Certification Roundup: EWG Verified™

Richard Block

Aug 11, 2021 · 4 min read

The Environmental Working Group, an advocacy group that promotes environmental health and safety in the United States, runs a certification program called EWG Verified™ to Brands that want to use the trademarked EWG Verified logo on product packaging. EWG’s goal is to notify consumers about what’s in the products they buy and use, so that they can make healthier consumer decisions. The group states:

With thousands of consumer products on the market, it can be overwhelming to know which ones are safer and healthier for your family. The EWG VERIFIED™ mark does the work for you. When you see the EWG VERIFIED™ mark on a product, you can be sure it's free from EWG's chemicals of concern and meets our strictest standards for your health._

To be approved, Brands’ products must be free from certain ingredients, and must meet several other criteria that the EWG has established.

Products from brands including Beautycounter, MyChelle, Rejuva Minerals, Makes 3, Celtic Complexion, W3ll People, Cocoon Apothecary, Just The Goods, Bioassance, Jouve, Purelygreat, and Sally B’s Skin Yummies have been EWG Verified, according to the group.

The EWG also runs the Skin Deep Database, a resource designed to let users search for safety information on ingredients, brands, and products.

It’s worth noting that the EWG has been criticized by the scientific community; some of the chemicals it labels potentially dangerous have in fact been found safe in laboratory and/or real-world testing. Nevertheless, many consumers prefer to go further than government guidelines in avoiding risk, so they (and many companies) have found it helpful to seek EWG verification.

An example is Amazon’s recent decision to feature EWG Verified products as part of its effort to promote client-friendly products. Amazon’s Climate Pledge Friendly initiative is intended “to highlight products that meet sustainability standards and help preserve the natural world,” says the company. Consumers can use that portal to browse products that have been selected for their manufacturers’ commitment to improving the environment.

If you’re interested in applying to the EWG Verified program, here’s how:

  1. Review the EWG’s lists of criteria, unacceptable ingredients, and restricted ingredients.
  2. Download and complete the disclosure agreement and product ingredient spreadsheet. The spreadsheet needs to be completed for all products before verification.
  3. Review the EWG’s Safety Substantiation Notice.
  4. Complete the application form, upload the required documents, and submit payment.
  5. You will receive a progress update in two to four weeks. If the subsequent approval process is successful, you will receive a licensing contract and master affidavit from the EWG. Once the contract is finalized, you will receive training on how the mark should be used.

Information about qualifying for the certification, lists of retailers who sell EWG Verified products, documents needed to apply for Verified status, and more are available at EWG's website.

Written by

Richard Block

Richard Block is an editorial jack-of-all-trades at Goldn

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