First things first, let's cover the top 2 class of ingredients we will not use, and why:
- The first class of raw materials we will never use are those that are known or are thought to be endocrine disruptors. To put it simply, an endocrine disruptor is a compound that tends to behave similarly to another, causing a hormone to be, shall we say… "confused", and therefore, over time, triggering reactions it wasn't supposed to, in our bodies. If you are a woman, you probably have heard about what hormones can do to your mood. Sadly, endocrine disruptors can cause much bigger problems both in men and women from thyroid related disorders, to reproductive health, to neurodevelopmental disorders in children, adrenal & metabolic disorders etc. It is for these reasons that our standard rejects the use of Parabens, and Phtalates among others, even though there are arguments that show that low dose exposure may not necessarily cause adverse effects.
- The second class consists of products that do not complement the nature of skin or hair, being harsh, with the ability to cause drying, irritation, or damage. These are ingredients such as strong surfactants (detergents) such as sodium lauryl, and other sulfates, or caustic ingredients such as sodium hydroxides and other types of strong bases found in products often marketed for curly hair.
Next, Let's go over what we aspire to:
- Natural ingredients: We believe that nature knows best. Whenever possible, we choose to include natural materials, from the African continent preferably, for the simple reason that Nature has already found solutions to most of the design challenges we think we have. So we do our best to watch and learn from Mother Nature herself.
- Making products that are Safe for Kids. Gentle is our motto, and we think personal care could/should be shared by the whole family!
The 4 points above form the basis of the Iraba Standard, which guides us daily.
We inspire ourselves from a number of sources to create our standard including peer reviewed Journal Articles, Canada's list of Restricted for Use in Cosmetic Products (Hotlist), the State of California Proposition 65, the Wholefoods body care standards, the PubChem Open Chemistry Database, and the work of published authors such as the tightly curly ingredients dictionary.
For more information on the WHO 2012 list of endocrine disruptors click here
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