Why companies don't show the ingredients in their cleaning products.
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Seventh Generation

Have you ever looked at the label of a cleaning supply and noticed that — unlike food and cosmetics — there's no list of ingredients?

The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, which was enacted to ensure the chemical safety of stuff we put in or on our bodies, doesn't cover cleaning products.



Photo by Maz Ali/Upworthy.

That's kind of odd, since bodily exposure to cleaning chemicals happens pretty frequently.

GIF from "The Colbert Report."

Companies that make household cleaning products aren't required by law to print a full list of ingredients on their packaging.

Consumer advocate Sloan Barnett told EarthTalk, the Environmental Protection Agency "only requires companies to list 'chemicals of known concern' on their labels."

She explained that the big loophole is there aren't any testing requirements for most of the chemicals in cleaning products — by the companies, the EPA, or the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which has primary (if not weak) regulatory authority over household chemicals.


Photo by Maz Ali/Upworthy.

The reason for the secrecy around cleaning product ingredients is competition — companies that argue against disclosure do so on the basis that it's proprietary information that their success hinges on.

Just because the ingredients aren't listed doesn't mean products are bad or unsafe, but it is curious there is so little regulation.

On the plus side, companies started volunteering some of their ingredients in 2010. But in a 2009 interview, former Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY), whose mandatory labeling bills have never made it to a vote, said he wasn't all that impressed:

“What good is posting something on a Web site when you are on your knees ingesting floor wax? ... Voluntary compliance is an oxymoron. It may be good public relations, but not good policy.

Photo by Maz Ali/Upworthy.

The chemicals industry may be resistant to change, but the consumers who use their products say they want it.

Legislatures across the country are being pressured to consider state laws to fill in where federal laws are falling short.

"In the U.S., chemicals are innocent until proven guilty."

Other countries model some alternative options for regulation. According to the Green Science Policy Institute's Dr. Arlene Blum, "In Europe they reverse the burden of proof. Manufacturers have to show that chemicals are safe before they introduce them. In the U.S., chemicals are innocent until proven guilty," referring to the lack of testing and data required for cleaning products to enter the market.

Why should we care? More transparency would help us make more informed consumer choices.

The trust companies would build with us could even be good for business. But a lot of the industry believes strongly enough that business would suffer, so they lobby to keep labeling mandates off the books.


Image by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Until then, we can do ourselves a favor by peeling back the glossy marketing and reading beyond the fine print to find products that won't cost our health or the environment. And we can start by looking for products with the seals above, each ingredient of which has cleared the EPA's health and environmental criteria.

via USO

Army Capt. Justin Meredith used the Bob Hope Legacy Reading Program to read to his son and family while deployed in the Middle East.

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One of the biggest challenges deployed service members face is the feeling of being separated from their families, especially when they have children. It's also very stressful for children to be away from parents who are deployed for long periods of time.

For the past four years, the USO has brought deployed service members and their families closer through a wonderful program that allows them to read together. The Bob Hope Legacy Reading Program gives deployed service members the ability to choose a book, read it on camera, then send both the recording and book to their child.

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Cayce LaCorte explains why virginity doesn't exist.

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There is also a whole slew of religious mind games associated with virginity that can give people some serious psychological problems associated with sex.

Losing one's virginity has also been blown up way beyond proportion. It's often believed that it's a magical experience—it's usually not. Or that after having sex for the first time people can really start to enjoy living life—not the case.

What if we just dropped all of the stigmas surrounding virginity and instead, replaced them with healthy attitudes toward sex and relationships?

Writer Cayce LaCorte is going viral on TikTok for the simple way she's taught her five daughters to think about virginity. They don't have to. LaCorte shared her parenting ideas on TikTok in response to mom-influencer Nevada Shareef's question: "Name something about the way you raised your kids that people think is weird but you think is healthy."

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The Rock and Oscar Rodriguez on Instagram.

As the old saying goes, “do good and it will come back to you in unexpected ways.”

Sometimes those “unexpected ways” come in four-wheel drive.

Oscar Rodriguez is a Navy veteran, church leader and personal trainer in Culver City, California. More important than that, he is a good person with a giving heart. In addition to taking care of his 75-year-old mom, he also makes meals for women victims of domestic violence.

Rodriguez thought he won the ultimate prize: going to a special VIP screening of Dwayne Johnson's new film "Red Notice," and getting pulled up on stage by The Rock himself. But it only got better from there.

Thanking him for his service, praising him for giving back to his community and bonding with him as a fellow “mamma’s boy,” Johnson stands with Rodriguez on the stage exchanging hugs … until Johnson says “I wanna show you something real quick.”

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@bluffbakes on Tiktok

Chloe Sexton—baker, business owner, mother—knows all too well about "daddy privilege," that is, when men receive exorbitant amounts of praise for doing normal parental duties. You know, the ones that moms do without so much as a thank you.

In a lighthearted (while nonetheless biting) TikTok video, Chloe shares a "fun little story about 'daddy privilege'" that has now gone viral—no doubt due in part because working moms can relate to this on a deep, personal and infuriating level.

Chloe's TED Talks-worthy rant begins with:

"My husband has a job. I have a business, my husband has a job. Could not make that any clearer, right? Well, my bakery requires that we buy certain wholesale ingredients at this place called Restaurant Depot every week. You've seen me do videos of it before where I'm, like, wearing him or was massively pregnant buying 400 pounds of flour and 100 pounds of butter, and that's a weekly thing. The list goes on and on, like — it's a lot."
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