The End of Small Natural Cosmetic Companies? – Part 2

In Part 1, Kayla Fioravanti from Essential Wholesale, Inc. in the U.S., together with a bunch of small cosmetic business owners flew to Washington DC in order to talk directly to the staff at offices of U.S. representatives Schakowsky, Markey, Baldwin, Frank and Feinstein, all co-sponsors of the H.R. 5786 The Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010.

Interesting enough, today I got message that over half a MILLION dollars were spent for lobbying to these United States representatives paid for by cosmetic giants including L’Oreal, Revlon, Avon and Proctor & Gamble. One would think why these large companies would spend all that money? Well let’s put this all very simple.

This proposed bill COULD be the end for small natural cosmetics companies, especially the ones buying organic ingredients from small farmers. These are often the creative cosmetic companies who – by using grassroots activities – have helped to change the cosmetic industry for the better.

Sometimes they brought these cosmetic giants on their knees. Just think about the fight against animal tests? A terrible practice FIERCELY defended by most of these multinational companies till the last hour. At the end they lost the battle in favour of a few small independent ‘warrior cosmetic companies’, the ones favoured by the consumer.

These multinationals have a lot at stake right now. Because more and more small cosmetic companies are around offering beautiful, truly natural high quality cosmetic products. What about the revenues of these multinationals still produce cosmetic products the old way? Multi-nationals are in support for this new bill to get their lost market share back. And they have the financial resources and necessary manpower to do whatever it costs to do what they are doing .… and they have been doing it quietly….quietly!

Small start-up companies, the ones with dreams and often great creative ideas cannot set-up business anymore because of the horrendous lab rests required, the enormous amount of paperwork needed, and the capital that must be available to finance all these ridiculous requirements. And your cosmetics will NOT be getting more safe but more expensive.

Small cosmetic entrepreneurs now will fall in the hands of cosmetic manufacturers (OEM’s) who are waiting for them and will be making their products according to the same formulations that are being made for others as well. And I bet you that many cosmetic companies will start falsifying documents in order to get faster and cheaper through the silly requirements they need to fulfil in order to survive. Are you getting the large picture here? Nobody will gain here but the large cosmetic industries and regulators often lawyers are no cosmetic chemists, so they are being lied to, or not always told the truth.

It is also bad for small organic producers because of the heavy demands the new bill will put on them. Often they can not meet these and they may be put out of business as well. Therefore, at the end…. you consumer will be forced to look more into cosmetics from the large cosmetic companies.

This new bill, when it comes through, will be bad for all of us who favour natural ingredients and who wish to support small businesses. But when you love L’Oreal, Avon, Proctor & Gamble and more of these multinationals then support this bill and make them even more powerful.

This proposed bill is a shame to the American Dream and to you, the consumer who is maybe being mislead; maybe even lied to? But it is not too late.

Please sign the petition below…

The Get-together Dinner

I had been invited to a dinner on Monday night and was asked to be at Paul Penders office from 7.30pm onwards, when the guests were expected to be arriving. Upon reaching, I was amazed to see the brightly lit up office building. The lights made it look like a magnificent mansion from far away. See the photo of Paul Penders office taken during the day.

As I entered into the building, I was greeted by unrecognized faces but with firm handshakes and shy smiles. I proceeded upstairs and I saw Susan. I remember putting in a contribution from her into Paul Penders blog regarding the changes of her skin and life after using Paul Penders products. Besides, she is also a regular reader of the blog who leaves comments occasionally. Although it’s my first time meeting her, I felt a sense of familiarity with her. She looked beautiful in her midnight blue dress, which she paired with a seashell necklace. I was impressed with her fair and smooth skin that barely had any make-up on.

As the time passed, more guests began to turn up. I thought there would only be the Langkawi staff and I was taken aback to see more than 20 people showed up that night, who came from different places including Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Langkawi, Bangkok, Vietnam, and Netherlands. They were the distributors, the staff in the Langkawi headquarter, the website designers and the representatives from the manufacturing, packaging and shipping, and others who work indirectly with Paul Penders company.

I had also met Chan and Anne, a couple who is in charge of the manufacturing in Kuala Lumpur, Kaye and Lee Booi from the Green Meadow, and Mariek, the talented and experienced Executive Director of worldwide Marketing & Sales, and Nic and Krista.

After everyone had arrived, we made our way to the lawn in front of the office building for dinner. Although the buffet spread was simple, the food was wholesome and extravagant. Our meal was completed with fried noodle, fried rice, sambal chicken, mutton curry, stir-fried vegetables, salad, sambal prawns, fresh pegaga, hotdogs, nuggets and French fries, and pudding for dessert.

A variety of beverages were served to cater to different age groups and individual preferences, such as orange juice, soft drinks, mineral water, beer, wine and Whiskey.

After a hearty dinner, everyone started to mingle around and take photos to preserve the memories of that night. Some of the married ones brought their family along too and the kids were having fun playing tag and hide-and-seek together.

Although the party wasn’t a grand one, the chance to understand more about this company and the excitement of meeting new people made the night a memorable one. As the night progressed, the guests gradually left the party. We bid each other goodbye and wished goodnight. I went home covering sweat (due to the humid weather in Langkawi), but I was all wrapped up with friendly hugs and kisses. Thanks for the wonderful dinner and experience, everyone!