about the NPA Natural standard


The Natural Products Association's Natural Seal

Scope: Personal Care and Cosmetics

Introduction: The Natural Products Association’s (NPA) Natural Standard is the first and only United States natural standard specifically created for personal care products. The Natural Standard was created through a collaboration of several prominent natural personal care companies, suppliers, and retailers such as Aubrey Organics, Burt’s Bees, California Baby, Farmasthetics, Trilogy Fragrance, Weleda, and your very own Badger. The standard was released in May of 2008 and is considered a "living document" that is intended to evolve and improve over time. The second phase of this standard is set for May of 2010. In the second phase temporarily allowed synthetic ingredients, such as synthetic fragrances, will be disallowed. In addition the NPA will begin conducting onsite audits and will require products to be labeled using the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI) names (the common universal nomenclature used for labeling personal care products and cosmetics). The NPA has been working hard to harmonize with Europe’s Na True, a similar natural standard.

Principles: The guiding principle behind the Natural Standard is to provide an attainable criterion for natural that will help consumers to differentiate between companies that are truly striving to be natural and those that are simply marketing the natural concept.

Basics: The Natural Standard has one seal only, which is simply "Natural". Products bearing the NPA Natural Seal are composed of 95% natural ingredients at minimum, however many certified products will contain well over 95% natural ingredients. Natural ingredients are defined by the NPA as Ingredients that come from, or are made from a renewable resource found in nature (Flora, Fauna, Mineral), with absolutely no petroleum compounds. The NPA also regulates how natural ingredients may be processed.

NPA certified natural products must:

  • Be made with at least 95% all natural ingredients (excluding water).
  • Contain only selected safe synthetic ingredients specifically allowed under the standard, and environmentally-friendly ingredients that are nurturing to humans and as harmless as possible to the earth
  • A synthetic non-natural ingredient can only be used when there is not a readily available natural alternative ingredient and when there are no suspected human health risks as indicated by peer-reviewed third-party scientific literature

Key prohibited ingredients are:

  • Parabens
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
  • Petrolatum/Mineral Oil/Paraffin
  • Chemical Sunscreens (Avobenzone/Oxybenzone)
  • Glycols
  • Phthalates
  • Ethoxylated ingredients such as Sodium Myreth Sulfate and Sodium Laureth Sulfate, PEGs or PPGs
  • Ethanolamines like MEA/DEA/TEA
  • Synthetic polymers (PVP/ Acrylates)
  • Formaldehyde Donors (DMDM Hydantoin/ Diazolidinyl Urea/ Methylisothiazolinone)

Other Requirements: All allowable ingredients must be generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards and must be used in accordance to the FDA’s Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). Companies adhering to the Natural Standard may not use animal testing and should strive to maximize their use of recyclable and post-consumer packaging material.

For more information please visit: www.naturalproductsassoc.org/certifiednatural

Click here to read more Badger's position on the NPA’s Natural Standard