How do they demonstrate product safety?

PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
I just came across this brand called Mother Dirt that "brags" they don't use preservatives in their products.
They say their products have a shelf life of 8 weeks which seems about right.

I just wonder how they can demonstrate their products are safe.


  • DavidDavid Member
    edited July 2016
    I think we are getting closer every day to cosmetics stored in our refrigerators next to food. In that case they should be tested the same way food is. I am not an expert in microbiology but 8 weeks sounds to me like a very strange shelf life, since if the product is prone to bacterial contamination it usually goes much faster - if not-it goes much slower.
  • BobzchemistBobzchemist Member, PCF student
    I'm pretty sure that those guys are actually selling (or claim they're selling) live bacterial cultures. I have no idea how you prove safety with something like that.
    Robert Zonis, Sr. Formulation Chemist, Beaumont Products "All opinions and comments expressed are my own, have no relation to Beaumont Products, are fully copyrighted, and may not be used without written permission."
  • DavidDavid Member
    @Bobzchemist  You mean the shelf life, 8 weeks, is how long their microbes "live"? - then they should be safer after 8 weeks?
  • BelassiBelassi Member, PCF student
    Maybe the good bacteria are supposed to eat bad bacteria. (Laughing)
    Cosmetic Brand Creation. Concept to name to IMPI search to logo and brand registration. In-house graphic design inc. Pantone specs. Cosmetic label and box design & graphics.
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    For some of their products they are selling a live bacterial culture. This is their AO Mist product

    But for their standard shampoo and body wash products, they are simply claiming that they enhance the results of the AO mist.  The shampoo is just a Glucoside / Betaine blend
  • ozgirlozgirl Member, PCF student
    Scary stuff.

    Maybe 8 weeks is the time it usually takes for the microorganisms in the shampoo to start showing obvious signs of contamination (odour/ colour changes), which we all know is long after the microorganisms are actually growing.

    The products are also fragrance free so they aren't even hiding the preservative in the fragrance.

  • BartJBartJ Member
    One thing that came to my mind is the magnesium chloride in the mist.
    I've seen a product once called magnesium oil. It was a 60% magnesium chloride 40% water.
    That's all. It passed the challenge test.
    Not saying 60% is the effective preservative concentration for MgCl. Perhaps it will work at lower level as well. That particular product had 60%.
  • Bill_TogeBill_Toge Member, Professional Chemist
    edited July 2016
    from a bit of googling, I found out that the parent company (AOBiome LLC) has a lot of senior staff with experience in the pharmaceutical industry, and the company appears to be doing clinical trials with these bacteria with a long-term aim of using them in medicines

    so on the surface at least, they don't seem to be your average fly-by-night snake-oil peddlers

    with that in mind I'm guessing, maybe optimistically, that the products are made under sterile conditions, and to order; given their short shelf life, trying to manufacture and store large amounts of them would be a logistical nightmare

    @BartJ that product most likely passed a challenge test because there was not enough available water for microbes to survive in it
    UK based formulation chemist. Strongest subjects: hair styling, hair bleaches, hair dyes (oxidative and non-oxidative) I know some stuff about: EU regulations, emulsions (O/W and W/O), toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoos, other toiletries
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