100% Pures Foundation Product Group
Brand Reviews

100% Pure | Brand Info and Ingredient Writeup

100% Pure Brand Review

Interested in 100% Pure? Ever wondered about their ingredients and how they make things work? Well, here are the cliff notes and a little bit about the company’s background.

100% Pure Table of Contents

100% Pure Quick Facts | Summary of commitments to being natural, safe, ethical and eco-friendly

Company Background | How the company started

100% Pure’s Ingredients | Overview of 100% Pure’s formulation tendencies

100% Pure’s Favorite Ingredients are Extracts and Hydrosols | What extracts and hydrosols are and if they are beneficial

100% Pure Avoids Common Irritants and Works with All-Naturals | The brand’s commitment to be as natural as possible

Questions about their Formulation and Final Thoughts | More details needed as to the components in their extracts and some formulas but kudos to them for avoiding ingredients in their “No” list.

Best of 100% Pure | Products and Reviews

100% Pure Quick Facts

Ingredients | 54 banned items on their “No List” including SLS, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Parabens, Pthalates, Synthetic colors or fragrances, chemical sunscreens, PEGs, Petroleum & its derivatives among others.

Eco-friendly | 100% solar powered headquarters, recycled/recyclable packaging, soy ink, biodegradable packing material without BPA or pthalates

Ethical | Supports several organizations, many for animals such as the Humane Society, PETA, Leaping Bunny, etc. Cruelty Free

EWG | 1-6

The Good Guide | 7 for 253 products

Company Background

100% Pure Cofounder Susie Wang putting on some of 100% Pure's makeup.
100% Pure Cofounder Susie Wang started 100% Pure after an eye cream ingredient warped her lab table.

When a lab table eroded because an eye cream ingredient spilled, cosmetics formulator Susie Wang decided that there had to be a way to incorporate gentler ingredients to use on your skin.

She quit her job as a cosmetics formulator consultant for 3 large cosmetics brands and founded 100% Pure with her brother James Wang and then-boyfriend Ric Kostick.

She had a lot of knowledge to draw on.

As an undergraduate in Berkeley she had discovered a way to stabilize natural ingredients from oxidation and filed a patent for it.

Susie found a way to prevent oxidation and filed a patent for it as a undergraduate in Berkeley. Laboratory measuring equipment.
Susie found a way to prevent oxidation and filed a patent for it as a undergraduate in Berkeley.

Big cosmetics brands soon came knocking, and she spent the next 5 years working on formulations for them.

All of this came in handy when 100% Pure was founded in 2005.

She became their chief formulator and was also involved in quality control. She does their due diligence for their main suppliers and goes to inspects their manufacturing process. The company also requires updated organic and non-GMO certification every year.

100% Pure also tests individual ingredients and has occasionally asked for soil samples from their farmers.

To make sure that the products formulated are safe and effective, the company also goes through 9 steps.

100 Pure has a 9 step testing process to ensure that a product is up to standard. It even tests packaging. Here, a picture of 6 different packaging types in black are shown.
100 Pure has a 9 step testing process to ensure that a product is up to standard. It even tests packaging.

First, they test the ingredients to ensure no pesticides or chemicals were used on the raw material. They then check if the ingredients work well together and whether it performs as expected.

Two sensitivity tests, then two packaging tests and finally two stability tests are done.

While this is a lot of work, it does reassure that the company does its best to ensure high quality.

The company grew gradually but it was when they were featured in QVC and won the 2015 Beauty Pitch Competition that things started to take off.

These days, they have 200 employees and 12 retail locations and continue to grow.

100 Pure has expanded and now has 12 stores and 200 employees.
100 Pure has expanded and now has 12 stores and 200 employees.

100% Pure’s Ingredients

Whenever I review a product, I look at each ingredient through the EWG database to see what their functions and safety rating is.

It gives me a pretty good insight into what a company believes and what they really put into their cosmetics. It also helps me understand a lot about formulations – what works and what doesn’t

For 100% Pure, I looked at 8 products and listed down all their ingredients.

