Posts Tagged ‘lead in lipstick’

Lead and Lipstick: 11 Brands That Are Pucker-Safe and Lead-Free

Thursday, February 16th, 2012


It is true that women from all over the globe will go to great lengths to look beautiful, but no woman should have to put her own health at risk just to look good. In recent years, it has been determined that many, if not most, of the lipsticks contain trace amounts of lead. Lead is a powerful element that has been known to cause a number of health problems in people of all ages, especially youngsters. Is the hubbub over this nothing more than a smear tactic used to scare women and make investors nervous, or should women of all ages be paying close attention to these findings?

Hot coals were thrown on the debate a few years ago when the Food and Drug Administration released information that stated one out of every three lipsticks sold in stores tested at more than 0.1 parts per million of lead. The FDA was quick to state their opinion that the amounts are so minute they cannot possibly cause any harm to the body, even over a prolonged amount of time.

Several doctors and advocacy groups disagree and have been trying to get the government to address the situation and rid the lipstick industry of lead entirely. The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and a handful of senators have recently put pressure on the FDA to establish and oversee a universal safety standard that would completely eliminate lead from lipstick forever. The FDA stated that they are currently waiting for a peer-reviewed journal to make a final decision about whether to get involved in cleaning up lipstick.

An editor of a well known health website brought up the good point that the way toxicologists and advocacy groups evaluate risk to the public is completely different, and this case is simply another example of two groups using two different criteria for measurement. As a result, it is unlikely that there will be able to find common ground in the near future.

But while they debate, it’s good to know that there’s a bright and color-rich side: Several lipsticks have tested free of lead, and we’ve got a list of them for you.

  • Avon Ultra Color Rich Cherry Jubilee
  • The Body Shop Lip Color Garnet
  • Clinique Long Last Lipstick Merlot
  • Dior Replenishing Lip Color Red Premiere
  • Estee Lauder Maraschino
  • MAC Matte Lipstick Viva Glam 1
  • Revlon Superlustrous Love That Red
  • Revlon Superlustrous Bed of Roses
  • Revlon Colorstay Lipcolor Red Velvet
  • Tarte Inside Out Vitamin Lipstick
  • Wet n Wild Mega Colors Cherry Blossom

The discussion is likely to go on for awhile yet, but the rest of us can do our part in the debate simply by staying informed. Not just on the arguments but also on what is in our favorite beauty products – because we should definitely know what we’re putting on and into our bodies.

Read more about chemicals in beauty products and green beauty products here.

What do you think? Should the government get involved in the lead-in-lipstick debate?

Lead in Lipstick and Other Lipstick Myths

Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

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Lead in Lipstick and Other Lipstick Myths

Sexy, vibrant, and ultra sleek, lipstick is an essential ingredient in any girls make up bag. As much as women love the satiny shades, rumors and wives tales abound about its safety and uses. Are these claims fact or fiction? Get the full scoop on the top four lipstick myths by reading further.

Myth #1: There is lead in lipsticks that are cheap.

This rumor is primarily spread by way of an email message from a friend. It claims that once high priced lipsticks have been marked down to incredible prices because it was discovered that they contained lead. The message goes on to say that you can test your lipsticks at home by rubbing them across a gold ring. If the lipstick color turns brown or black, then it contains lead.

In fact, many lipsticks do contain a small amount of lead. However, these amounts are present only in minute amounts. The FDA, which is responsible for the safety of consumer cosmetics, has tested several brands of lipstick. The results show that any lead found in lipstick is well below the recommended levels to ensure health and safety. They plan to continue to monitor the levels by ongoing testing and reporting. You cannot test for the presence of lead at home. This requires sophisticated scientific equipment.

Myth # 2: Wd-40 can remove lipstick stains from clothing.

Wd-40 has been a petroleum-based staple of American households for years. The claim, usually circulated by e-mail, is that it will remove lipstick stains from clothing. There is a lot of information on the web from people who have tried this and say it doesn’t work. However, according to the official WD-40 website, it is listed as a way to remove lipstick stains from carpeting and clothing.

Myth # 3: Lipstick can cause cancer.

This relates back to the hoax about the lead content of lipstick. The reasoning is that by swallowing or absorbing the lead present in lipstick, a woman can get cancer. The American Cancer Society debunks this theory, citing FDA studies that show that there is not enough lead present in lipstick to cause cancer. Lead poisoning causes fatigue, weight loss, and mental sluggishness. A person is far more likely to be poisoned by lead from old paint or old toys than by wearing lipstick over several lifetimes.

Myth #4: The average woman will swallow up to six pounds of lipstick during her lifetime.

This one has been circulating for many years and is absolutely false. Depending on the source, the amount of pounds ingested varies between three and ten. The rumor began appearing sometime in the 1990’s.

Considering that a normal rube of lipstick contains approximately 3 grams of product, you would need around 151 tubes to make a pound. To reach six pounds, you would need an astronomical number of lipstick tubes to make up six pounds. In addition, that is assuming that the woman actually ate the whole tube, which we know is not the case. Lipstick ingestion can only occur when the product is licked off the lips or is absorbed into the skin. Thus, only a very small amount of the product applied is actually consumed.