Beautycounter’s passion for safer products doesn’t stop with personal care—we want to see more ingredient transparency in everything we use at home and at work. That’s why we’re thrilled that the Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017 (SB 258) was signed into California law on October 15, requiring manufacturers to disclose cleaning product ingredients for the first time ever.
The victory was a long time coming—in general, it takes several years to pass such momentous consumer safety laws. This particular bill was introduced by California Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), whose mother, a domestic worker, would often complain of feeling “dizzy and ill” after cleaning. Several advocacy groups and cleaning product manufacturers rallied behind him to demand change, including Breast Cancer Prevention Partners and Environmental Working Group—two of our trusted non-profit partners—as well as Seventh Generation, Dr. Bronner’s, and Beautycounter. (Clearly, big things can happen when we all work together!)
As Beautycounter founder and CEO Gregg Renfrew puts it, this win will finally give consumers the chance to make informed decisions about the cleaning products they use. “Beautycounter applauds California policymakers for their leadership in the regulation and disclosure of chemicals in consumer products,” she says. “Families, consumers, and workers have the right to know what ingredients are inside the products they use every day.”
What does the Cleaning Products Right to Know Act mean for you?
Although this is a California law, its supporters hope it will create a ripple effect outside the Golden State’s borders.
One of those proponents is Nancy Buermeyer, senior policy strategist for Breast Cancer Prevention Partners. “Breast cancer prevention advocates everywhere are thrilled with this historic new law because we know it will have a positive impact far beyond California,” she says.
That impact is close on the horizon. Consumers everywhere can expect to see cleaning product ingredient lists, including fragrance components, published online before January 1, 2020. Cleaning product labels across the country will also feature full ingredient disclosure by January 1, 2021—that’s because national brands are expected to change them for all states, rather than develop separate bottles just for California. The bill may also inspire similar legislation in other states, and it could even serve as a model for federal policy change. Why? “Consumers are increasingly demanding information about the ingredients in the products they use every day, and this is especially true for cleaning products,” says Buermeyer.
According to Seventh Generation CEO Joey Bergstein, adoption of likeminded laws across the country would only be a positive thing. “Nearly 10 years ago, Seventh Generation began displaying all of our ingredients on packages, and we’ve been able to prove that this is not only good for consumers but good for business,” says the B Corp leader, whose company was at the forefront of SB 258’s triumph. “We’re proud to have collaborated on this legislation and to see California lead the nation in ingredient disclosure.”
As for Beautycounter, we’re especially proud of our independent Consultants, clients, and staff who played a crucial role in advocating for the passage of this bill. If you’re inspired to do the same on the cosmetics front, check out these 5 simple ways to help change beauty product safety regulations.