After years of pressure from environmental and consumer groups, Johnson & Johnson has pledged to remove a wide range of chemicals from its products, the New York Times reports. The company has committed to nix substances like formaldehyde by the end of 2015 from their adult products, which include brands like Neutrogena, Aveeno, and Clean & Clear. Johnson & Johnson is the first major consumer brand to take on such a promise, as it had already begun removing toxins from its baby products after consumer concern.
The push came after the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics ran a series of tests on a group of products and found substances such as formaldehyde and other carcinogens. These chemicals are not listed on the products' labels since they are technically by-products of the manufacturing process, not added ingredients. Johnson & Johnson is removing these substances from their formulas "even though as a scientist I will sit here and tell you these things are perfectly safe," said Susan Nettesheim, vice president for product stewardship and toxicology for the company's consumer brands. Johnson & Johnson has also promised to remove phthalates and parabens from its products. And since demand for eco-friendly and safe products is growing, the move could prove extremely successful for the company and its brands.