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Pucker: Lipstick Safety and High Lead Levels

why do lipsticks contain lead (when lead isn't listed as an ingredient), and what does that mean to women's health? consumer safety groups ask "why isn't the Food and drug administration doing something about it?"

There's too much lead in lipsticks whose labels don't list it as an ingredient, and the FDA is not doing its job when it allows such potentially dangerous product toxicity without oversight.

The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics made the accusation last week, based on independent lab tests it commissioned.

According to the group, 20 of the 33 brand-name lipsticks it analyzed had some levels of lead. Those levels ranged from 0.03 part per million to 0.65 part per million, and some experts say prolonged exposure could lead to significant health risks.

Lipstick products, like candy, are directly ingested into the body and remain on the skin for hours at a time. Nevertheless, the FDA has not set a limit for lead in lipstick.

Lipstick and other cosmetics are policed by the manufacturers themselves. Some may argue that this is putting the fox in charge of the hen house - others say it's the best guarantee of safety standards that are developed rapidly and adopted quickly.


...
33 brand-name lipsticks tested - None of them
listed lead
as an ingredient...

High levels of lead are of particular concern to pregnant women, because high doses of lead can have significant impacts on the early brain development of babies and toddlers.

Lead has been linked to learning and behavioral problems in children, such as reduced IQ, poorer school performance and aggression.

More than half of 33 brand-name lipsticks tested -- 61 percent -- contained detectable levels of lead, with levels ranging from 0.03 to 0.65 parts per million (ppm). None of these lipsticks listed lead as an ingredient, the group said.

Among the top brands testing positive for lead were:
• L'Oreal Colour Riche "True Red" - 0.65 ppm
• L'Oreal Colour Riche "Classic Wine" - 0.58 ppm
• Cover Girl Incredifull Lipcolor "Maximum Red" - 0.56 ppm
• Dior Addict "Positive Red" - 0.21 ppm

Digg!

Seeking cosmetic and beauty product safety information? Visit safecosmetics.org, the official site of the Environmental working group's skin deep cosmetics safety program.

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