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We Want Beauty Without Poison! FDA Tests Lipsticks, Finds Lead in ALL

We Want Beauty Without Poison! FDA Tests Lipsticks, Finds Lead in ALL

A disturbing report surfaced last week that could have many women kissing off their lipstick.

The FDA tested a number of lipsticks from various brands and found lead in every one.

TAKE ACTION: Tell the FDA to ban lead from makeup!

Especially discouraging is the fact that the three lipsticks with the most lead are also some of the most popular — CoverGirl, Revlon and L’Oreal.

The FDA says the “small” level of lead found in the products is “not a threat,” and the Personal Care Products Council says the lead might be a trace contaminate from raw ingredients in the products. After all, lead is naturally found in air, water and soil.

But the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics — and I — aren’t buying it. Especially considering some lipsticks had lead levels 34 times higher than others.

Studies say the average woman consumes about four pounds of lipstick throughout her life from eating, drinking and licking her lips. And even though the lead levels found in these products might be “small,” many experts, like Florida’s Department of Health, say there’s “no safe level of lead in blood.” Lead, even in trace amounts, collects in the body over time and gets stored in your bones. For women, this lead is released into the blood at three key times: pregnancy, breastfeeding and after menopause.

As someone who sported — ahem, ROCKED — red lipstick every day when I was 15, this news is troubling.

And it should be, for all women. We shouldn’t have to risk our health with the contents of our makeup bags. Sure, during the Elizabethan era people powdered their hair and skin with lead, and during the Italian Renaissance women wore lead paint on their faces…but excuse me for thinking we’d progressed from that.

In related news, lead (along with arsenic and cadmium) was also discovered in some protein drinks. Can we ever escape these metals??

Your best bet for cosmetic safety, aside from throwing out your makeup altogether (which I for one am not strong enough to do), is to check the Cosmetics Safety Database. Make sure the potions that make you more beautiful aren’t also making you more toxic.

Right now, the FDA doesn’t regularly test for lead in finished cosmetics — only in the colors added to them. To help ensure the safety of your makeup, sign this petition asking the FDA to test finished cosmetics for lead. Ban all lead from these products, because NO lead is the only safe level.


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photo via Idhren, Flickr

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2:18AM PST on Dec 7, 2012

Best bet is to just STOP usine it! (make sure your chapstick doesn't have it in it or figure out how to make your own)!

10:03PM PST on Feb 16, 2012

hmmm... petition link goes to a webpage showing details but no means to sign the petition itself... odd.

10:57AM PST on Feb 16, 2012


11:48PM PST on Feb 15, 2012

Mirella, you may not find lead in Nivea but it's a petroleum product so not much better than lead. All conventional, drug store cosmetics are a hazard to say the least. Go to the EWG website and check out the safety of your products. Because you're worth it! How ironic.

12:04AM PST on Nov 11, 2010

Beauty Products

11:59PM PST on Nov 10, 2010

All natural and organic ingredients, Environmentally responsible, Never tested on animals, Made without harmful chemicals, Experience our passion for high quality bath and spa products
Beauty Products

10:20PM PDT on Aug 3, 2010

I have slowly been switching to natural cosmetics which are not animal tested, and some of them are vegan! Of course I still have a lot of old makeup left which I'm trying to use up, and none of that is natural...hopefully this petition works!

9:43PM PDT on Jul 25, 2010


11:58AM PDT on Jul 17, 2010

I don't wear lipstick, but thats not cool!

5:41PM PDT on Jun 27, 2010

I can't believe my eyes when 18 year-old teens use THAT much make up when they dont even need it... Some claim they do it just because they want to hide their skin-problems but maybe its all because of all that make up they're wearing... I'm very young myself, I'm 21 and I have never worn make up- except once on the prom, and it was so irritating that I couldn't even concentrate on all the fun we were having. I kinda felt my skin wasn't able to breathe. you may think I'm overreacting but I really couldn't stand it. It's so not healthy!

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