The Dangers Of…Lipstick? (Yes, Lipstick)

lipstick make upCould a pretty pucker be the kiss of death? According to Reuters, about 400 lipsticks recently tested by the FDA contain traces of lead. In 2007, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics ran its own tests on 33 red lipsticks and found that one-third exceeded the FDA’s limit for lead in candy.

The FDA pushed back in its latest report stating that: “Lipstick, as a product intended for topical use with limited absorption, is ingested only in very small quantities. We do not consider the lead levels we found in the lipsticks to be a safety concern.” However, Stacy Malkan, of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics disagrees. “We know that ingestion of lipstick happens,” she told Reuters. She also points out that lead accumulates in the body over time.

The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics is particularly concerned about lead exposure for children and pregnant women. The CDC’s Advisory Committee for Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention recently stated that there is no safe lead level for children. Lead poisoning causes a wide range of problems from low IQ and slowed grown in children to memory loss, mood disorders, and miscarriage in adults. CLICK HERE for the lipsticks with the MOST lead

The FDA found the highest levels in lipsticks made by Procter & Gamble (Cover Girl brand), L’Oreal (L’Oreal, Body Shop and Maybelline brands), and Revlon. The lipsticks containing the most lead (measured in parts per million) are:

  • Maybelline Color Sensational, Pink Petal (7.9 ppm)
  • L’Oreal Colour Riche, Volcanic, (7.0 ppm)
  • NARS Semi-Matte, Red Lizard (4.93 ppm)