September 12, 2007

natural stores have method

Not long ago I was wondering why Method cleaning products are not found in local natural food stores near my home. I wondered if it was politics or ingredients that kept them away. I was looking for the validation of the product by having it sold at natural markets because many cleaning products keep their ingredients secret.

That all changed today when I went to a grand opening of a new Whole Foods in my area. The store had a large section of Method products in the cleaning aisle! I am excited because Method is a local San Francisco company and their products smell great.

I know I am still due to write more in depth about natural cleaning options, but for now I'll keep using my cucumber all-purpose spray and mint window cleaner.


Anonymous said...

GASP!! I *love* method products because they are the only ones that don't leave me with constricted lungs and writhing in respiratory pain. But I've always wondered just how "natural" they are. I just got done cleaning my floor with the grapefruit all-purpose cleaner. sniff sniff - wonderful!

Anonymous said...

One of my beliefs is that a company will brag if their items are truly natural, and keep them secret if they have something to hide. I don't buy Method anymore because their is "truth in labeling", and Method, I fear is not telling the whole truth. Cheryl

Gift of Green said...

Interesting, Cheryl... Go on...inquiring minds want to know!

Anonymous said...

Inquiring minds want to know....but Method may not want you to....

I am glad that these products don't cause anyone to choke (but me) since I can't believe they are passing as “natural” products. But, the sad fact is that any company which manufacturers cosmetic or cleaning products can claim they are "natural", since there is no standard for the term, and the FDA does not regulate cosmetic or cleaning product industry! In fact, a company can put just about anything in their product, and not have to test the ingredient for effectiveness or safety. That is exactly why we have to be diligent in our knowledge about “truth in labeling”, and how companies throw out ‘buzz words” to make them look “natural” (whatever that is), or organic, when in fact they are hiding behind the law that allows them to do so.

I looked up a few Method products on their website. I am happy to see a much better ingredient list than on their products (at least better than their older bottles, anyway). The Cucumber Spray included an ingredient described as, “corn or coconut derived surfactant”. That is a broad term for “sodium laureth sulfate”, the very ingredient which gives you the foaming effect we all love in our shampoos, toothpaste, soaps, etc. It also happens to be an industrial-grade detergent and skin irritant! It is also one of the top 12 ingredients to avoid in personal care products due to its harshness and its ability to open your skin pores to allow other undesirable chemicals to enter your body though the biggest organ of your body...your skin!

Method products also contains “color”. Why and what color? FDA # what? Some colors are much worse than others. Another questionable ingredient... “fragrant oil blend”. That could mean a blend of essential oils (which is nice, but tell me which essential oils in case I am allergic), or it could mean a tiny bit of essential oils blended with a lot of synthetic fragrances. Synthetic fragrances are also on the “NO NO” list, since fragrances can be any of about 200 synthetic chemical compounds referred to as phthalates. Phthalates are considered neurotoxins and human system immune toxicants, and should be avoided at all cost. Other ingredients listed in Method products: “blend of naturally and biodegradable surfactants”, preservatives, and “light stabilizer”. What ARE these ingredients? Again, they are GENERAL descriptives of chemicals used. I want to know the names of those chemicals/ingredients, so I can look them up and be sure I am not allergic, or willing to use products which include those ingredients!

Go here to look up the safety of cosmetic products and ingredients at the Enviromental Working Group, Skin Deep website. Off my soapbox. Sorry this is sooooo long.

mom go green said...

Cheryl, oooooh, you're good!

This is all great info. i had been reading about these very issues and tried to summize the same thing in my post, "safe cleaning".

My question is, since there are no regulations and many companies are not listing all their ingredients (even "green" companies), how do you know if one is really worse than another?

I agree that it would be best to disclose all the info. I am sure many companies have a greener image than they truly are.

I went back to the study from women and the environment and saw that Seventh Generation and Biokleen do disclose all their ingrdients. Maybe that is a good reason to stick with them for now? Their packages may not be as sexy, but their products are good.

Gift of Green said...

Yowser! I have to admit I was skeptical of Method for one was in my local Target first! I'm sure Target has a lot of eco-friendly, fair trade products...right? I guess Target is just one of my other un-green addictions. ; ) Thanks for the information MGG and Cheryl.