As the third and final part of my investigation of ‘natural’ high street brands, I take a look at Lush and its cosmetics, and personal hygiene products.
I’ve been to a lot of Lush stores, I have to admit. Birmingham, London, Paris… pretty much every city I visit for more than a few days, I’ve entered into the powdery-scented shop. It’s no secret that I’ve been a big fan of Lush, posting blogs about the various products I’ve picked up and tried over the years.
So it may comes as a bit of a surprise when I say that I’ve now grown a little sceptical of the brand. While it has some incredible PR going for it – from its Against Animal Testing campaign to the Lush Prize – it’s very clear that the buck stops at cruelty-free beauty, rather than natural and cruelty-free.
Did you know that Lush only has one Soil Association certified product on its shelves? The lucky Therapy Massage Bar holds that title, but even that contains a percentage of non-organic elements. You would have thought that other products would be verified, if one has been – which leads me to believe that no other item in their range is 70%+ organic. Not one other.
Which leaves me in a little dilemma. Right now in my makeup bag, I have a number of Lush products that I truly loved, but have fallen out of love with since this revelation. My Light Yellow colour supplement and Feeling Younger skin tint contains parabens, something I used to be pretty lax about, but now I would rather find a more natural alternative – I mean, there are plenty on the market! For my Success liquid eye liner, there’s even ingredients that come up blank on EWG’s Skin Deep database – forget my key 25 Harmful Ingredients list!
After speaking to Lush, I’ve been told that their stance on parabens is that they are safe synthetics, and where they use the ingredient ‘perfume’, it’s still of a safe, green origin, but protects them from fakes being made. While this may be true, I do think that a company with such a friendly approach to cosmetics is due to take it one step further and introduce a truly green line of cosmetics in their stores.