F.A.Q.

F.A.Q.

Does BeC test on Animals?

We don’t conduct animal testing on our products and don’t require suppliers to conduct animal testing on our behalf either! Safety and efficacy of all BeC products are guaranteed through tests exclusively done on voluntary healthy human beings. Each volunteer has been previously informed on characteristics and type of test to be done. BeC performs also chemical controls on raw materials before their use in formulations and secondly chemical and microbiological controls on the finished product before its sale on the market.

However the testing of raw materials performed by producers (our suppliers) should also be taken into consideration. The existing legislation forbids animal testing for cosmetic products or their ingredients, whereas alternative methods exist, and have been recognized by specific Committees as able to offer an equal safety and protection to the consumer. Such alternative methods must guarantee an evaluation of potential risk or toxicity parameters for the consumer. Before such methods were available, nevertheless, several kinds of raw materials had been animal tested by the producer to guarantee safety of use. Unfortunately still nowadays alternative methods haven’t replaced all animal testing. Therefore despite our will, some ingredients such as preservatives or dyes are still animal tested by producers in order to exclude their acute toxicity, toxicity due to constant use or a potential risk of carcinogenesis.

Do BeC products contain Nickel?

Nickel is considered the main factor for cutaneous allergies (allergic contact dermatitis). For this reason, BeC products are regularly tested to exclude its presence and to guarantee the maximum safety to all its consumers, particularly those that manifest allergies to this metal, which could be present as impurity or residue. BeC chemical analysis is done using sophisticated equipment (Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy) which guarantees that in all BeC products the concentration of Nickel is so low to be undetectable and in any case, below 1 mg/Kg (0,001 grams of Nickel per Kg of product) which represents a totally safe value even for those people who have previously manifested allergic reactions to this metal. In conclusion BeC products can be safely used by all consumers, including people allergic to Nickel!

The Capsules What are BeC dietary supplements capsules made of?

Capsules used in dietary, pharmaceutical or herbal products are typically made of gelatin, a substance that comes in various types, the most common and economic is of animal origin. Animal skins and bones are rich in collagen, a water-soluble protein from which gelatin is obtained through particular extraction processes. Gelatin is odourless and tasteless and it’s widely used in food products such as puddings, desserts, bakery or dairy preparations for its ability to gel, thicken, aerate or stabilize. Gelatin also finds its way into pharmaceutical and cosmetic formulations. However, BeC supplements capsules are made of hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose (HPMC), a vegetable-based substance derived by soft wood pine tree and cotton fibre that contain no components of animal origin. In comparison to gelatin capsules, vegetable ones are a bit duller but still transparent, they are more delicate and expensive and more expensive, but they guarantee a lower reactivity with the inside mixture and a better stability of water-sensitive active principles. Furthermore, studies have shown that the release of active principles from the capsule into the stomach is equal comparing vegetable gelatine (HPMC) to traditional animal gelatin. These vegetable capsules are approved by the Vegetarian Society and come with a kosher certificate, in other words they are suitable also for vegetarians and accepted by people that cannot eat food of animal origin for religious reasons.

How to choose the right SPF?

The sun protection factor (SPF) is a numeric value representing the relation between the minimum erymathous dose of sun radiation on a subject, which is measured both in presence or in absence of sunscreens. The higher is the number, the higher is the screen offered. COLIPA’s reference scale (at European level) indicates SPF ranging from 6 (lowest protection) to 50+ (highest protection). Since the reactions to sun exposure might vary from person to person, the measurement scale is divided into intervals conventionally (6-9.9; 10-14.9; 15-19.9 … 30-39.9, 40-49.9, 50-59.9 and > 60). Once defined the SPF of each product, the label will indicate the minimum interval the measure falls within. So, a product with SPF 6 might offer a protection from 6 to 9.9, a product with SPF50 might offer a protection from 50 to 59.9. If the protection is higher than 60, the label will carry 50+, normally. Basically, the SPF value measures the protection against UVB, while protection against UVA, if present, is indicated with a special sign. The choice of the proper SPF depends on many factors among which the sensitivity of every single person (type of skin), the intensity of the radiation (latitude, moment of the day, clouds, reflection factor of the environment, for example snow, sand), the result desired (gradual or rapid suntan). Furthermore, previous experiences of every person in addition to climatic and environmental conditions play a role in this choice.

The simple chart here aside, which is called nomogramm, might facilitate the selection of the protection factor which better meets different needs and conditions. For example, if a person with very high sensitivity to UV radiation is in condition of extreme exposure (for example in an equatorial area), he/she will need a SPF 50+, while in Mediterranean areas with moderate exposure SPF SPF 15 will be enough.