And this is what the ingredients list tells me about them:

  • They rely a lot of botanical extracts.
  • They like their hydrosols.
  • They abstain from a lot of common irritants that they promised to and published on their “No” List.
  • This is a natural brand. Only a few organic ingredients are present.
  • There are a couple of small mysteries that leave me stumped.
  • I think that they do try to deliver the best that a natural brand can.

100% Favorite Ingredients are Extracts and Hydrosols

100 Pure uses hydrosols in a lot of their products. Here is a picture of the hydrosol process, which is a by product of essential oil distillation.
100 Pure uses hydrosols in a lot of their products, which is a by product of essential oil distillation.

There are a lot of extracts and hydrosols in 100% Pure.

100% Pure defines a hydrosol as a byproduct of essential oil creation. Through distillation, an herb is transferred to oil or water.

The water is the hydrosol and it’s kind of like the tea that you and I drink at home.

Meanwhile, an extract is:

An extract is a substance made by extracting a part of a raw material, often by using a solvent such as ethanol or water.

Wikipedia

Essentially, it’s any part of the plant that is dissolved in any carrier. The most popular are water and alcohol, but it really could be anything. In addition, I understand that many extracts have added preservatives.

Botanical extracts are often used. A picture of dried Rose leaves.
Botanical extracts are often used.

When you look at 100% Pure’s ingredients, extracts and hydrosols are often mentioned.

But are they effective?

If concentrated essential oils in lotions have a hard time affecting your skin, the more diluted hydrosols and extracts would have an even harder time.

There aren’t many scientific studies on hydrosols. There are some for extracts, but they don’t specify the formulation.

So, there are marketing reasons behind some of these things. In addition, there seem to be other ingredients in the extracts beyond just the pure plant. I’d love to know the details.

100% Pure Avoids Common Irritants and Works with All-Natural Ingredients

100% Pure has a "No List" where they ban certain ingredients. A picture of a notebook with writing and a pen.
100% Pure has a “No List” where they ban certain ingredients.

If Beauty Counter has their Never list, 100% Pure has their No List.

The No List lists 54 ingredients or ingredient families that have very notorious public profiles as being bad.

Are they really bad?

It’s complicated.

No-one can argue that modern life has pollutants and chemicals. In addition, certain diseases have much earlier onset. Still, proof is inconclusive.

As a consumer and mother, I’m happier avoiding them. However, I also want performance and great skin feel and fragrance. And I’d prefer not to have them spoil on my countertop.

Modern life with its pollution and chemicals has contributed to earlier onset of diseases. Smoke stacks.
Modern life with its pollution and chemicals has contributed to earlier onset of diseases.

So there are tradeoffs.

The No List is a pretty good starting place for banning items that may be linked to cancer and that may be incite contact dermatitis. However, it might be pushing us to alternatives that may be worse than the original (You remember the BPA scare? Well, the alternative turns out to be worse.)

You have to hand it to these guys.

By existing, they allow us to have options. They put pressure on traditional companies to look for alternatives.

If you are particularly sensitive to some common cosmetic ingredients this is helpful.

Remember though that natural doesn’t necessarily mean irritant free. Naturals can be irritating to be skin as well.

Questions about their Formulation and Final Thoughts

100 PURE Seafoam Lavender Cleanser foam on a beach.
I’d love to know a little bit more about how some of these product work.

I’d love to know what the preservatives in the Lavender Seafoam Facial Cleanser are. Currently none are listed and there should be some even if it was a hot process soap.

I also have the same question around the mascara. I suspect the preservatives are in the extracts, but I would like to know.

I would like some more visibility into this, but I do think that 100% Pure does try to present a more natural option than most.

There’s no doubt that it avoids many chemicals of concern among consumers. Additionally, their testing and scientific background is reassuring.

I’d buy and try – there is definitely something of value to get from the brand with the Lip Glazes and Coconut Body Scrub getting my vote.

They aren’t the most popular – the Fruit Pigmented Ultra Lengthening Mascara and the Organic Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream are – but then I always never paid attention to what was the most popular.

Best of 100% Pure | Products and Reviews

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