The company says that the European certification, which is now internationally recognized, should go a long way in helping it expand outside of the domestic market and into the major international market. Likewise, it also addresses the fact that in the US there is still a big gap as far as this type of certification goes, forcing companies such as Alima to look overseas to get certified. It is expected that the certification will be particularly worthwhile for the company's marketing aims in Europe, where this particular type of seal is already well recognized as a mark of natural cosmetic quality. Alima says that it is the second American company to earn the seal, adding that it will help to convey that its products are 'pure, natural, cruelty-free and environmentally friendly'. Based in Mannheim, BDIH has forged a name for itself as a leading global certifier of natural cosmetics, with its seal representing high standards in natural-based personal care ingredients that are increasingly recognized on a global basis. To this end BDIH advocates pure, safe natural ingredients, as well as assuring the packaging for such products respects the environment by using largely sustainable and eco-friendly materials. Likewise, the certification also fills a gap that government authorities in the US have all but ignored, says Alima Cosmetics founder, Kate O'Brien. "In the U.S., neither the Food and Drug Administration nor the beauty industry has agreed upon a definition for the term 'natural,' so companies can use it to mean anything - or nothing," she said. "For this reason, it made sense for us to seek European certification of Alima products. The BDIH seal is an easy way for consumers to know that the products they're using are safe and meet a strict set of natural ingredient guidelines." The move follows a recently launched campaign by natural personal care producer Burt's Bees to tackle widespread confusion over what is and what is not a natural personal care product. The company says it wants to establish 'a definition for natural personal care products by working with both competitors and the industry as a whole in an effort to make things easier for the consumer and to clear up confusion.' The campaign aims to establish a definition that holds 'natural to the highest possible standards'. Burt's Bees says that its actions have been supported by a recent consumer study, conducted by TSC, that shows just how confused consumers are regarding natural personal care products and the assumed standards for the sector. The company is targeting the fact that in the United States there is currently no official regulation for natural or organic personal care products, leaving consumers vulnerable and the industry wide open to dubious claims.