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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Is your lipstick toxic?

Hello ladies! We all love lipsticks and we have quite a lot of them varying from deep red to soft pink to cyanotic purple. Millions of women apply lipsticks every day and there are some style conscious users who touch up their color more than 20 times a day! YES shocking but true! Okay now the question arises :- Is it safe to do so? Are they exposing themselves to toxic chemicals as well? There is not really a lot of information about this but researches have shown that there are some heavy metals in lipsticks which might of some serious concerns! 

Researchers from University of California, Berkeley tested 32 lipsticks and lip glosses used by young women in a California youth program. They found 9 heavy metals in many lip products no matter what brand it was! These lip products ranged from $5 to $25. Well one application spreads 10 milligrams of product across a woman’s lips, most of which is ingested. Average use of lipstick means that a woman ingests nearly 24 milligrams of the product. Women that apply lipstick or lip gloss frequently may be ingesting as much as 87 milligrams of product per day.!! Isn't this surprising!

The question is "What happens if these heavy metals are ingested or swallowed?" This is of serious concern because using a lipstick is a chronic long term process and not a short term exposure. The Berkley scientist found Lead to be present in 75% of the lipsticks. Lead accumulation can affect the central nervous system, immune system and the kidneys.In adults, lead poisoning can show up as fatigue, irritability and sleeplessness, reproductive problems, joint, muscle and headaches, poor appetite, nervousness or constipation. 

Some metals are easily absorbed through the mucosal tissue of the mouth. There is a constant debate between lipstick industry and researchers as to how much is absorbed , everyone is pushing the F.D.A to study the issue further. 

What WE can do?
Till the time the debate is on we can take a common sense approach towards cosmetics. For starters DON'T let small kids play with lipsticks. This is because a large amount of metals will go in a small body making them more vulnerable to risk! Next , you don't wanna go over board in applying lipstick or lip gloss. Given the uncertainties, two or three times a day is all that beauty can reasonably demand. So next time before you touch up your lipstick constantly STOP and think. Your health is of top most priority! 


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