• happi happi.com February 2015 44
WITH NEARLY YEAR AT HER POST AS CHIEF SCIENTIST AT THE PERSONAL CARE PRODUCTS COUNCIL,
BETH LANGE SEES EDUCATION AS AN ESSENTIAL WAY TO WIN OVER CONSUMERS, REGULATORS AND NGOS.
WHEN CAN speaking in front of 30,000 people be consid- ered a warm-up act? When you’re the new chief sci- entific officer for the Personal Care Products Council!
That’s the situation that Beth Lange found herself in after
joining the Council on July 1, after serving for more than five
years as chief scientific officer at Mary Kay Inc. In her former
role, Lange was often called upon to translate scientific jargon
into something that was meaningful for Mary Kay’s millions of
independent representatives—thousands of whom converged
in Dallas each year for Mary Kay’s Convention. And that educational role is something Lange is building on at the Council.
“We have to translate technical issues in ways that are meaningful to consumers, NGOs and retailers,” explained Lange.“I am
a scientist, but you need other approaches in order to communicate (with stakeholders).”
An extensive scientific background actually makes it easier to
translate hard science into something a bit softer for the non-sci-entist. Prior to her career at Mary Kay, Lange held senior scientific
positions at Schering-Plough, Kimberly Clark and Unilever. She
earned a PhD in radiation biology from the University of Iowa,
College of Medicine and a BS in nuclear medicine from Oakland
The Ways of Washington
Before joining the Council, Lange was no stranger to the work
being done in Washington DC. She’s been in the beauty industry
for nearly 20 years and has served the Personal Care Products
Council in a number of ways, such as sitting on numerous task
forces, working as vice chairman or chairman of various committees both on the national and international levels.
“I got a lot of exposure to the Council and I loved the advocacy end of things, as well as the opportunity to help shape policy
and advice and bring an industry perspective,” she explained.
Her background has made representatives from member
companies very comfortable about reaching out.
“I know the pain of dealing with negative media or replacing preservatives,” she told Happi. “I’m a good representative for
In fact, it is the controversy surrounding parabens that has
been one of the biggest challenges since Lange joined The
“They have a long, safe history of use, they are easy to use and
they are inexpensive. But a lot of companies shy away from them
because of consumer pressure—not science,” she noted.“And the
alternatives may not be as robust or may even be unpleasant.
Tom Branna • Editorial Director
PCPC’s Beth Lange