Good Guide; A love letter


Dear Good Guide,

Thank you for existing. You’re the main consumer transparency tool I share with fellow innocent members of the public. Your app is my favorite tool to use as a consumer, because of your independent, third-party evaluations of ingredients and handy, UPC-code scanning abilities. I can’t imagine shopping without your information on a product’s ingredient healthiness, certifications and ecolabels, and lists of possible alternatives in the same product category.

Roses are red,
toxic chemicals are cruel,
transparency gives me the power
to choose products that rule.

Since you attempt to rate the top 80% of sales in a category and products that are marketed as “healthy”, I can find most of the products I see on the shelves in your database.

For each product, from personal care to household chemical and food products, you break down the ingredient list and let me know if there are any toxic or potentially toxic chemicals of high, medium, or low concern, or if a chemical being used has a “safe use exception”. I love that you tell me if an ingredient has been banned or regulated as a chemical of concern in Canada, the EU, and other countries with more stringent regulations than the US. Even more, I love that you tell me what these chemicals of concern are suspected of, whether its causing cancer or organ toxicity.

Since I started using your app, I’ve been shocked by how many chemicals that are banned overseas are allowed in our shampoo and cosmetics in the US!

My only quip is that you used to provide a rating on the social goodness of the company and environmental goodness of the product and company’s sustainability practices, but now you are just focusing on healthiness. Please bring this triple bottom line evaluation back in the near future!

The transparency you provide helps consumers like me suss out greenwashing and healthwashing (yes, I made that term up). It puts the power back in our hands to vote with our dollar to protect our health and the environment (because toxic chemicals to us are likely toxic to the birds, bees and trees, too).

Which is why, dear GoodGuide, you are my transparency Valentine this year.

Keep being awesome,

XO Alex

Consumers,  Good Guide and their app is free, it’s powerful, I have not in any way been paid to write this love letter to Good Guide (but I do love them), and I think you should try this amazing tool out the next time you go shopping!


Published by Alex Setmajer

Sustainability professional driven to help the world continually become a more sustainable place.

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