EWG: Stop Rodan + Fields’ Misleading Claims


WASHINGTON – EWG urged the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and California’s attorney general today to stop Rodan + Fields from making misleading claims about benzophenone, a chemical that has been linked to cancer.

Rodan + Fields tells consumers to click on a link which, the company claims, provides the FDA’s views on benzophenone.

However, the link actually leads consumers to a website operated by the Personal Care Products Council, an industry trade group.

As an Esthetician, I have an immense passion for wanting to help educate people on how to become more informed cosmeceutical consumers!

The number one thing I encourage everyone to do is to learn how to READ INGREDIENT LABELS!!

Ingredients don’t lie. While people (and marketing claims) often make false representations of a product in order to increase sales- it’s the ingredients in that product that never fail to tell the “real story”. And that truth can always be found by a simple scan of the label. (for a quick overview on “How to Read Ingredient Labels”, click here.)

I’m always trying to find new ways to shed light on otherwise complex/confusing topics such as deciphering ingredients and manufacturing processes on my blog….

While I really do try my best to avoid referencing any brand in particular in a “not so positive” fashion…well, this brand has seemingly been trying to “egg me on” as of late in the form of questions from clients, an onslaught of social media posts (containing false claims and a sea of inaccurate information being spread in the form of correspondence between both inquirers and “consultants”, alike), and updates from some of my most trusted of skin care resources.

So here it is…alas… my “stake” on Rodan & Fields.

The truth of the matter is that many of Rodan & Fields’ formulations aren’t what “they’re chalked up to be”.

And the simple fact that they pulled their products away from mainstream retail sales channels (such as Nordstrom), and switched instead to selling them on a multi-level marketing platform – well, I’m sorry to say it… but that speaks for itself.

I’m not dissing all MLM companies here- I’m just simply pointing out that it’s typically a “bad sign” when a company with so much otherwise already established notoriety and financial backing decides to switch from conventional retail sales over to a sales structure in which the majority of their profits rely more on their ability to sell the “structure” than on selling the actual “product” itself….

But back to the “truth seekers”… The Ingredients.

Many of R&F’s products include dimethicone and other polymers in their formulations (and near the top of the ingredient list- meaning they are amongst the highest concentration)…(for my opinion on why “Silicones should be left out of “results oriented” skin care products”, click here.)

Not only are the majority of the “beneficial ingredients” they tout in their marketing claims located near the bottom of every list (meaning they are in very low concentration- a sneaky practice commonly referred to as “Angel Dusting”), but moreover, many of these ingredients can’t even penetrate the skin due to the presence of the larger molecular sizes of the ingredients that precede them.

These types of polymers and silicones are used for many reasons.

Firstly, they are cheap. (Heck! Why beat around the bush?)

Secondly, they provide users with a sense of immediate gratification. They sit on top of the skin – filling in lines and blurring imperfections- giving a “false” and temporary illusion that the products are doing what they claim.

But they actually impede the skin’s cellular turnover rate and are of other detriments to the skin over time and with cumulative exposure.

A great resource for looking up any ingredients you may have questions about is SKIN DEEP at EWG.org

For those with any sensitivity issues (including rosacea and autoimmunity) I highly suggest checking out DNA Skin Institute’s products at dnaskin.com

You can only purchase their products through licensed Esthetician’s – but they have a location finder on their site, so you can easily locate a professional near you.

I’ve been using their professional and at-home products for over 4 years now (after trying countless of other professional brands – including $$$ ones from abroad) and nothing compares. They finally bridged the gap between “natural” and “effective”! And the prices are also extremely reasonable.


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