at Whole Foods they care about the chemicals in products we use every day as much as I do! I don't have to worry shopping there.

Cassie says …

I have seen "natural" on everything from soap to rugs. I always wondered about the true definition.

Suzy says …

Thanks for working hard on a good skin care line. It's always hard to pick out good body care because you don't know what is in the product. Thanks for looking out for the environment, too!

Cindi Hoppes says …

Hi, Thanks for the enlightening podcast! I can't believe that the FDA has no regulation or definition for "natural!" Scary. Even worse, is that they don't regulate the safety of "natural" products. I think we can be effected on much by what goes on our body as what goes in it! Thanks for the informative lesson. Cindi

Elke Von Freudenberg says …

As a makeup artist and former educator for Aveda, I wholeheartedly agree to this labeling. I wish all companies would set such a standard to their own products, rather than putting a small % in and labeling it a natural when it's anything but. Kudos for a fantastic idea and holding other products accountable to what they put on their own label. Here's hoping this idea spreads..... thank you for informing us and letting us know.

Joanna says …

So much useful information! I will definitely be using this as a resource from now on. I hope this particular podcast will steer people towards healthy products for the outside of their bodies as well as the insides!

RachelV says …

I've never been to a Whole Foods Market, but have heard how wonderful they are. I see that your staff are educated and helpful. I love that Whole Foods has done the work for us.

RachelV says …

I’ve never been to a Whole Foods Market, but have heard how wonderful they are. I see that your staff are educated and helpful. I love that Whole Foods has done the work for us. I also love that you have set high standards for your products!

Claudia says …

It's about time someone started doing this! I'll have to pay closer attention to the Body Care department the next time I'm at Whole Foods.

Shelly says …

Thanks for all the great information. It makes the choices in the store less intimidating! It is hard to work out what "natural" really means so it is good to know from a source I trust.

Holly says …

Being a stay at home mom, with a million responsibilities and a million things on my mind, it is wonderful that Whole Foods has made shopping for body products a little easier. One less thing to research on my part means one more time, and more time is a beautiful thing when you're a mom!

Naomi says …

I always wonder what the parameters are when lines claim to be natural. It's nice to have a barometer.

Kim Bui says …

I've often felt betrayed the the indifference the FDA seems to have regarding body care and skin care. Not everyone has the know-how to read labels to look for bad ingredients. Glad you're taking a stand

Lisa G. says …

I felt like I really learned something new by watching this podcast. I didn't realize that so many products that are labeled as natural really aren't! I am new to buying organic and natural products so I'm glad I now know to check the label of the products I purchasing carefully before I buy.

Joan says …

Thanks for that very informative video. I love Whole Foods and feel that you keep high standards.

REGINA SANDERS says …

Very useful and informative video. Thank you.

Lydia says …

Thanks for this video! Interesting

Anne Bakke says …

I wish the government cared as much about the environment as Whole Foods seams to! The video was very informative, and you are providing a great service to your customers. I wish there was a Whole Foods Store close to me. (Camano Island, WA)

DANIELLE says …

I love the idea of 'natural' but I've heard that 90% of "organic or natural" products at regular grocery stores aren't really natural. since nobody checks this out, people are spending much more for just the word 'natural' printed on the package! I always check labels for natural ingredients, but I am concerned about the packaging. I would love to see more products have biodegradable packages, or packages made from recycled items, or keeping in mind that packaging is made with chemicals and is non-natural. If you go natural, push it all the way! I would feel much better about that, and wouldn't mind spending a few cents more to know that we are also helping the environment. I would love to see skincare product lines have a program where you could send your bottles back and they would reuse or recycle them, and offer a discount on their next purchase. It would keep people coming back, that's for sure! Think about it like the Netflix of skincare! I think we are halfway there, and I absolutely love your natural products! I feel much better physically and it feels good on my skin. I shop there religiously, and one shop is 2 blks from my house. I'm lucky! ;)

Lola Carter says …

Wonderful. Too many companies take advantage of the term "Natural" to pass of an inferior product or even a harmful product. This is a great step forward.

Sara B. says …

I don't know the definition of natural! Since the FDA doesn't have time and probably funding to test natural products, it's nice that Whole Foods does that. I love that James asked some questions in the posts...gave me more info ;0) This will drive me to buy products at Whole Foods now that are Premium.

