Johnson & Johnson’s annual company sales exceeds $65 billion (in 2012). They also carry a popular baby shampoo used worldwide – but how good is this shampoo for babies, and how safe is it?
User reviews have claimed that the dermatitis around their scalp completely cleared up after using this product. It also works as a face wash and a gentle cleanser to remove makeup in adults. However, some who have used this product also claim that it doesn’t properly clean their hair; instead, it leads to a build up of residue (which may be due to the fact that it is formulated for babies). On the other hand, it is relatively inexpensive and can be bought for $2.99-$6.99, depending on which country you buy it from.
Lets take a close look at their ingredients.
Their ingredients are rather, worrying. The shampoo is marketed as a “pure and gentle” shampoo that is tear-free, but if you look closely at their ingredients, Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a surfactant that can be irritating to the eyes, Peg-80 is carcinogenoc, and Quaternium – 15 is a chemical that releases the carcinogen fomraldehyde. In addition, the shampoo also contains fragrance, which is a potential irritant for babies. (Whenever you see the word “fragrance” in a product, it means that the ingredient used to make the fragrance is protected by trade secret laws, and can contain any number of potentially dangerous chemicals). Lastly, artificial colouring and dyes (Yellow 10 and Orange 4) are also used – all of which interfere with a child’s brain development.
Countless news articles have backlashed against this, including The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. This organization successfully secured a 11/15/11 agreement with Johnson & Johnson “for reducing or gradually phasing out trace amounts of potentially cancer-causing chemicals” from Baby Shampoo. However, Johnson & Johnson have said that it will take them 3.5 years to remove carcinogenic chemicals and other potentially harmful substances from their products. Unfortunately, this agreement is limited and only restricted to the U.S. market.
An EWG study confirmed that 80 percent of children’s products marked as “gentle and non-irritating” contain ingredients linked to allergies or skin and eye irritations, according to government and industry sources.This can be concerning for parents, who are often the ones who choose what products their child will use.
Unfortunately, if you want carcinogen-free baby shampoo from Johnson & Johnson in the United States, you need to pay double the price for the company’s “Natural” brand of baby shampoo. The best option would be to go for a product that is produced with as many natural substances as possible, preferably without carcinogens, such as these baby shampoos found here.