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Sephora Is Going Greener by Adding to Its Banned Ingredient List for Clean Products

Woman with Sephora Shopping Bag
A shopper carries a Sephora bag. Charles Mostoller/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Calling all ingredient-savvy skin-care lovers: Sephora is stepping up its clean beauty game.

If you’ve perused the shelves at Sephora lately or have spent hours stalking its digital counterpart (guilty as charged), you’ve surely come across the beauty megastore’s Clean at Sephora program. The specially curated assortment of skin, hair, fragrance and makeup products officially launched back in 2018 with the purpose of making it easier to get your hands on clean beauty. To get that bright-green Clean at Sephora seal of approval, brands had to make sure its products left out 13 controversial ingredients. Now, Sephora is expanding that ‘formulated without’ list to ban over 50 different ingredients from its products.

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As of this month, products purchased with Sephora’s Clean seal of approval won’t contain ingredients such as BHA (Butylated hydroxyanisole), Ethanolamines DEA/TEA/MEA/ETA, Toluene, Carbon Black, Mercury and Mercury Compounds, Aluminum Salts, Lead and Lead Acetate. That’s just a handful of ingredients on its new list, proving that Sephora is serious about transforming at least partially into a clean beauty haven.

In addition to the new ingredient ban, Sephora is requiring that Clean at Sephora brands test for contaminants like 1, 4 Dioxane, a chemical that’s shown to be a potential health hazard. Sephora notes in a press release that it also now has thresholds in place to monitor the levels of certain ingredients. For example, according to the updated ingredient ban list, synthetic fragrances must be below 1% in hair, skin and makeup products.

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So if you’re wondering what this ingredient ban means for some of your favorite natural beauty products, you can check out the list on the store’s site. But to give you some point of reference, Sephora launched its Clean at Sephora assortment with 61 brands in 2018, and even after the ingredient-ban update, there are 68 brands that meet those strict requirements. Such brands include buzzy bestsellers like Lululemon, Glow Recipe, First Aid Beauty, Tatcha, Drunk Elephant and so many more.

Hopefully this news gets you excited to add a new Clean at Sephora product to your shopping cart in the near future — or to at least impress your friends with your new skin-care ingredient knowledge.

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