The FDA recently tested numerous lipsticks from various brands and found that lead was present in every single lipstick they conducted tests on. What’s even more startling is that the three lipsticks containing the most lead just so happen to be some of the most popular brands on the market, including CoverGirl, Revlon and L’Oreal.
It has been said by the FDA that there is no cause for alarm and that the level of lead found in the cosmetics does not pose a threat to the health and welfare of women who wear lipstick daily. However, despite their best efforts, there has been a great deal of weariness of cosmetics since these findings have been made public. Specifically, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics isn’t buying the FDA’s calls for calmness.
It must be noted that lead is found naturally in air, water and soil, meaning the lead found in these cosmetics could have come from the raw ingredients in the products. But considering that some lipsticks had lead levels that were as much as 34 times the amount of others, it really makes you wonder what some companies are putting into their cosmetics that other companies are not. Specifically, CoverGirl’s Incredifull Lipcolor Maximum Red was 34 times higher in lead content than the lowest-scoring lipstick, Avon’s Ultra Color Rich Cherry Jubilee. Obviously Avon is doing something differently than CoverGirl to make sure that their lipstick does not contain a high lead content.
Even a small amount of lead being found in women’s cosmetics is not something to be taken lightly, considering studies have found that the average woman consumes about four pounds of lipstick throughout her lifetime from doing simple tasks like eating, drinking a licking her lips.
Florida’s Department of Health said that there is “no safe level of lead in blood.” Even in trace amounts, lead collects in the body over time and it stores in your bones. For women, lead is released into the blood at three key times–during pregnancy, during breastfeeding and after menopause.
There is one very valuable lesson to be learned from the FDA’s recent findings, and that is to make sure you educate yourself about what is being put into the beauty products you use. To check what ingredients are in the cosmetics you own, check out the Cosmetics Safety Database and also be sure to sign this petition to ask the FDA to test finished cosmetics for lead, instead of merely testing the colors added to cosmetics after the fact.