The Girlcott is designed to drive demand for a healthier cosmetics and personal care industry through Awareness, Action, Alternatives and Advocacy.

But how did we come up with this name and what does it mean?

If you Google the word, “girlcott,” you may land on a reference to an effort organized in 2005 by a group of high school girls in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania to protest the sexist slogans printed on t-shirts sold by retailer, Abercrombie & Fitch.

These girls launched an email campaign to encourage other teens NOT to shop at Abercrombie & Fitch, which in turn inspired significant media coverage. The negative press and consumer backlash prompted the brand to remove several of the offending t-shirts and issue an apology to the girls.

They coined the term, girlcott, and we applaud these young women for stepping up, speaking out and taking an important stand about an issue they were passionate to embrace.

"However, the real origin for our movement comes from author, Stacy Malkan, whose superbly researched, eye-opening book, Not Just a Pretty Face: The Ugly Side of the Beauty Industry, references the word girlcott by Dr.Devra Davis--a scientific leader in efforts to promote safer and healthier products.

During an interview with renowned cancer researcher and author, Dr. Devra Davis, Malkan passes along Davis’ advice, “the simpler the better,” when it comes to choosing safer personal care products. Their dialogue continues to reflect their mutual recommendations about how to gradually replace the many items on our shelves that have the potential to cause us harm.

“I don’t think of it as a boycott – exactly - more like a ‘girlcott.’ Boycotts mean saying no. Girlcotts mean yes,” Dr. Davis explained. “Women are the main purchasers of products and take responsibility for what goes into the home. We can organize to change market forces by saying we don’t want cancer-causing products, and we do want safer products. When enough women get together, we can make things happen.”

And Malkan echoes, “It’s fun to think about spending my money on the kind of world I want to create. Yes to women finding and celebrating true beauty in ourselves and in each other. No to an organic experience created in a petrochemical factory. No, I don’t want to invest in a vision of the future that involves selling skin whitening cream to millions of villages in China. Yes to products that are safe for the fish, the frogs and all species of the planet. Yes to cosmetics that are 100% free of toxic chemicals linked to birth defects, cancer and learning disabilities. Yes to gathering together in communities and building political power to change the rules so that any of us can go into any store at any time, and buy any personal care products without having to worry about whether they are safe for our families.”

By taking a u-turn away from just saying no in the form of a traditional boycott, we are attempting to shift the paradigm to a positive direction of consumer influence. Similar momentum is building in the organic food industry where customers are allocating ever more precious dollars to groceries that avoid harmful ingredients such as pesticides, additives and genetically modified ingredients.

We hope to offer an example of how to empower women and their families to embrace healthier alternatives as well as advocate for new standards to shape industries that profoundly affect all of us.

The Girlcott is a consumer model for the future.

We are providing a strong message to the marketplace. We are guiding our government to protect us. And we are moving forward with solutions to problems of monumental importance to today’s society.

Everyone has a voice. Everyone has a choice. Everyone is invited to support The Girlcott!