Saturday, August 1, 2015

Consumer Alert: The Honest Company Sunscreen

Jessica Alba's billion dollar start-up, The Honest Company, might known for its organic and "safe" baby and household products, sold on her website and also at retailers like Target. But furious parents are saying the company's sunscreen doesn't work.

According to Business Insider, Chicago mother Gretta Stabler purchased The Honest Company's SPF 30 sunscreen at Costco (shown here, and also available at Target). During a recent trip to the pool, she applied sunscreen to her 6-year-old daughter Maggie four times, Stabler claims.

"She got really burned on her arms, shoulders, legs face, pretty much everywhere. I was angry," Stabler said. The Food and Drug Administration told NBC that companies are responsible for testing the effectiveness of their own products. The company says the product was tested by an independent third party, and is safe when its used properly, NBC reported. The Honest Company recently reduced the amount of zinc, an ingredient that protects skin from the sun, according to NBC. The company says it added other ingredients instead.

Amazon reviews for the sunscreen are largely negative. About 57% of the 135 people who reviewed the product gave it one star.'s reviews are a bit kinder, and complain more about the sticky/greasy feeling the product leaves vs. the lack of sun protection. But with so many great sunscreens on the market to choose from, my advice would be to avoid this one until the folks at The Honest Company work out the issues with the ingredients.


R. said...

Everything about this company rubs me the wrong way. It's a billion dollar snake oil operation. I'm completely unsurprised the product that costs ten times as much as a conventional one, has a "celebrity" (dubious at best) name attached, and says "honest!" on the packaging doesn't work. Meanwhile, I'm on my 3rd tube of luxury "Up&Up Kids" sunscreen this summer and no one in my family has yet to receive a burn. It is hugely unfortunate, however, that small children have received such horrible burns because of the specious claims of the "Honest" company. The photos on the Amazon reviews were horrible.

Target Addict said...

R.: I am a bit dubious as well, although I'm not ready to trash all their products yet. I have tried their household products, and some work well, and some not so well. I find that Target's in-store inventory of Honest (at least at my local stores) is spotty at best, and when I try to order online many things are consistently out of stock or backordered, which is irritating. It will be really interesting to see how she does with her beauty line (to launch this Fall).

Regarding Up & Up sunscreen: it is actually highly rated by Consumer Reports (I've blogged about this before) and a great choice of sunscreen!