CHOOSE YOUR SUN PROTECTION FACTOR

The straight line crosses also the box with SPF 30, thereby indicating a larger choice for the subject who can decide which protection is more suitable for him/her: SPF 30 for a higher protection or SPF 15 for a more rapid tanning. It is always recommended to use a higher SPF during the first days exposure. On the contrary, on already tanned skins a lower protection than that indicated on the nomogramm is also enough. For example, the tanning oil Huile SolÈ® può fornire tutto ciò di cui la pelle ha bisogno per un’abbronzatura intensa e sana, senza i rischi del foto-invecchiamento.

Preparing skin inside and outside

To prepare skin to sun exposure and achieve the best result in total safety, it is recommended to nourish it also from inside with dedicated supplements which do not replace sun lotions but provide the organism with nutrition principles useful to achieve a good state of health, thereby protecting skin not only from outside but also from inside. Radical Stop® is a supplement based on vitamins and anti-oxidative vegetable extracts which reinforces skin defenses against photo-aging, at the same time protecting skin against erythema, dark spots and wrinkles. At the same time, it prepares skin for a homogeneous, intense and long-lasting coloring. Radical Stop® must be taken one month before holidays and during the whole period of sun exposure.

What are parabens and what do they do in a product?

Parabens are natural vegetable substances generally present in barley, strawberries, blackcurrants, peaches, carrots, onions, cocoa….. Parabens are preservatives with an antiseptic action that guarantees the preservation of the product in time. They can be found almost in every cosmetic available on the market (creams, make-up, toothpaste, shaving creams, soaps, sun-lotions and hair removal creams, etc.) and they are indicated in the labels of cosmetic products by the name of Methylparaben, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben. The same substances are also present in food (indicated as E 214, E 216, E 217, E 218, E 219) and in pharmaceutical products indicated in the label with their chemical name. Parabens are considered the safest preservatives and have been used for more than 50 years because of the absence of toxicity, carcinogenic or mutagenic effect. Paradoxically the large use and daily contact with parabens developed among people an increasing allergy or hypersensitivity to the substance. This represents the only ‘mole’ to their safety. For this reason, for the last 4 years BeC has been concentrating a considerable amount of research for the elimination of ALL preservatives from its formulations, even those as harmless and safe as parabens. At the present moment, BeC took parabens out of the formulation on IntE', Shampoo&Doccia, Bagno Doccia, doucessE', Lozione Ortodermica and Balsamo BeC. BeC products "without preservative" are constantly increasing in number (check product specifications for up-to-date information on preservatives).

Are cosmetics responsible for allergies?

According to the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and a study published by the North American Contact Dermatitis Group (NACDG), cosmetics are responsible for contact dermatitis only in 5.4% of the cases. Despite the low percentage, it’s absolutely incorrect to say that cosmetics aren’t blameless in the provocation of allergies: there are no substances that can be considered absolutely non-allergenic (allergenic = substance that provokes allergies) to all subjects. As a matter of fact, allergic reactions are individual and hardly predictable: it’s necessary to singularly test each cosmetic product on each customer to come to a full guarantee! Obviously this is not possible. However, it’s possible to safeguard the consumer and give a safe product by testing skin compatibility of each product on a significant sample of healthy human beings to avoid a dangerous or irritant product for the majority of consumers under normal condition of use. Moreover, to guarantee greater safety, tests can be performed in a drastic way, resorting to much higher conditions of exposure to the product than the ones consumer could ever reach. BeC uses the “Patch Test” to do so: the product is applied (along the back or on the forearm) and sealed by an aluminium capsule and glued on the skin with water-resistant patch. With this procedure the product is kept under forced contact with the skin for a long period of time – usually 48 hours – after that the patch is removed and both visual and instrumental evaluations are done to guarantee complete skin compatibility of the product. To BeC however, the Patch Test represents the last action performed in the production of a safe product; as a matter of fact safety starts during formulation and during selection of raw materials!

How did the cosmetic labelling change?

Since 1997, cosmetics on the European Union market must express on the label the list of ingredients in conformity with the INCI system (International Nomenclature Cosmetic Ingredient): consumers receive standard information on ingredients contained in cosmetics. From 11th March 2005, the VII amendment to the cosmetic Directive (Directive 2003/15/CE) has introduced the obligation to indicate in the label (where the list of ingredients is) the presence of one or more of the 26 substances recognized by the SCCP (Scientific Committee for cosmetic products of the EU). These synthetic or natural substances are present especially in perfumes but also in essential oils used for cosmetic products. Generally all substances used for cosmetic and perfume formulations (including the 26 substances) are considered to be safe according to tests which exclude the possibility of undesired reactions on the majority of consumers. However, since allergic reaction is an individual event, these new labelling dispositions intend to be a further help for allergic consumers towards a conscious choice.

Is it a balanced diet enough?

