At Vitalibis, we exclude approximately 1,400 ingredients before we start our paper formulations. This is because we care about the safety of our products. Unfortunately, many ingredients used in topical products today have studies showing linkages to organ toxicity, skin irritation, endocrine system disruption, etc.
A great resource to gain some consumer insights is the Environmental Working Groups’ Skin Deep Database. There are many sources of information online, however this is one of the most well-known and robust.
For soothing, relief related topical products, there are three main ingredients to look for when reviewing products to purchase. These are the ingredients which provide the cooling, warming sensations.
Wintergreen Oil - is an essential oil that's traditionally derived from the leaves of the wintergreen plant. Wintergreen oil is also the main ingredient which gives these types of creams their potent smell. It’s a fantastic oil.
Cinnamomum Camphora (Camphor) Bark Oil – an oil found naturally in the wood of the camphor laurel as well as in dried rosemary, mint and is a terpenoid.
Menthol - is an organic compound made synthetically or obtained from the oils of corn mint, peppermint, or other mints
THIS INGREDIENT IS NOT GREAT
Several brands on the market use other ingredients which we want to help educate you on for your decision-making purposes. Be informed. Be well.™
Lidocaine – a local anesthetic (numbing medication) that works by blocking nerve signals in your body, numbing tissue in applied areas. The EWG score this ingredient as a 3 with some concerns – “Banned or found unsafe for use in cosmetics”. Link to learn more.
After reviewing several brands on the market, we recommend understanding more about certain ingredients which are being used. Here are a few to research.
Retinyl Palmitate or Vitamin A Palmitate – EWG Score: 9
PEG 100 – EWG Score: 3 (you should always look into PEG ingredients)
Polysorbate 60 – EWG Score: 3 (another category of ingredients you should review, polysorbates)
Squalene – EWG Score: 1 (this is a fine ingredient, but PLEASE ensure this is coming from olives, not sharks!!!)
Many people read labels, however the majority don’t. We ask you to research ingredients before you making purchasing decisions, yet we know there are many ingredients with super long names. This can be daunting and confusing – we know. Two tricks to reading labels:
1) Use the EWG database to help with guidance, and do other research as desired
2) Look at the sequence of ingredients as they are listed on the Ingredient Panel. A brand following the rules will list the ingredients in order from highest percentage of the formula to the lowest (with anything under 1% of the formula being listed however desired). For many topicals, Water or Aqua will be the ingredient listed first. The soothing ingredients should be listed towards the top – within the first 6 ingredients. If the soothing ingredients are at the bottom, they are used as a smaller percentage of the overall formula.
There is a lot of variance in cost, so break down the products by the ounce knowing the main variable in cost should be associated with the quality of the full spectrum CBD oil being used in the formulation. Most of the other ingredients in these products are commodities. Also, CBD Isolate is not shown to have much impact in topical products. It’s included more as a marketing message until studies can show it has any benefits.
Vitalibis = $36 for 4 ounces (cost per ounce = $9)
Brand A = $46 for 4 ounces (cost per ounce = $11.50)
Brand B = $49.99 for 2.5 ounces (cost per ounce = $20)
Brand C = $59.95 for 4 ounces (cost per ounce = $14.99)
Brand D = $99.95 for 4 ounces (cost per ounce = $24.99)