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Safe Cosmetics Australia

The Toxic-Free Campaign

Our Trademarks

Many industrial chemicals have been prioritised for public health and safety screening. There is over forty thousand chemicals currently permitted for use in Australia, approximately 10,000 of these chemicals are used in cosmetics and toiletries (including home cleaning products and more). All cosmetic ingredients are classed as "Industrial Chemicals" by NICNAS the Government authority of chemical use in Australia. Whilst restrictions apply to the use of many hazardous chemicals, NICNAS has not clinically tested every single cosmetic ingredient for public health and safety analysis, the government largely encourages industries to self regulate, provide product safety advice with directions for use. And, for consumers to protect their own health by "always doing a patch test" first when trying a new product with "discontinuing use if irritation occurs".

Whilst some cosmetic manufacturers claim to clinically test their products, this is not a mandatory requirement and the term 'clinically tested' is in itself unregulated, there is no legal guideline that defines this term. The same can be said for many marketing terms including "Natural & Organic" or "Sustainably Produced" or "100% Organic" or "made with organic ingredients" or "certified organic" consumers must ultimately be responsible for protecting their own health. Unless trademarked, marketing terms can legally be used by every brand, that is why Safe Cosmetics Australia took the initiative to register trademarks governing the terms Australian Certified Toxic-Free® Made Safe® and Allergy Certified® to provide consumers with a campaign that clearly identifies its goals and objectives. And, most importantly SCA acts as an independent organisation voicing consumer concerns that furthermore verifies marketing claims by providing manufacturing guidelines that exclude potentially harmful chemicals that are otherwise permitted without restrictions.

Why is safety such an important aspect in cosmetics today? With over tens of thousands of chemicals permitted for use, and scant regulations, protecting consumer health is a safety issue that we must all consider. Raising chemical awareness not only protects human health, it also helps to protect the environment and marine life. The physical and biological effects of chemicals should be considered before chemicals are permitted for use in products, but sadly there is no such pre-market regulatory process in most countries to properly test the health and safety of chemicals used in cosmetics, personal care and household products. Consumers really need to consider their health and safety when it comes to using cosmetics. If you have sensitive skin then there are many chemicals that you should consider avoiding, see Key Allergens to  can learn about cosmetic ingredients that are known to trigger skin irritation, sensitivities and allergies.

What does it mean to be endorsed by Safe Cosmetics Australia? The cosmetics industry is largely self-regulated. Independent organisations like Safe Cosmetics Australia voices consumer concern, furthermore empowering them with the knowledge to scrutinise product labels. SCA endorses brands that share a like-minded ingredient philosophy leaving out unnecessary chemicals. Consumers can look for SCA's trademarked campaign seals to choose products that are made without common irritants that are too often found in mainstream cosmetics and personal care products.

What is the campaign criteria? The campaign criteria is available on the website for consumers to equip themselves with the necessary knowledge to avoid nasty chemicals that are linked to adverse health effects. Safe Cosmetics Australia established the first Toxic-Free List Est.2010, and today our trusted logo’s are readily identifiable on over 1,800+ brands and thousands of products sold every year. This figure is steadily growing, now in it’s tenth year we have over 100+ brands committed to the campaign and more than 30 brands working towards a Toxic-Free approach to formulating their products, soon to launch.

Why choose certified products? Independent certifications makes it easier for consumers to find top rated, and trusted products, that match their own health and beauty philosophy. Safe Cosmetics Australia's campaign provides manufactures with guidelines to formulate products that consumers seek. Ultimately cosmetics should be made safe® with quality ingredients, and never nasty chemicals that are known to be carcinogenic or irritating potentially skin sensitising chemicals. 

Australia does not have its own pharmacopoeia. This is an official publication by a Government or medical or pharmaceutical society, that lists medicinal drugs with their directions for their use, it provides guideline usage and their effects. Australian manufacturers are advised by the TGA to rely on "any of the British Pharmacopoeia, European Pharmacopoeia, and United States Pharmacopoeia-National Formulary".  Whilst NICNAS assesses the risks of industrial chemicals, this is only after consumers have reported adverse health issues relating to chemical use in everyday products. But how many of us report skin irritation to authorities?

It is fair to say that the issue of chemical safety is a massive problem, especially when international authorities cannot agree on the toxicity of chemicals and provide guidelines in each country. In researching specific chemicals that are widely used in cosmetics, personal care and household products, science, manufacturers and government agencies are divided. This means that some chemicals are banned or restricted in various countries to various degrees, yet permitted in other countries without restriction on usage. This leaves consumers wide open to adverse health issues and SCA with a campaign mission to raise awareness and endorse brands that consider consumer health first. See Key Issues and Key Allergens for more info.

Certain products require ingredients such as plasticisers to produce a waterproof mascara. Where healthier ingredients are not available, Safe Cosmetics Australia allows less than 15% of the formula to contain the necessary ingredients to produce a competitive product that performs to customer expectations (this is also the case for certified organics whereby a percentage of non-organic ingredients are permitted). When a comparable chemical is available the brand will consider the options to replace specific ingredients.  Products approved to carry SCA's made safe® seal have satisfied the criteria to use this marketing term and pledge to consider the Ingredients FIRST.
Australian Allergy Certified® brands are required to submit clinical test reports or formulate their products within SCA's campaign objectives. Formulated free from chemicals published under Key Issues and/or usage restrictions applied. Full disclosure of restricted allergens is required to confirm the nature of the formulation or brands can submit clinical test results confirming suitability of their products for sensitive allergy prone skin.
Chemicals should be accurately tested for human safety by testing only on humans, and not testing on animals. Australia has strict laws against animal testing, but many companies are still carrying out animal testing of their products and ingredients on unwilling animals in overseas laboratories. The carnage has to end, animal cruelty is shameful and unnecessary. Safe Cosmetics Australia is proud to have zero tolerance for testing on animals, accepting only test results on consenting humans. 
Safe Cosmetics Australia is proud to support the global movement to end testing on animals. Every year toxicity tests blind, burn and poison animals to death. Countless rabbits, dogs and other animals suffer every year, but they suffer in vain. Differences in animal physiology means that chemicals should be tested on humans and nothing else. Tests carried out on animals are not accurate, and SCA does not support animal cruelty. Visit and view their list of CCF-Accredited Contract Manufacturers.
Did you know that you are potentially supporting animal testing? That's cruelty every time you buy products that are tested on animals. Australia has strict laws against animal cruelty including a no testing policy, but this doesn't stop the big name brands from testing their products overseas before importing the tainted products and selling them to unknowing consumers. Help end animal testing now sign the petition, and don't buy from brands that test their products and ingredients overseas before selling to unknowing Australians.