(Updated 22 Oct 2015 10:30pm) When caught in the act, Vani Hari occasionally quietly pulls a product from her lineup without explanation. She appears to have done that with the Tarte Blush described in this article. Below is a screen snapshot of her shopping page, taken today, with a big red “X” marking the spot where the Tarte Blush was removed.
Compare it to the shopping page snapshot in the article, below, and ask yourself what happened to Food Babe’s new policy on transparency? Where’s her retraction? She’s been selling this product for years… 😦 (click photo to enlarge)
Begin original article:
We’ve already once caught Vani Hari (the Food Babe) falsely claiming that vitamin A (retinyl palmitate) causes cancer while at the same time earning a sales commission on a skin care product that contains vitamin A.1
Would she make the same mistake twice?
Yes. And this one is mind boggling.
First, let’s refresh our memories on Hari’s vitamin A claims. Here’s a telling Facebook post:2
And from her web site, we have this:3
With that out of the way, it’ time to go shopping at Food Babe’s online store.
Oh, that Tarte Blush looks nice!4
You can see from the encrypted Amazon.com affiliate link that she earns a sales commission if you buy this item.
But… I wonder what’s in the blush?
The answer isn’t on Amazon.com. Tarte doesn’t list the ingredients there.5 But some digging on the company web site eventually provided an answer:
My apologies, but Tarte goes at this a little awkwardly. They’re so proud of their ingredients that they list them first. You must choose an ingredient from a list to see all the products that contain it. In other words, you can’t just click a product to see what it’s made of. You must scan a web page for “vitamin A”, then click “vitamin A” to learn where Tarte uses it. Geez!
Anyway, sure enough, Tarte has products that contain vitamin A. Unlike Food Babe, they LOVE this ingredient…6
… but how about the specific product recommended by Food Babe–the Tarte Blush?
One more mouse click gives us a list of the company’s cosmetics that contain vitamin A–the ingredient that Vani Hari falsely claims causes cancer. And sure enough:7
Only $26 for a product that Food Babe repeatedly says will give you cancer.
What percentage of that $26 goes to Vani Hari when you purchase via her web site?
Vani Hari falsely says that retinyl palmitate (vitamin A) will give you cancer if you apply it to your skin and go out in the sun.2,3 But she’s earning a sales commission on a cosmetic that contains vitamin A.
So Hari is hypocritical. If you buy this blush from her web page and wear it in the sun, she, by her own standards, is making you cancer-prone.
But are you really?
In a previous article on Food Babe’s vitamin A hypocrisy, I pointed what experts say about the safety of vitamin A.1 A 2010 study published by the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology concluded that there was absolutely no evidence that retinyl palmitate (vitamin A) was implicated in cancer.8
Experts say there’s no proof whatsoever that Tarte Cosmetics Blush–or any other product containing retinyl palmitate–will give you cancer. Buy from Tarte with wild abandon, and feel safe in doing so.
But please don’t buy via affiliate links on Food Babe’s web page.
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The Food Babe Ban List
Amazon.com and Tarte product, and Food Babe screen snapshots are used in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.
Please note: To prevent increasing search engine exposure for objectionable web sites, I use the DoNotLink service to obfuscate their URLs. I promise you are not being redirected to porn.
(1) Food Babe Selling “Dangerous” Items: Kiss My Face Moisture Shave
(2) Food Babe Facebook Post on Vitamin A
(3) Food Babe web site vitamin A
(4) Food Babe Online Shop: “For Your Beauty” (Tarte Blush)
(5) Tarte Blush on Amazon.com
(6) Tarte Cosmetics: Benefits of Vitamin A
(7) Tarte Cosmetics: Products Containing Vitamin A
(8) Safety of retinyl palmitate in sunscreens: A critical analysis