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The Good Housekeeping Seal is an endorsement by Good Housekeeping magazine of a given product. Good Housekeeping has been a popular magazine since 1909, catering to both men and women interested in home management. Good Housekeeping magazine prints helpful tips and details on a variety of issues, from recipes to table settings to Christmas decoration ideas to parenting tips or articles on how to keep a marriage strong. In addition to the helpful tips printed on maintaining your home, Good Housekeeping also endorses or provides its seal of approval to certain products that meet its criteria.
The Good Housekeeping Seal is awarded by the Good Housekeeping Research Institute (GHRI), which has been testing products since 1909. The research institute tests a wide variety of products to see if they actually do what they are advertised to do and whether the products are valuable and useful for the consumer. The seal is awarded to thousands of products: Aveeno® Soothing Bath Treatment, Nature's Source® All Purpose Bath Cleaner, and Tide Coldwater® Laundry Detergent are just a few examples of products that have a Good Housekeeping Seal as of 2010.
When a company or product applies for a Good Housekeeping Seal, the company essentially provides a sample of its product to the Good Housekeeping Research Institute, which then puts the product through a rigorous series of tests to determine if the product performs appropriately and as expected. If the product passes the tests conducted by the GHRI, then Good Housekeeping adds it to the list of products with its seal and the company itself can display the seal prominently on the product and in any advertising campaigns for the product.
The seal provides helpful advice for consumers who are comparison shopping or who are interested in trying a new product. Like Consumer Reports® magazine and other unbiased sources, consumers can use the seal provided by Good Housekeeping as a benchmark of quality. This can influence purchasing decisions and, as such, marketers and manufacturers generally want their products to receive the seal of approval from Good Housekeeping.
In addition to the standard seal of approval, Good Housekeeping also added a Green Good Housekeeping Seal in 2009. This seal is awarded to those products that already have the original seal and have met the quality control standards of the GHRI to obtain that original approval. To earn the Green seal of approval, the product also must demonstrate that it is healthy and without risk to the environment.