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How To Shop For An Eco-Friendly Lipstick: Avoid the Dangers of Lead in Your Lipstick

When it comes to discerning the dangers of lead in your lipstick, the research is confusing and dangerously difficult to understand. Is it alright to have “negligible” amounts of cancer causing lead in a product that is applied to lips and then ingested in small amounts?

Depending on the type of lipstick applied, the average person consumer on average around 1-2 lbs of lipstick every year through regular usage. Every time a woman, or man with a lip product, eats with the lipstick or chapped lip product a bit of that product gets eaten along with the food.|

Because the FDA does not set any legal limit on lead lipstick, it is up to the consumer to assess the risk. According to a Seattle Times article, ‘The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics said one-third of the 33 red lipsticks examined by an independent lab contained a level of lead exceeding 0.1 parts per million (ppm), the FDA’s limit for lead in candy.’ (Click to read their study)

Exposure to Lead in Lipstick

The common industry response and thinking is that people are exposed to low levels of lead in many other products, and that lipsticks have such a small amount.

What amount is alright for you?

Because the FDA allows for small amount of lead and other metals in makeup and food coloring, it is truly difficult to say that it is straight out dangerous. However, combined with the multiple exposures to toxins, such as phthalates mixed with bisphenol-A mixed with methylmercury mixed with dioxins (all common exposures) in our life, we can see how the build up of dangerous levels of toxins can occur. Not to mention products that are imported and not tested by the FDA on any scale.

Personal cosmetics have come under scrutiny by organizations such as the EWG – Environmental Working Group.

The EWG – Environmental Working Group

This group of scientists spent thousands of hours researching and compiling a database which cross-references possible toxic chemicals with beauty products sold throughout the United States. This gives the consumer a tool to use before purchasing another beauty product, as well as getting a read on the safety level of the products already in the bathroom cabinet.

This is lucky for today’s consumer because the FDA, which is meant to protect has only banned about 11 or 12 ingredients. Whereas European countries have banned nearly 1,200. That leaves a huge gap and a huge question as to the safety of the ingredients used in cosmetics today.

Your Eco-Friendly Lipstick

Gone are the days when natural beauty meant no makeup. Today, there is an amazing array of natural ingredient and certified organic makeup lines featuring eco friendly lipstick. When looking for organic lipstick, check the label for an EcoCert organic certification as well as the ingredients list such as – essential oils, flowers, natural butters, and botanical extracts.

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