Powerful Parents Get Toxins Removed From Popular Baby Shampoo

Johnson's Baby shampooParents who take the time to complain when a company's products for kids doesn't meet their own high standards know they're fighting a mega battle. But here's a bit of encouragement for them: Johnson & Johnson, a mega brand in the baby industry, is heeding parents' concerns about formaldehyde in its popular shampoo. They're retooling the whole line to can the carcinogen. Score one for the squeaky wheels!

Based on sheer company size alone, this is big news. Go to a baby shower, and it's a pretty safe bet that there will be at least one Johnson's product dug out of a gift bag. If executives there are willing to listen to parents, who else will?


Congress? The president? The UN?

OK, so let's not get ahead of ourselves. Fighting for our kids' safety and security is one of those jobs easily likened to eating an elephant. And it really has to be managed one bite at a time. Taking on too much is how you become that frazzled mom at the grocery store wearing one Ugg and one Croc, with a Cheerio in her hair and spit-up on her left shoulder.

She's one extreme. But at least she's trying. She's doing something more worthwhile than the other extreme: parents who throw up their hands and tell me, "Well, there's nothing I can do about [insert disturbing child health concern here]." They're the parents who can use this baby shampoo change as a wake-up call.

Just last week, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics lambasted the company for the presence of a cancer-causing agent in baby shampoo. It's the same stuff, by the way, that's in that freaky Brazilian blowout. This week, we have news from the folks at J&J that help is on the way. Of course, there was a lot of behind the scenes before that; parents writing letters, health practitioners jumping on board. But the point is: it worked. They listened. They changed.

Excuse me for sounding like a total cornball here, we are our children's voices. We can make a difference in their lives. All it takes sometimes is using that 10 minutes of free time you get in the day (ha, who am I kidding, 5 minutes!) to dash off an email or sign an online petition.

At the end of the day, when a company says, "Hey, we heard you, and we're changing this for millions of kids," it totally makes up for that 5 minutes of free time lost. I know I'm feeling good today.

How about you? Have you pushed a company to change its practices for the sake of your kids? Has it worked?


Image via Johnson's Baby

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