Non-Toxic vs. Hypoallergenic Skincare Products

Non-Toxic vs. Hypoallergenic Skincare Products

Written by:

Julia Padilla - Carr

Julia had the vision of creating a clinical skin care studio with the traditional spa atmosphere for many years. Julia is a Licensed Aesthetician, Licensed Electrologist, and Certified Laser Hair Removal Technician in the State of Florida.

Skincare manufacturers and their marketing teams like to throw a lot of terminology around to describe their products. As consumers, you might be tempted to gloss over these terms and assume they’re interchangeable.

But as skincare professionals, we want our clients to be educated and informed about the things they’re putting on their skin.

Two of the biggest skincare buzzwords are “non-toxic” and “hypoallergenic.” So what do they really mean, and how are they different?

Non-Toxic Skincare Products

On a skincare label or marketing campaign, “non-toxic” ostensibly means that the products’ ingredients do not include substances that have been linked to toxic responses in humans. That is, ingredients that science has already determined could cause organ damage, birth defects, neurological effects, or cancer.

Examples of substances considered toxic—and which have in the past been used in skincare and cosmetics—are formaldehyde, lead acetate, and asbestos.

Any product labeled “non-toxic” should not include those substances.

That being said, the FDA does not regulate the use of the term “non-toxic.” It would be nice to trust that companies that label their products “non-toxic” aren’t including harmful ingredients. But consumers should always check the ingredients list just in case.

Hypoallergenic Skincare Products

Similarly, the FDA does not regulate the use of the word “hypoallergenic”—a term that’