hopeful post concerning Burt’s Bees and Clorox

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A hopeful article concerning Burt’s Bees and the buyout by Clorox

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/burts-bees-clorox-sustainable-change

Ayurveda’s roots and modern day cosmetics

   It seems in today’s beauty industry there is a lot of buzz concerning natural ingredients and holistic approaches to cosmetics. The company Aveda has used Ayurvedic ingredients and seemingly adopted much of the belief system as well as a portion of the 5,000 year old medical practice of India’s name itself, only to now be bought by Estee Lauder, a non-holistic, non-ayurvedic company. In this buy out, the company’s animal testing practice policies have come under scrutiny, which it is even more so becoming an undefined gray area with the much rehearsed retort in the companies defense “Aveda only tests on animals when legally required to do so.” 

   It is apparent that China requires animal testing on products because in a place with air quality in weekly ratings of 500, and a required particulate respirator mask to be worn in some areas, this country cares about the health of its citizens. So requiring the testing of products that have previously been tested and making testing on people who will wear the products, out of the question, China insures the health of its populace, whom in southern Beijing walk outside and breath air which has the toxic equivalent of smoking two packs of cigarettes.

   The ingredients of Aveda products were by no means 100% ayurvedic previously, but the formulas made use of aloe in an eye wrinkle cream, turmeric in a hair loss formula and amla in other products. This was a nice way to incorporate some Ayurveda into modern living and to see the beauty industry aspect of its future unfold, as more people became aware of it through this company.

   But for now the questions still remain: How much animal testing, if any is occurring at Aveda? Could Aveda’s previous policy affect the overall policy of Estee Lauder, which does test on animals, or will it most likely be swallowed up and turned into your average mainstream cosmetic company with no real policy on environmental issues, greener packaging or animal welfare to speak of? And how will the products change? Will the previous hints of naturalness and light dustings of high quality “ayurvedic” ingredients all but disappear to be replaced by eau de lauryl sulfate? Time will tell. 

From Aveda’s page:

Ayurveda is an ancient holistic system of healing that strives to create balance in body, mind and spirit. Ayurveda means “the science of life” and it has been central to Aveda since the very beginning, when we first partnered with the Ayurvedic Doctors Vinod and Kusum Upadhyay*. They have helped us to tap 5,000 years of Ayurvedic wisdom in creating our products, including some with powerful, high-performing Ayurvedic herbal extracts.

In keeping with Ayurvedic principles—and because of our concern for the Earth—Aveda is committed to using organic ingredients. This has led to another Ayurvedic partnership, between Aveda and the Indian firm, Nisarga.

Nisarga—which means “nature” in Sanskrit—grows Ayurvedic herbs using organic and biodynamic agriculture. The firm owns farmland and also partners with locally owned organic farms to produce the Ayurvedic herbs ordered by Nisarga’s customers. We’ve partnered with Nisarga to source organic turmeric and amla for use in some of our products.
Turmeric grows at Nisarga’s organic Umbari farm, which creates jobs for nearby villagers planting the fields, harvesting the rhizomes, then steaming, drying and polishing them for shipment.

Amla is grown at the independent Devarashtre farm, one of many that works with Nisarga—which helped to certify the land as organic, paying the costs that make certification a barrier for many small farms. Villagers harvest the amla by hand, removing the seeds and drying the fruit before shipment for processing.

At the processing plant, Nisarga employs an environmentally friendly extraction method using carbon dioxide, which leaves no toxic residues and works at a lower temperature—yielding highly potent extracts.
Because of the company’s concern about the dangers of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, Nisarga works to encourage farmers to convert to organic agriculture. They have held regular seminars for about 35,000 farmers over the years, convincing many to go organic. Nisarga pays the organic certification costs for their farmer partners and also provides ongoing educational support to help make conversion successful.
Our support of Nisarga is helping them to expand organic farming, which is better for the Earth, the farmers—all of us.

*They practice Ayurvedic medicine and conduct Ayurvedic research at Maharshi Bhardwaj Clinic and Research Centre in Haridwar, India.

CLEAN WATER FOR INDIAN VILLAGES

Aveda has long been committed to protecting clean water and ensuring safe access to it.

We learned that two villages near the organic farm that supplies organic turmeric to Aveda experienced water shortages and contamination during the summer seasons. This led us to partner with Global Greengrants Fund to help the communities address their water problems.
In the village of Chogre Umbari, the old water system leaked, so some sections were repaired and others rebuilt. In Jadha Umbari, contamination problems and algae made the water unsafe for drinking, so a new spring was tapped. Aveda provided the funds needed to buy materials for the improved infrastructure and for skilled labor to implement the project.

In the dry season, the women of the villages used to spend three hours every morning and three hours every evening carrying water from a kilometer away.

They now have six more hours in the day—to help their children with schoolwork and to plant gardens to raise vegetables for their families.

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Concerning Animal Testing

I just found out the unfortunate news from Nika from Pirouette Makeup on her latest video. I did a google search and found out it was true. Read here and here. Basically M.A.C along with other Estee Lauder brands, have changed their statement on animal testing to say that they do not test on animals or ask others to do so except when required by law. This basically means that they test on animals when they sell in markets, such as China, who enforce animal testing on all cosmetics.

So I went to a bunch of sites from brands owned by Estée Lauder (Aveda, Bobbi Brown, Bumble & Bumble, Clinique, La Mer, M.A.C, Ojon, Origins) and looked on their website for their stand on animal testing. Here is what I found. You’ll notice that some of them have the same statement other than the brand name. I will no longer purchase from any of these brands until they commit to being cruelty-free again, and I encourage everyone to do the same. As with my Mary Kay products, I will finish using them up but will not repurchase anything.

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One major company that’s blazing the cruelty-free trail is Aveda, a leading manufacturer of shampoos, conditioners, hairstyling products, cleansers, perfumes, makeup, and spa products. Founded in 1978 by Horst Rechelbacher, Aveda uses freshly distilled plants and flower essences to create makeup as well as hair care, skin care, and body care products based on aromatherapy. Aveda relies on human studies of the physiological effects of botanical ingredients to develop its broad range of products.

Aveda’s rich shampoos and conditioners turn your morning shower into a luxurious sensory experience! Rosemary Mint Shampoo adds body to your “mane,” while the PETA-popular Shampure offers a garden of lavender, orange, and 25 other floral and herbal extracts. Blue Malva adds silvery brightness to gray hair while reducing brassiness in color-treated hair. Made especially for brunettes, Aveda’s Clove Shampoo enhances warm tones and contains organic coffee. But don’t drink it!

After your shower, you can reach for more Aveda products to primp your healthy, shiny, and revitalized head of hair. From Flax Seed/Aloe Strong Hold Sculpting Gel and Volumizing Tonic to Brilliant Finishing Gloss and Light Elements Reviving Mist, Aveda has something for you.

Pamper yourself with Aveda’s body lotions, moisturizers, and jojoba-based massage blends. (The “personal blend” offers “the perfect amount of slip”—oh, my!) And add color with Aveda’s luscious collection of cosmetics.

Best of all, Aveda’s products are cruelty-free, making you beautiful inside and out. Aveda products are sold primarily through boutiques and professional salons and are available in more than 20 countries, including the U.S., the U.K., Australia, and Italy.

For more information on Aveda, please visit Aveda online.

Search for more cruelty-free products.

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Read more: http://www.peta.org/living/beauty/aveda/#ixzz2nyX5jvnj

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