Diet is fundamental to keep a good state of health. A balanced diet has to contain principal nutrients (also called macro-nutrients) such as proteins, carbohydrates and fats (or lipids) as well as micro-nutrients such as vitamins and minerals required in smaller quantities although essential to the health of our organism. Nevertheless even a varied and well balanced diet may contain an inadequate quantity of micro-nutrients due to food preservation, exposure to external factors such as sunlight or air, overcooking, etc…that reduce their quantity in food. Average requirements of vitamins and minerals are set by official nutrition organizations of each country as well as international organizations, but generally the particular lifestyle of every single individual may require nutritional requirements different from the average: for instance stress, smoke or excessive use of alcohol may lead to a greater need of micro-nutrients from our organism. For this reason it may be essential to supplement the diet with vitamin and mineral-based products able to supplement possible nutritional deficiencies.

What are dry extracts?

Dry extracts are raw materials extracted from parts of the plant (called drugs) in which the active principles are present. Dry extracts represent the most effective and safe form that takes advantage of the properties of active principles. Drugs taken in this very way or as infusions do not represent a sufficient warranty of quality and safety for the consumer, since there’s no qualitative and quantitative mention of the real contents of active principles. For this reason BeC uses only standardized dry extracts for its formulas, a reported and guaranteed quantity of active principle (or a group of active principles with similar structure and actions); such extracts are indicated on the label of dietary supplements together with the reported standardization. In case there’s no market availability for standardized dry extracts, BeC uses extracts which indicate the proportion “extract/drug” (E/D). The proportion represents the quantity of plant (or part of plant) in kg used to obtain 1 kg of dry extract: for instance, an E/D proportion of 1/4 indicates that 4 kg of plant (DRUG) has been used to obtain 1 kg of Extract. Either ways (standardized extracts or E/D proportion) there’s the certainty of a raw material obtained with the same and reproducible method, in other words standardized; moreover the use of extracts is surely a warranty of: micro-biological and analytical controls on raw materials, lower variation of the formula and a way to get a much higher content of active ingredient than that of the plant.

What is PaO (Period after Opening)?

The VII amendment to the EU Directive 76/768/CEE introduced the obligation to indicate the so called PaO (Period after Opening) on the label of the product to improve the information customer need to receive. The following symbol is printed on both primary and secondary packaging especially on cosmetic products:

It means the product will keep unaltered its functional characteristics and safety for the time (expressed in months) specified. In the example above it’s a period of 36 months. This length of time is not referring to the actual date of expiration of the product but rather to the period of time that can pass after the opening of the product.

What is the Qualità Vegetariana® brand?

Qualità Vegetariana® is a brand created by a group of professionals with the aim to ensure a recognized quality to all those who chose vegetarianism as lifestyle, which is guaranteed by professionals with an experience of 30 years in the sector. The brand Qualità Vegetariana® is synonym of professionalism and commitment. Professionals and aware companies with a good work ethic, which identify themselves with the goals of the brand and which ensure all parameters of respect and safeguard of the animal world, can obtain this brand. In order to facilitate both visibility and identification of a Vegetarian or Vegan product by the end-user, we define as "Vegetarian" the product which excludes the use of products of animal origin and/or the intensive animal exploitation in every stage of its production. The brand's philosophy bans OGM products. To learn more, go to the website Qualità Vegetariana®

Why doesn't BeC have the brand LAV or ICEA, even if it does not test its products on animals?

The LAV and ICEA brands are two of the brands which protect animals in compliance with a private disciplinary code. The adhesion to such brands includes a commercial contract upon payment. BeC has always been very close with its history and its philosophy to the vegetarian world, therefore the company decided to support Qualità Vegetariana® and obtained the brand "QV" which protects, among other things, the complete respect of our Friends Animals. An ethic and quality choice in favor of our Customers.

What is the FSC® certification?

The FSC certification, Forest Stewardship Council is the main means of guarantee on the origin of the wood or paper. It is an international system of certification which guarantees that the raw material used to realize a wooden or paper product comes from woods managed in a responsible way, where strict environmental, social and economical standards are respected.

The ingredient indicated as PELARGONIUM GRAVEOLENS or GERANIUM OIL is indicated as doping substance since 2013 in the professional sports system. Is this ingredient present also in BeC's products?

Actually, the guilty substance is methylhexanamine (MHA), a SYNTHETIC substance with an action similar to ices which can increase sports performances. Since this substance can be obtained from the geranium oil, recently some producers of supplements indicated it as “Pelargonium oil” or “Geranium oil” or “Pelargonium graveolens” on labels, thereby creating confusion in the consumer. In fact, this substance is NOT contained in the natural oil of geranium and is of synthetic origin. See the Learn more.

Concerning BeC's products, we can reassure our sports customers. BeC uses 100% natural essential oil of Geranium Bourbon only (Pelargonium capitatum), the finest variety of geranium. Therefore, BeC's products do not contain MHA and undergo frequent and strict controls to ensure naturalness, purity and safety of our natural ingredients.