Is Essential Care ethical?
Our research highlights very few ethical issues with Odylique/Essential Care Organics. The company has done well in our rating system in a number of categories, including environmental reporting, palm oil, pollutions and toxics, human rights, supply chain management, animal testing, company ethos, and controversial technologies.
Below we outline some of these issues. To see the full detailed stories, and Essential Care's overall ethical rating, please sign in or subscribe.
Trading ethically was said to be one of the company’s priorities. All products were sourced from organic-standard suppliers and many were also Fairtrade certified. It said, “We are looking forward to being able to use even more certified Fairtrade ingredients as they become available.” The products were hand-made in the company’s Suffolk workshop, and it said that it was committed to sourcing locally where possible. As it had effective practices in place to ensure workers’ rights in its supply chain, through its commitment to organic, Fairtrade and local ingredients and had a turnover of under £10.2 million, it received Ethical Consumer’s best rating for Supply Chain Management.
The company also received Ethical Consumer’s best rating for Environmental Reporting. Here’s why: Odylique said that it is committed to encouraging organic agriculture, creating healthy skincare without toxic chemicals, as well as trading equitably with Fairtrade certified suppliers. All ingredients used were sourced from organic-standard and where possible local suppliers. The company was also making efforts to switch to more sustainable packaging, for example it had replaced all its 200ml bottles, 50g and 175g jars with those made from 100% recycled materials (old milk bottles in fact!). The company was therefore considered to be providing a social and environmental alternative, and as a company with a turnover of under £10.2 million, it received our best rating.
Odylique had also worked hard to address environmental issues specific to the cosmetics sector. It did not intentionally use palm oil, palm kernel oil or palm oil derivatives in any of its products due to widespread deforestation associated with its sourcing. However some ingredients sometimes used palm oil as an input material, and for these it sought assurances from suppliers that the palm was RSPO certified. It also stated that it did not use any synthetic chemical irritants and possible allergens like artificial fragrance, and had a list of toxics that it also wouldn’t use.
Endorsed in Naturewatch Foundation's Compassionate Shopping Guide, Odylique stated: “Our products are tested on a panel of human volunteers who have sensitive and allergy-prone skin. We NEVER test on animals. We ensure that our raw materials suppliers and all our distributors follow the same policy.” It also did not use any ingredients tested on animals since 2003.
Odylique had a strong company ethos, selling only organic cosmetics and therefore received a positive half mark under Politics. This commitment to organic ingredients also meant that the company would not use any GMO ingredients, and was therefore considered to have a positive policy on this controversial technology.