Do you know what all the ingredients mean on the labels of your makeup?
I’m willing to guess that if you’re like most people, you have no idea, all that matters is that it makes you look good.
Here’s a scary fact for you… the US government requires no mandatory testing for cosmetic products. This means they can essentially put almost anything in your lipstick, lip gloss, and deodorant.
Here’s the deal, toxic metals have been discovered in makeup products such as lipstick.
And don’t get it twisted, you don’t have to swallow this stuff in order for it to hurt you. Your skin absorbs it into the bloodstream. So image that you are reapplying toxic chemicals to your face several times a day and dosing your blood with heavy metals and contaminants on the regular.
According to a recent piece by The New York Times, “Millions of women and girls apply lipstick every day. And not just once: some style-conscious users touch up their color more than 20 times a day.”
A recent study also found that “a wide range of brands contain as many as eight other metals, from cadmium to aluminum.” Those will never appear on a label because they are contaminants of other ingredients.
Besides endocrine disruptors like propylparaben, other harmful substances in a typical department store and drugstore lipsticks are as tocopheryl acetate and retinyl acetate, as well as titanium dioxide, which usually exists in nanoparticle form.
Nanoparticles have been shown to cross the cell barrier and drive into organs, including the brain in humans, where they can cause long-term oxidative damage.
There is no way of knowing what size particles are in your product unless the manufacturer tells you.
So, what’s the solution? Organic lipstick with as few harmful chemicals as possible.
Harmful Chemicals that Cause Carcinogenic Lipstick
The Environmental Defense group conducted a study where it tested 49 makeup items for their level of toxic metals. The tested items included:
- Five foundations
- Eight lipsticks or glosses
- Four powders
- Five blushes or bronzers
- 14 eyeshadows
- Seven mascaras
- Two eyeliners
- Four concealers
The research has shown dangerous levels of contamination in heavy metal in almost every product. Of all the products tested, about 96% had lead-based ingredients, 90% had beryllium based ingredients, and 61% had thallium based ingredients. The research also found that 51% of the items had cadmium and 20% had contained arsenic.
Harmful Metals Cause Carcinogenic Lipstick
In average, out of the 8 metals tested, most of the products included four, and every single product tested contained at least two of the four metals that pose the highest health risks. These metals are lead, cadmium, mercury, and arsenic. These metals are highly toxic and pose a significant health threat.
It is worth noting that an FDA report from a couple of years ago, reported 400 different brand models of lipstick that contained some amounts of lead that could be traced. The report concluded that the levels of these metals were too small to pose a health and safety threat, but Dr. Mark Mitchell, from the National Medical Association, says otherwise. He states that
“… lead can build up over time in the body, and if the particular lipstick that contains lead is applied several times per day, it can add up to alarming levels of exposure.”
In the original study from the Environmental Defense group, at least 51% of those items tested had cadmium-based ingredients. Cadmium is known for its carcinogenic properties. Many studies in patients with breast cancer have found amounts of cadmium in their system.
And what is even more concerning is the fact that a lot of the metals here don’t immediately cause problems of a more serious health nature. Instead, they make the body more prone to develop problems in the future. As a result, when used over many years, they can increase the risk of cancer and a lot of other health disorders.
List of carcinogenic lipstick
- (#103c), Stargazer Lipstick
- (#1005 Red Lizard), NARS Semi-Matte
- (#410 Volcanic), L’Oreal Colour Riche
- (#125 Pink Petal), Maybelline Color Sensational
- (#165 Tickled Pink), L’Oreal Colour Riche
- (#580 Ruby Remix), CoverGirl Queen Collection Vibrant Hues
- (#27 Mauvey), Sonia Kashuk Luxury Lip Color
- (#748 Heroic), L’Oreal Intensely Moisturizing Lipcolor
- (#025 Warm Brick), CoverGirl Continuous Color
- (#475 Mauve Me), Maybelline Color Sensation
- (#009 Fabulous Fig), Revlon Matte
- (#1009 Funny Face), NARS Semi-Matte
- (#375 Ripened Red), Revlon ColorStay
- (#558 Mad for Mauve), Avon Beyond Color
- (#530 Mauve Amour), L’Oreal Endless
- (#631 Luminous Pink), Revlon Super Lustrous Peal
- (Toffee), Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer
- (#643 Satin Plum), Revlon Super Lustrous Peal