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Would you say Chemical Free or Free From?



When I first started writing this blog I commonly used the term "chemical free" when referring to natural products that did not use synthetic "nasty" ingredients. This is a term I had picked up from years of buying and researching skincare that did not contain SLS, SLES, parabens, petrochemicals, DEA, PEG, artificial colours & fragrance, tricolsan, phthalates, formaldehyde. I find it a quick recognisable term to use especially when tweeting. Just recently it has come to my attention that some people have a problem with the term "chemical free". The reason they object to the term is everything in life is a chemical, for instance water is a chemical and a common ingredient in skincare so nothing is truly chemical free.

You may have notice a while back I switched to referring to products as "free from". There were two reasons for this. 1. to please those that did not like the term chemical free 2. not every product I review is 100% natural and may contain the occasional synthetic ingredients which people like to avoid. I recently tweeted with Sharon of Alaya Beauty on this subject. She informed me that the problem with "Free From" for UK brands is the EU are trying to stop them from using the phrase. Sharon tweeted a link to an article about this which you can read for yourself over on The Ecologist.

I have been racking my brains to think how else you could promote a product which does not contain the ingredients which many of us try to avoid. The phrase "natural" can also be misleading as I have demonstrated numerous times on my blog. A product containing ingredients from nature does not mean it is free from synthetic ones. As someone who lives with food allergies, I understand the world of free from labelling. A skincare product with a free from label, listing the ingredients not used, is attractive to me, easily understood and recognisable.

On a side note I've seen a few rude tweets to Companies (and me) for using the term chemical free. What ever happen to polite debate? Argue the case for not using the term don't be rude to people. I would be interested to hear from my readers. What are your thoughts on terms like "chemical free" and "free from". Do you welcome the proposed changes or object?


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