These 18 Brands Of Lipstick Are Full Of Cancer-Causing Heavy Metals

Could your lipstick be full of hidden toxins? Women of all ages use lipsticks and gloss to brighten or finish their look. But what they may not know is that these cosmetics could be harboring a variety of harmful metals.

Since your skin is permeable, these metals are quickly absorbed into your bloodstream, causing havoc in your body. Many women are also guilty of licking their lips, causing the ingestion of theses chemicals too.

Is There Lead in my Lipstick?

The New York Times notes: “Most lipsticks contain at least a trace of lead, researchers have shown. But a new study finds that a wide range of brands contain as many as eight other metals, from cadmium to aluminum.”

Although the FDA insists that the level of metals found in lipsticks is inconsequential, scientists believe that the long-term, daily exposure to these toxins could pose a serious risk. Heavy metals accumulate in the body, and over time, their presence can result in a wide range of health problems. On top of that, the FDA admits in an article titled, “Lipstick and Lead: Questions and Answers”, that there is currently no set limit for the amount of lead used in cosmetics .

And lead isn’t the only concern. In her recent study, Dr. Katharine Hammond, a professor of environmental health sciences at the University of California at Berkeley and the lead author of the new analysis, found traces of cadmium, cobalt, aluminum, titanium, manganese, chromium, copper and nickel in 24 lip glosses and eight lipstick brands.

So, should you throw out all of these potentially dangerous cosmetics? Perhaps, but the most important thing is to exercise caution in the amount of exposure you sustain. Many women apply lipstick or gloss up to 24 times per day. Dr. Hammond advises that women at least decrease the number of times per day they apply. Two to three times will pose much less risk than 24.

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Choosing softer hues of lipsticks and glosses can also decrease your exposure. In Dr. Hammond’s studies, she found that the darker the color, the heavier the concentration of metals.

Still, it seems that cosmetics manufacturers and the FDA should take responsibility for the safety of these products. Dr. Sean Palfrey, medical director of the lead poisoning prevention program at Boston University Medical Center agrees, saying, “It shouldn’t be a huge step for manufacturers to take out trace amounts of metals in a situation where they don’t know and we don’t know what’s safe for people who use them”.

An Industry-Wide Problem

Lipstick isn’t the only cosmetic that contains heavy metals. In fact, the Environmental Defense group tested 49 different commonly-used makeup items for contamination.The items included:14 eye shadows, 8 lipsticks or glosses, 5 blushes or bronzers, 7 mascaras, 5 foundations, 4 concealers, 4 powders, and 2 eyeliners. Nearly all the items tested were contaminated with heavy metals.

Here are the results:

  • 96% contained lead
  • 90% contained beryllium
  • 61% contained thallium
  • 51% contained cadmium
  • 20% contained arsenic

Worse yet, nearly all the products tested contained an average of 4 out of the 8 metals and each product contained, an average, 2 of the 4 toxic metals, such as arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury.

One FDA report found that 400 popular lipsticks contained trace amounts of lead. Even though it was stated that the products only contained trace amounts of the metal, they did not pose a safety concern.

“Lead builds up in the body over time and lead-containing lipstick applied several times a day, every day, can add up to significant exposure levels. The latest studies show there is no safe level of lead exposure,” said Dr. Mark Mitchell, president of the Connecticut Coalition for Environmental Justice.

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Still not concerned? Here’s what the World Health Organization warns about lead:

  • Lead is a cumulative toxicant that affects multiple body systems and is particularly harmful to young children.
  • Lead in the body is distributed to the brain, liver, kidneys and bones. Your body stores the metal in your teeth and bones, where it accumulates over time.
  • Your body releases lead from your bone during pregnancy, which becomes a source of exposure to the developing fetus.
  • There is no known level of lead exposure that is considered safe.
  • Lead poisoning is entirely preventable.

What Lipsticks Should I Avoid?

The following list contains the lipsticks you should avoid at all costs:

  1. Avon Beyond Color (#558 Mad for Mauve)
  2. Revlon Super Lustrous Peal (#643 Satin Plum)
  3. L’Oreal Intensely Moisturizing Lipcolor (#748 Heroic)
  4. Maybelline Color Sensational (#125 Pink Petal)
  5. NARS Semi-Matte (#1005 Red Lizard)
  6. CoverGirl Queen Collection Vibrant Hues (#580 Ruby Remix)
  7. L’Oreal Colour Riche (#410 Volcanic)
  8. Maybelline Color Sensation (#475 Mauve Me)
  9. NARS Semi-Matte (#1009 Funny Face)
  10. L’Oreal Colour Riche (#165 Tickled Pink)
  11. Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer (Toffee)
  12. Stargazer Lipstick (#103c)
  13. Revlon Matte (#009 Fabulous Fig)
  14. Sonia Kashuk Luxury Lip Color (#27 Mauvey)
  15. L’Oreal Endless (#530 Mauve Amour)
  16. Revlon ColorStay (#375 Ripened Red)
  17. Revlon Super Lustrous Peal (#631 Luminous Pink)
  18. CoverGirl Continuous Color (#025 Warm Brick)

On the other hand, here are some safer lipstick alternatives:

  • Organic Infused Lip Love Lipstick
  • Rejuva Minerals Pur Lips Lipstick
  • Bella Mari Pure Mineral Lipstick
  • Coastal Classic Creations Canyon Lipstick
  • W3ll People Extreme Lip Gloss
  • Isoi Bulgarian Rose Lip Treatment Balm
  • Maia’s Mineral Galaxy Lipstick
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