What is actually in your makeup?

Look at your favorite lipstick, foundation, bronzer or blush and chances are you’ll find one of the following ingredients- Cochineal dye, E120, Carmine, Natural red 4 or Crimson lake.

These synonymous terms are used in the cosmetic industry to disguise the actual ingredient which is actually made by crushing a parasitic Cochineal beetle. This beetle is native to Mexico and South America and produces carminic acid which is a natural deterrent to predators because of it’s extremely bitter taste. The carminic acid is even more concentrated in the females eggs as it deters ants and other insects from eating them. The acid also happens to have a bright crimson color.

In order to produce the dye, the entire beetle is dried and then crushed into a fine powder (legs, bodies, eggs and all). The powder is boiled in ammonia or sodium carbonate and then filtered. Next, aluminum is added to precipitate the red aluminum salt. Other substances such as lime may be added to change the color to purple. Finally, this powder is added to multiple types of cosmetics for coloring.

Although the FDA has not banned the use of carmine, there is significant concern over its risk of allergic reaction. The Center for Science in the Public Interest made a request to the FDA in 2006 that all products containing Carmine also have a warning label explicitly stating that it may cause severe allergic reactions and anaphylactic shock. This request was declined by the FDA.

Here at Pronounce Products, we decided to take things into our own hands to give you a better option when buying your cosmetics. Our products are not only safe and organic but you can also “Pronounce” the ingredients. For coloring, we use things like naturally occurring clays, fruit and flower extracts, and cocoa powder.

Check out our available products by clicking here

cochineal beetle dye