About Max Green Alchemy
Our early history
2004 was our Eureka moment. The ‘green’ and ‘organic’ personal care markets were growing at an unprecedented rate due to sudden consumer demand for ethical personal care products. The problem was that these products, while focusing on being natural, were often simply gray and boring. Some weren’t even natural at all – their ingredients list told a very different story.
Consumers had been hoodwinked into thinking there had to be a trade-off – choosing an environmentally clean product meant it was going to be less effective and sensual. But we knew that the right natural ingredients, correctly researched and blended, could produce solutions that really worked and were fun too! In fact the European market, in which we worked, was already doing this, so we thought that you deserved the best too! And that’s why we founded Max Green Alchemy.
Are you feeding your skin junk food? and Cosmetic Counter Intelligence
A key foundation of ours is the fact that the skin doesn’t discriminate between the chemicals coming into contact with it – it absorbs them. That’s how the myriad of ingredients found in everyday personal care products, such as parabens, lanolin and nano-particles, can passed directly into the blood stream. Research has suggested absorption of some cosmetic chemicals may create health and safety concerns, and some are just too harmful to the environment so these are ingredients we never use. To help you avoid them too, we created a watch list entitled Cosmetic Counter Intelligence. We invite you to take a look and see how many of these nine chemicals are present in the products that you use every day. Cosmetic Counter Intelligence.
Modern Max Green Alchemy
We have now created over 20 personal care product solutions for your face, hair and body. These have been recognized as the finest available by a wide range of associations including Elle Magazine (Green Stars Best Conditioner 2009) and PETA (Proggy Award for Best Cruelty-Free Personal Care Product 2008).
Our vision continues unchanged since 2004. We strive to create the finest quality personal care products. We pledge to use only ingredients of pure plant origin. And our packaging will incorporate the highest recyclable content from safe and renewable sources.
Max Green Alchemy is about honest natural products, combining value with great performance. It’s the best that you deserve.
- Earthly Beauty Exclusive
Max Green Alchemy Facial Care KitPrice$60.00
Scruff Rescue Beard OilPrice$11.99
Scruff Rescue Beard TamerPrice$16.00
Scruff Rescue Daily MoisturizerPrice$18.00
Scruff Rescue Ultimate Face ElixirPrice$20.00
Scruff Rescue Face ScrubPrice$10.00
Scruff Rescue SuperSlick Shave GelPrice$12.00
Max Green Alchemy Cosmetic Counter Intelligence
Cosmetic Counter Intelligence*
* 8 9 INGREDIENTS THAT YOU WON'T FIND IN OUR PRODUCTS
The cosmetics, hair and skin care industries use over 7,000 ingredients in products derived from natural or synthetic sources. As many as one-in-seven of these have harmful or toxic effects on the skin or body, ranging from minor skin irritation or contact dermatitis to carcinogenic implications. While risk factors appear to be greater with synthetic ingredients, they still exist with certain plant-derived ingredients. We refuse to use any ingredient where credible evidence casts doubt over its safety. This offers an ounce of prevention by excluding potentially harmful substances from our products and your usage. The following is our list of eight nine ingredients to avoid and our reasoning. Chances are that at least one is among your non-MGA personal care products.
1. PARABENS (METHYL-, PROPYL-, BUTYL- etc.)
This is a group of synthetic preservatives widely used in foods and personal care products, even many that claim to be ‘natural’ or 'organic'. Parabens are used because they are antimicrobial killing a wide range of bacteria and molds that may infect products. Recent research by Darbre et al links for the first time parabens and their estrogenic properties with human breast cancer tumors. Parabens can also be allergenic and toxic and have also been linked to asthma and eczema.
You can read the Darbre et al full report or a layman's version.
2. SODIUM LAURYL or LAURETH SULFATE (SLS or SLES)
Sodium lauryl sulfate is an inexpensive and potent detergent commonly found in foaming rinse-off products such as facial cleanser, shampoo, shower gel, soft soap, shave cream, dish soap and toothpaste. Its strong degreasing action can irritate and dry the skin, hair and scalp. Sodium laureth sulfate is somewhat milder than Sodium lauryl sulfate yet either used in shampoo can lead to episodes of dandruff or a dry flaky scalp. Used on the skin, they may cause cracking of the epidermis and severe inflammation of the underlying layer. Any product containing SLS or SLES must be thoroughly rinsed off and discontinued if rash or irritation symptoms occur.
3. PETROLATUM (Petroleum Jelly)
This is a heavy oil extracted from petroleum. It is comedogenic, meaning it does not absorb well into the skin, and thus can be pore clogging. This may trigger dermatitis, pimples or even acne. Furthermore petrolatum smothers skin so that it cannot breathe naturally and may cause discoloration of the skin. Frequently used in lip balms for extended durations, petrolatum provides quick moisturization effect while it gradually thins the skin of the lips, which eventually causes chapping and a "lip balm addiction".
4. PROPYLENE GLYCOL
An inexpensive substance derived from petroleum, propylene glycol is used as a humectant (moisture retainer), surfactant (spreading agent) and solvent (dissolving agent). In the motor vehicle industry it is used in antifreeze and hydraulic brake fluid! Studies have shown it can penetrate the outermost skin and carry other ingredients into the deeper layers of the epidermis where it often causes allergic and toxic reaction.
5. DIETHANOLAMINE (DEA) or TRIETHANOLAMINE (TEA)
These are synthetic compounds, made from ammonia and ethylene oxide, that are used in many skin lotions, eye gels, moisturizing creams, shaving foams, shampoos and dermatological soaps as emulsifiers or acidity regulators. DEA and TEA may contain nitrosamines that are potential carcinogens and can also cause severe facial and contact dermatitis.
6. IMIDAZOLIDINYL UREA and DIAZOLIDINYL UREA
These are commonly used antibacterial preservatives with poor anti-fungal action so are often combined with parabens for broad-spectrum activity. Both compounds can potentially cause skin sensitization and allergic reaction, especially in those sensitive to formaldehyde because under certain circumstances they can release this colorless and poisonous gas.
7. GSE aka GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT
Some makers of natural products claim that GSE is a natural preservative and use it in their products. However studies have identified the presence of synthetic antimicrobial agents - including methyl paraben - in commercial grapefruit seed extract. See the FDA report on GSE.
This FDA study found that when pure GSE (ie product free of contaminants) was laboratory tested against commercially available GSE as a preservative for personal care products, pure GSE had little or no natural antimicrobial attributes of its own.
This impartial study documented that commercial GSE preparations contain the synthetic compound benzethonium chloride in significant quantity to act as an antimicrobial agent. And contrary to the manufacturer's claim, this compound is not naturally occurring and it could not have been synthesized from pure GSE itself. Furthermore benzethonium chloride is a suspected carcinogen and is restricted in cosmetic use in Canada and Japan.
Manufacturer's claims about GSE sound too good to be true. This is why MGA has banned the use of GSE in our products since 2007.
8. SILICONE and 'CONES
Do not confuse silicone with silica or silicon. Silicone is a synthetic compound (commonly polydimethylsiloxane) and silicon is sand (commonly silicon dioxide). Variations of silicone include dimethicone, cyclomethicone, cyclopentasiloxane and others, of which have environmental and human persistence and known bioaccumulation problems.
Silicones are commonly used in commercial hair care products to coat hair for extreme shine, and in skin care products to coat the skin and make it feel velvety smooth. We aren't particularly fond of hair that looks like it's plastic. Instead we use active botanical ingredients such as organic shea butter, jojoba oil, olive oil, macadamia oil and rosehip seed oil that actually condition and repair hair and that are beneficial to the health of our skin.
9. ETHOXYLATED INGREDIENTS: ie PEG-, -ETH COMPOUNDS
Ethoxylated compounds have been processed with ethylene oxide which is a known human carcinogen, neurotoxin and potent skin irritant. The names of these compounds begin with PEG- or end with -eth or it may be in the middle like sodium laureth sulfate and polyethylene. In all cases, traces of ethylene oxide can remain in a product along with byproducts such as 1,4 dioxane.
9a. VEGETABLE EMULSIFYING WAX or EMULSIFYING WAX NF
This is a real sleeper because vegetables are good, right? Something is needed to make a cosmetic emulsion into a stable cream and this is the easiest way to do it. This seemingly innocuous emulsifying wax is primarily a combination of an oil, a PEG- and a polysorbate. PEG-anything is toxic (see #9 above) and polysorbate is a nice name for a polyoxyethylene ester. Despite the name, Vegetable Emulsifying Wax is not a benign or a natural ingredient.