says …

Thank you for your comments and questions about our new standards. In response to James’ first question, PPD (P-phenylenediamine) is one of the chemicals that allow the dye to adhere to the hair shaft. In order for a hair dye to be permanent, chemicals are required to make the dye adhere to and penetrate the hair shaft. PPD is unacceptable according to our Premium standard. We allow the ingredient in our regular standards at levels of less than 1% only. Conventional hair dyes may contain the ingredient at levels of up to 5%. Regarding the safety of PPD, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR), an independent group of scientists who review, evaluate and report on various cosmetic ingredients, conducted a Final Safety Report on PPD in which they concluded that "it is safe at current concentrations of use," which is described in the report as being up to 5%. In addition, the difference between our hair dye products and conventional hair dye products is that products like Naturcolor, sold at WFM, additionally contain nourishing botanicals and provide a safer option for customers who would like to color their hair permanently. For those who are concerned about PPD and other chemicals in hair dyes, we also offer henna products, which are acceptable to Premium, for natural hair color. For more information on hair dyes in general, see: http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/cos-818.html , http://www.findarticles.com/cf_0/m0820/n253/21034492/p1/article.html.

says …

Regarding James’ questions about labeling, plastics, preservatives and small body care companies: All product labels that are acceptable to Premium have been reviewed by the quality standards team. This is an important part of the Premium approval process and we have dedicated much time to carefully evaluating labels. All Premium labels must comply with current FDA labeling guidelines or must have label changes in process. Plastics are indeed a hot topic. We are committed to helping our customers protect themselves and their families and as such are concerned about the growing body of research which connects BPA and other estrogenic compounds, including phthalates, to certain health effects. Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has said that such materials are appropriate and safe, we are currently evaluating certain products and packaging materials on a variety of criteria, including endocrine activity, toxicity, recyclability and functionality. Our goal is to help our customers avoid endocrine active materials in products and packaging where functional alternatives exist. We are staying on top of the latest academic research regarding the endocrine activity of substances present in plastics, including BPA. When appropriate, we have stopped the sale of certain products and/or provided information to our customers about the products. For example, as of January 2006 we stopped selling baby bottles and child drinking cups made from polycarbonate plastic or other plastics with added phthalates because of the emerging scientific evidence on their risk. We have begun the process of examining the plastic packaging materials we use to package foods in our stores, and are working with a leading testing firm to design a laboratory test to accurately assess the endocrine activity of these materials. We will continue to search for the safest and most functional packaging materials for our stores. Concerning small body care companies, please take a quick look at our local vendor program: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/products/locallygrown/index.html . There are several small body care vendors featured as part of our local vendor program. And last but certainly not least, here is a link to all of the unacceptable ingredients, including preservatives, to Premium Body Care Standards: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/wholebody/pbc/unacceptable_ingred.pdf

C Duran says …

Thank for the informative video and information on the term "natural". It just goes to show that product packaging can be very misleading and it is hard to always know what you are actually buying.

Samantha says …

All Natural by definition might mean choosing nature consciously rather than manmade unconsciously.

wendy klassen says …

Interesting. Thanks for this!

Esther says …

In my own small way, I am trying to make as many conscientious choices as possible, so the Premium Seal standard gives me a measure of confidence that I am doing just that.

Rebecca says …

I thought this video was very well done and informative! It was appealing and it was great to see that Whole foods is doing so much to help the environment. However, I thought it would be helpful if the video talked about what standards Whole foods uses when considering something "natural". The video does talk about what various consumers may think is natural, but it's important to hear the stance of the store from which they are buying these "natural" products. I really liked the way that Whole Foods is looking at the three major points: natural-ness, saftey, and efficacy because those are the qualities that people most look for when they're buying a product. Overall, very well put together and informative! I love whole foods!

madeline says …

Another reason to shop at whole foods.

Sarah says …

For some reason, I'd never really thought about the fact I wash off all my beauty products - that every single thing goes down the drain and into the environment. Great idea.

Sofi says …

thanks so much for all the great information. I always trust Whole Foods products to have a higher standard than regular grocery/drug/ beauty supply, and now I am so intrigued by your Premium standard. Your consideration of 'past, present, and future' sets you apart-way ahead of- all competitors!

Kelly says …

Great video. I think it would be helpful if you added the information of how much your skin absorbs lotions.

Becca says …

Great video! There were a lot of shadows, though, which made it hard to watch for long without having to turn away. Perhaps add a little additional lighting next time? Just for camera's sake? Thanks!

Roxy says …

Great video. I would probably include fewer customer views at the beginning though. My attention span isn't that long.

beth chanin says …

Thank you Whole Foods! The fact that you are helping us to distinguish the very murky area of terminology is fabulous. It is extremely important that people in every stage of life have the awareness of how important it is to be able to make a contribution for themselves, and to the planet for their future. I appreciate the new category, the bar being raised is inspiring. The video was informative and gives me a sense of hope!!

Marissa says …

I'm glad to see someone is taking the initiative to make sure a "natural" product is truly natural. Whole Foods is doing a great job of making consumers more away of their individual impact on the Earth and their own body. Thank you Whole Foods! Marissa :)

uloma says …

First, I'd like to say how relieved I am to find out tha tmy girlfriends and I are not the only ones who ponder this issue. Many products which are supposed to be "natural" contain so much artificial substances. Thank you Whole Foods Store for prooving our thoughts to be logical.

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