I recently discovered that my Ecover hand wash contained Sodium Lauryl Sulfate. I know! Now I admit I am partly to blame for the oversight. I needed hand soap and quickly added the Ecover brand to my Ocado shopping. I trusted them - they are eco-friendly, etc and since I was in a rush I didn't conduct the background research. But come on, Ecover, SLS?
For a bit about Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), a foaming agent that is a human irritant, see the Environment Working Group's Skin Deep: Cosmetic Safety Database. It's a moderate hazard on their database, but considering my toddler is going to use it and little ones are more sensitive and susceptible, I want to be damn sure it is safe. (He just LOVES to wash his hands, and would nearly every 20 minutes if I would let him.)
It ain't easy being green. So I spent my Sunday morning looking for safe, cost-effective alternatives to the Ecover hand soap.
I found the Method Olive Leaf Moisturizing Hand Wash (300 ml for £3.99), but it contains Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES, a cousin of SLS), Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate*, Sodium Lauromphoacetate*, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate. Not really any better than Ecover.
We've used Neal's Yard Citrus Hand Wash in the past, but for £10.90 for 200 ml it is quite a pricey selection. With 62% organic ingredients, it doesn't contain SLS or SLES, but uses Cocamidopropyl betaine, which is a known human immune system toxicant. Augh!
I then found Waitrose's Organic Purifying Hand Wash (£3.89 for 200 ml). The ingredients include: Potassium Sunflowerate, Potassium Cocoate, Glycerin, so you don't have to worry about a scary foaming toxic agent. And not a bad price either for 93% organic ingredients.
Green People Organic Liquid Soap (£6.99 for 200 ml) clearly labels its ingredients: *Potassium Oleate (from Sunflower Oil), *Potassium Cocoate (from Coconut Oil), *Glycerin (Plant-derived), Betaine (from Sugar Beet), etc. -- with 93.89% organic products! Very transparent, very admirable in an industry of greenwashing and smoke and mirrors.
So many choices! Hope this brief overview helps! xx