- Most ingredients are readily biodegradable
- Any palm oil derivatives appear to be from accredited sources
- Packaging is recyclable in most kerbside programs
- Contains chemicals that are very toxic to aquatic life
- Includes Vitamin E
- Limited data available for many of the natural extracts
Grown Alchemist focuses on product innovation to leverage the body’s natural capability to slow or reverse aging. The company is based in Melbourne, Australia.
Their Mandarin and Rosemary Leaf Body Cream comes in two sizes; 120 mL, which comes in an aluminium tube, or 500 mL, which comes in a plastic bottle. It is good that a larger size is available, because being able to buy in bulk can reduce the amount of packaging used and transport emissions. The packaging for both options should be recyclable in most kerbside programs.
The main ingredients, aside from aloe vera extract and water, are fats or derivatives from vegetable oils such as sweet almond oil and olive oil. These should all be readily biodegradable, so a significant amount should be broken down during waste water treatment, which will limit the amount released to the environment. However, a small amount will still be released to the environment, and some of these ingredients are very toxic to aquatic life.
In addition to sweet almond oil and olive oil, some of the ingredients in this product could be derived from palm oil. I couldn’t find a palm oil policy on the Grown Alchemist website, but I did find a response to a question on their Facebook page. The response said that Grown Alchemist uses accredited sustainable palm oil sources outside South-East Asia. This sounds okay, but it is difficult to determine how good it is without details on which accreditation scheme is being used (or if this information is even still current).
The other ingredients are all natural extracts. Limited data is available for most of these. Natural doesn’t always mean better but, as natural extracts, the chance of them being chemicals of highest concern is low. Where there is data available, it shows that the natural extracts are readily biodegradable and either toxic or very toxic to aquatic life. The exception is Vitamin E (tocopherol). This ingredient is only inherently biodegradable, and is harmful to aquatic life.
But does it work?
Considering how well a product works is a big factor in determining whether a product is a good one or not. A product that does not work is a waste.
Image credit: The Weekend Wild