Reading the Label of Your Favorite Beauty Product

Fortunately, you don’t have to be a chemist to understand the ingredients in your everyday products. In fact, understanding product labels is easier than it seems.

Let’s break down the ingredient label of a product you probably have on your bathroom shelf – lotion.

Different beauty products have varying ingredient lists, but one factor is consistent: safety. U.S. regulations under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act ensure that the cosmetic ingredients and products you rely on are safe. The U. S. Food and Drug Administration is responsible for regulating cosmetics and personal care products.

Before a tube of lotion or bottle of shampoo makes it to your home, it goes through stringent testing by researchers at cosmetics and personal care products companies. Even if you can’t decipher every line of an ingredient list, you can rest assured that the products you love are held to the highest standards of safety and quality. And you can always review the label to learn which ingredient is used more than another. Ingredients higher up on the label exist in larger amounts—you’ll note that water is commonly the first ingredient listed on a label.

Want to learn more about the story behind the label? Check out our in-depth guide to cosmetic ingredient labeling. If you’re still curious, our A-Z Ingredient list can answer your ingredient questions from acacia catechu gum to zinc pyrithione.