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Canadians Asked to Face the Facts About What They Put on Their Faces: National TV and online ads alert Canadians to the dangerous, undisclosed, substances in their cosmetics

Environmental Defence
January 9th, 2012

Toronto, ON – Putting on makeup in the morning should not be a dangerous game. In a cheeky new ad campaign launched today, Environmental Defence, the environmental organization who led the charge for the ban on Bisphenol A (BPA) in baby bottles alerts Canadians to the many cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting and allergy-inducing substances contained in the personal care products they use every day. The campaign urges the federal government to ban harmful ingredients in cosmetics and to give the Canadian beauty industry a long overdue makeover.

"Our experience shows that consumers can and will demand safer products from companies," said Rick Smith, executive director, Environmental Defence. “We hope that the government will also hear their call, and follow Europe's lead by improving labeling, and banning or restricting toxic substances in cosmetics. The federal government has made some major strides in improving safety with other consumer products – like kids’ toys and baby bottles – of late. Cosmetics need to be next. ”

To raise awareness about the toxins in Canadian products, Environmental Defence partnered with creative agency Open to create the 60-second spot “How To Look Pretty Without Poisoning Yourself,” directed by Partners Films’ Aleysa Young, that begins airing nationally today.

In the ad, a chipper game show contestant must choose a cosmetic product that doesn’t contain toxins and cancer-causing chemicals, a “game” that thousands of Canadian women play on a daily basis whenever they buy make-up or perfume containing harmful substances. Naturally, she loses because flaws in Canadian cosmetic regulations mean that there are undisclosed toxic ingredients in many cosmetic products.

The ad is part of Environmental Defence’s ongoing Just Beautiful campaign rallying for safer cosmetics in Canada. Today, they also relaunch the campaign’s website, www.justbeautiful.ca, to offer consumers information about safe products and companies that have pledged that the products they produce or sell are free of the Toxic Ten, the ten worst ingredients found in personal care products.

"Canadians deserve to know what’s in the products they use, and to be protected from toxic substances in our personal care products,” Smith continued. “The Just Beautiful campaign gives Canadians the resources to select safer products, until our legislation guarantees that we don’t need to be so choosey to ensure the safety of our families.”

The site will also include recommendations from Just Beautiful Cabinet members including Sarah Harmer, Gill Deacon, and Jennifer Podemski, to name a few. The Cabinet is a group of volunteers who share a commitment to the goals of the campaign.

The 60-second ad can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxbnvXRY-7Q

About Environmental Defence (www.environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is Canada's most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.

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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Stephanie Kohls, Environmental Defence, 416-323-9521 ext. 232; 647-280-9521 (cell); skohls@environmentaldefence.ca