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Beyond Skin Deep

Beautycounter Skincare

In the wondrous world of skincare, where men and women are spoilt for choice, with products that promise to make us look and feel great, the safety of the ingredients is usually the farthest thing from our minds. The reality is that even with the thousands of chemicals found in skincare products, the U.S. government does not require health or safety testing is done on skincare products before they get into the hands of the consumers. 

Beautycounter is a skincare and makeup company devoted to empowering women and men to use safe skincare products. The organization’s mission is to get safer products into the hands of everyone and help create a healthier world. The brand believes that healthy-looking skin starts with products that are formulated with clean, effective ingredients, yet with the ability to hydrate, refresh and rejuvenate.

Beautycounter is committed to a health and safety standard that goes well beyond what is legally required in the United States. It created The Never List™ listing more than 1,800 questionable ingredients that are excluded from the skincare/makeup line. 

The Never List™

Benzalkonium Chloride

A disinfectant used as a preservative and surfactant associated with severe skin, eye, and respiratory irritation and allergies. Found in: sunscreens, moisturizers.

Butylated Hydroxyanisole and Butylated Hydroxytoluene

Synthetic antioxidants used to extend shelf life. They are likely carcinogens and hormone disruptors and may cause liver damage. Found in: lipsticks, moisturizers, diaper creams and other cosmetics.

Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid (EDTA)

A chelating (binding) agent added to cosmetics to improve stability. May be toxic to organs. Found in: hair color, moisturizers.


A skin-lightening chemical that inhibits the production of melanin and is linked to cancer, organ toxicity and skin irritation. Found in: skin-lightening creams.


Sunscreen agent and ultraviolet light absorber linked to irritation, sensitization, allergies and possible hormone disruption. Found in: sunscreen, moisturizer.

Parabens (methyl-, isobutyl-, propyl- and others)

A class of preservatives commonly used to prevent the growth of bacteria and mold. Parabens are endocrine (or hormone) disruptors, which may alter important hormone mechanisms in our bodies. Found in: shampoo, face cleanser, body wash, body lotion, foundation.

Phthalates (DBP, DEHP, DEP and others)

A class of plasticizing chemicals used to make products more pliable or to make fragrances stick to skin. Phthalates disrupt the endocrine system and may cause birth defects. Found in: synthetic fragrance, nail polish, hairspray and plastic materials.

Polyethylene glycol (PEG compounds)

PEGs are widely used in cosmetics as thickeners, solvents, softeners and moisture-carriers. Depending on manufacturing processes, PEGs may be contaminated with measurable amounts of ethylene oxide and 1,4-dioxane, which are both carcinogens. Found in: creams, sunscreen, shampoo.

Synthetic flavor or fragrance

An engineered scent or flavoring agent that may contain any combination of 3,000-plus stock chemical ingredients, including hormone disruptors and allergens. Fragrance formulas are protected under federal law’s classification of trade secrets and therefore can remain undisclosed. Found in: all types of cosmetics.

Triclosan and Triclocarban

Antimicrobial pesticides toxic to the aquatic environment; may also impact human reproductive systems. Found in: liquid soap, soap bars, toothpaste.

Becoming knowledgeable about skincare products and the selection of safer options is a win-win to make you not only look and feel great, but stay healthy too. 

The Never List™ was sourced from the Beautycounter website: