Now is the time to ask questions

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I feel like I can breathe a little bit better this week, don’t you? Hands up in the air if you feel like the last two weeks have been a rush of every single emotion available PLUS every single thing that you had to do all at once.  Hopefully, cross fingers, we are all moving into the realm of less overall heat and leading into cooler temps. (Everyone in Texas is still shaking their heads)

So some funny things have been happening this month that have really lead me to be super introspective and focus. I will admit, I do get very passionate about research and reading medical studies on ingredients and their interactions.

And that sometimes it leads me down a very fun path.

Looking for the perfect product

This particular time, about three weeks ago, I was researching a product line because I really liked their marketing and how they told their story about they’re beginnings. But, something was throwing me off. 

Inside all of the marketing material, the product claimed to be fully transparent. The owners were all about voicing the truth and showing up. 

Perfect, me too.

We only use the best possible ingredients and let you know why we are using them.

Also me. Go on. 

We never use any items that were derived from animal products. 

We use local Texas honey in ONLY Everything for volume and texture, but nothing else has animal by-products. 

Then I came across one of the ingredients and it threw me off because everything I have learned about this ingredient is that it is animal-derived. But I wanted to give the owner and producer of the product the benefit of the doubt because that is the civil thing to do, so I didn’t write a review online for everyone to see. 

Red flags ahoy

Don’t worry my friends; I wrote an email. I wanted to know their process and was hoping that I could learn something from a fellow small-business owner. The first email I inquired about how they found a vegan form of the ingredient that I knew wasn’t vegan (nicely of course). The owner's response (I was very happy to have had the owner respond to me) was short and cordial and gave the information about where the ingredient was sourced. They were welcoming and pleasant and were happy to keep me informed of how they were using their product (exactly what they promised online).

Here’s the problem: I knew now that they were falsifying information, saying they were using one ingredient and actually using another. 

So I sent another email with all of my backup research because I would rather go down in flames protecting those who don’t know how the product is made or don’t have the time (or the passion) to research every little thing. Their reply was not so wonderfully accepting like the first time, and I know that they didn’t like me pressing the issue.  

In short, they told me that they were a small company and that they didn’t know anything else about their ingredient beyond what they told me -- and that if I didn’t like their product, I could get what I wanted from a larger company. 

WHOOOOAAAA hold the phone, what????

True clean beauty — for everyone

Raise your hand if you’ve tried to be open and honest, and the other side was not cooperating. So then they did everything to shut it down and not expose themselves. I can see if someone doesn’t know how to express something personal and needs help communicating their views. What I don’t find valid is when they are falsifying information and getting away with it on the basis that they are a small family-owned company. 

NO. That’s not good enough. 

ONLY is also a small company, and I know absolutely everything that goes into my product because I helped create it with a chemist in the UK. It took nine months in the preliminary phase and four months afterward to create it specifically to standards. ONLY is like my third child. 

I didn’t respond to this email after the owner proposed just going somewhere else to receive the product that I was searching for. My standards are higher than that, and I won’t antagonize someone who is already in the corner and baring teeth. It’s not right, and it doesn’t prove a point. 

But what I will do is stand up for others by inquiring on the sites that are selling her products. They need to receive higher clarification for the misrepresentation. 

Here is my ONLY promise. I will stand up for those that can’t speak for themselves, even if it’s not my product. I want to create a dynamic where small companies work together to create something larger and better for ourselves, in turn making every product safer. If you ever get stuck, please reach out. I will help you ask the tough questions, because we should all promote transparency and work together. 

XOXO,

Nina