Beauty Product Labels & Their Meanings

Beauty Product Labels & Their Meaning

Do you notice the little symbol on most beauty products like the one above, indicating the product’s shelf life? I don’t know why I hadn’t noticed that before, not until a friend asked if I knew what they meant, but taking out a random item from my dresser, yup, there it was.  In case you’re not sure about certain beauty product labels’ meanings, here are some of them decoded.

Beauty Product Labels & Their MeaningsThe Open Jar Symbol – basically this indicates the length of time you can safely use the item from the day you first open it. While not each and every product has this, most do. This symbol may be quite small and may be located on the bottom or side of the product. It may also be found not on the item itself but on the box it comes in, so before throwing out boxes, check them for the open jar symbol and take note.

Fragrance-free and Unscented –  These two labels can often be found on the bottles and tubes of skin care products. They might mean the same thing but I do remember coming across a blog that pointed out that there may be a difference between the two. From what I’ve read, fragrance-free can mean that the product is generally free of fragrance or perfume additives, while unscented may still contain fragrance, added to mask the ingredients’ natural odors. If you want to avoid a product with any sort of fragrance, I highly recommend checking the ingredients list.

+/- sign at the end of the ingredients list – this means ‘may contain’. Components listed after the +/- sign are often colorants, for example in cosmetics like lipsticks which may have a big range of shades, the colorants used for all the shades are listed together in the ‘may contain’ list.

Beauty Product Labels & Their MeaningsThe ‘e’ symbol – this indicates the net amount contained in the product, and the amount printed is correct and passed the European Union standards.

Non-comedogenic – in case you’re not familiar with the meaning of this term, it indicates that the product does not block pores. I see this label on a lot of skin care items, but I don’t find it to be a guarantee that it really won’t block my pores. It’d still be better to test it carefully and observe your skin for any reactions.

Beauty Product Labels & Their MeaningsOrganic and Natural – organic should mean that the ingredients do not contain or were produced without the use of any genetic engineering, toxic pesticides or fertilizers, and artificial preservatives. A product made in the USA have to be certified organic by the USDA (United Stated Department of Agriculture) before it can be labelled as such. Natural products contain ingredients from botanical sources, but these may or may not also contain synthetic materials. With local products, I find that these two labels can be loosely used on beauty product labels. I don’t think there’s any strict certification applied here, so personally, I check the ingredients list and rely more on the brand and what I know about it.

I hope these helped broaden your knowledge on beauty product labels and their meanings, and if you know more or would like to clarify other terms or symbol, please do so in the comments, or email me. :-)

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3

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8 Responses to Beauty Product Labels & Their Meanings

  1. debbie says:

    yeah i believe all of us should have a good understanding on the producst that we buy and use. :)

  2. ife says:

    hey.. nice post.. never knew the jar symbol..

  3. Deepshikha says:

    Very informative article..Thanks :)

  4. Ahh thank you for this post! I never knew what the little ‘e’ mean, and I certainly didn’t know there was a difference between unscented and fragrance free!

    • Ida says:

      You’re welcome! I didn’t knew what the ‘e’ meant before I wrote this post either, and I though what I read about the difference between unscented and fragrance free was worth sharing. :)

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