Friday, October 12, 2007

Lipstick: Don’t Lead Me Down!

Talk about heavy makeup: How about lead-laced lipstick? The toxic heavy metal, which causes nervous system damage and developmental deficits in overexposed children and is also linked to reduced fertility, has been found in several lipsticks from popular brands, according to a report released today by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics (CSC). Lead levels higher than the FDA’s 0.1 part-per-million (ppm) limit for lead in candy were found in L’Oreal, Cover Girl and Dior lipsticks. One more good reason to keep cosmetics out of children’s reach!

The FDA has not established a limit for lead in lipstick. Time for the agency to stop polishing its nails.

One-third of the 33 big-brand lipsticks CSC tested contained lead above FDA’s candy limit. Sixty-one percent contained some amount of lead—which did not appear on ingredient lists. Check the names in your makeup bag, and remember, While CSC couldn’t test all lipsticks, their report gives some welcome specifics, below.

Lightest Lipsticks (less than 0.02 ppm lead)

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

Heaviest Hitters (more than 0.1 ppm lead)

L’Oreal Colour Riche True Red, Colour Riche Classic Wine
Cover Girl Incredifull Lipcolor Maximum Red, Continuous Color Cherry Brandy
Dior Addict Positive Red
Maybelline Moisture Extreme Cocoa Plum, Moisture Extreme Midnight Red
Peacekeeper Paint Me Compassionate

One brand may have both light and heavy lipsticks because contamination may occur at various points along the sourcing and manufacture chain. CSC is calling for an industry overhaul, and asks consumers to write our representatives to seek removal of lead and other hazardous ingredients in cosmetics (see “parabens,” Word of the Week at For the full report, including lipsticks with trace amounts of lead below FDA’s candy levels, see For the scoop on lax regulation of toxins in cosmetics and other consumer products, see Mark Schapiro's incisive and informative new book, Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products and What's at Stake for American Power


Lead in Lipstick said...

First, kids dying from lead in toys. Now, they find high levels of lead in lipsticks. What's next - lead in food? Are women going to start dying now too from using lipstick too much?


There's a detailed report about it at:

redacted said...

everybody in san francisco oughta come out to bernal
and hear mark schapiro and have a conversation with him at red hill books on cortland. he starts at 7.
looking forward to a green economy!

Redacted said...

he'll be at red hill books on december 13th at 7.
it's not just lipstick and lotions but the plastics containing all that and more!

polycarbonate drinking bottles said...


I Think

CresceNet said...

Gostei muito desse post e seu blog é muito interessante, vou passar por aqui sempre =) Depois dá uma passada lá no meu site, que é sobre o CresceNet, espero que goste. O endereço dele é . Um abraço.

Eco-Smart Consumer said...

I'm so glad you're bringing attention to this. If you don't mind, I'd love to link the Eco-Smart Consumer blog to this. Personal care products are one of the issues covered. You may want to check out that section on our site at Thanks for sharing all of this info!

Anonymous said...

So you wanna say that there is lead in Dior cosmetics? That just can't be!

Meredith said...

It is horrifying what medical nightmare we are unknowingly participating in through these chemically enhanced personal care products. Glad you are getting the word out.

You may wish to look at the first USDA FOOD grade Organic Personal care and Cosmetic line. Just b/c something is labeled organic or natural does not make it so. There is alot of Geenwashing going on in the Organic industry.

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