carbon black

Carbon black is a dark black powder used as a pigment in cosmetics such as eyeliner, mascara and lipstick.[1] It is produced by incomplete combustion of carbon-based products such as coal tar,[2] and has been linked to increased incidence of cancer and negative effects on organs.[3]

FOUND IN: Eyeliner, mascara, nail polish, eye shadow, brush-on-brow, lipstick, blushers, rouge, makeup, and foundation

WHAT TO LOOK FOR ON THE LABEL: Carbon black, D & C Black No. 2, acetylene black, channel black, furnace black, lamp black, and thermal black

WHAT IS CARBON BLACK? Carbon black is the product of incomplete combustion of carbon-containing materials.MORE...

 [6] Commercial carbon black, in particular, has organic contaminants such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which have been identified as human carcinogens. [7]  PAHs damage DNA, [8] and exposure to PAHs can lead to tumors on lungs, bladder and skin; and PAHs can also cause non-cancer toxicities like reproductive and developmental toxicity. [9] PAHs bind tightly to the surface of carbon black and can only be removed with the use of solvents such as toluene at high temperatures. [10] People can be exposed to carbon black through inhalation, skin or eye contact, and food and beverages. [11] [12]

HEALTH CONCERNS: Cancer (possible), Organ system toxicityMORE...

Cancer: California EPA’s Proposition 65 list identifies carbon black (airborne, unbound particles of respirable size) as a carcinogen. [13] The International Agency for research on cancer classifies carbon black as a possible human carcinogen. [14] Experimental studies in female rats found increased incidence of lung tumors in rats that inhaled carbon black. [15] NIOSH raises concerns about lymphatic cancer among workers exposed to carbon black, largely due to the presence of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in carbon black. [16] Furthermore, carbon black containing PAHs may lead to skin cancer. [17] Long-term exposure to carbon black can lead pulmonary inflammation, fibrosis and lung tumors in rats. [18]

Organ System Toxicity: Several human studies indicate carbon black exposure may increase the risk of lung disease. [19] Carbon black exposure is a possible concern for workers, particularly exposures to the respiratory system and eyes when it is in powder form. [20] Early research suggests carbon black may increase the incidence of cardiovascular disease. [21]

VULNERABLE POPULATIONS: All people are vulnerable, but especially industrial workers and women.

REGULATIONS: Restricted in cosmetics in United States[4] and EU. [5]

HOW TO AVOID: Read labels and avoid cosmetics and personal care products containing carbon black, D & C Black No. 2, acetylene black, channel black, furnace black, lamp black, and thermal black.

REFERENCES 

[1] Federal Register Final Rule- 69 FR 44927 July 28, 2001: Listing of Color Additives Subject to Certification; D & C Black No.2. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[2] International Carbon Black Association. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[3] Wisconsin Department of Health Services. Carbon Black. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[4] Federal Register Final Rule- 69 FR 44927 July 28, 2001: Listing of Color Additives Subject to Certification; D & C Black No.2. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[5] Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 November 2009 on cosmetic products. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[6] International Carbon Black Association. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[7] National Toxicology Program. Report on Carcinogens, Twelfth Edition. Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons. Available online. July 18, 2014.

[8] National Toxicity Program (NTP). Available online. 2014.

[9] National Toxicity Program (NTP). Available online. 2014

[10] Weinand F., Statement regarding the presence of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Carbon Black. Evonik Industries, 2009.

[11] NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards. Carbon black. Available online. July 11, 2014.

[12] Wisconsin Department of Health Services. Carbon Black. Available online. July 14, 2014.

[13] Chemicals Known to the State to Cause Cancer or Reproductive Toxicity. Available online. July 11, 2014.

[14] IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans. Carbon Black evaluation and rationale. vol. 93, pp 190-1.

[15] IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans. Carbon Black evaluation and rationale. vol. 93, pp 190-1.

[16] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Available online. July 14th.

[17] U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Occupational safety and health guideline for carbon black potential human carcinogen. Available online. July 16, 2014.

[18] Ramanakumar A., et al. Risk of lung cancer following exposure to carbon black, titanium dioxide and talc: Results from two case-control studies in Montreal. Int. J. Cancer, vol. 122, pp 183-189, 2008.

[19] IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans. Carbon Black evaluation and rationale. vol. 93, pp 190-1.

[20] NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards. Carbon black. Available online. July 11, 2014.

[21] Kim H., et al. The impact of intratracheally instilled carbon black on the cardiovascular system of rats: evaluation of blood homocysteine and hyperactivity of platelets. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A: Current Issues, vol. 75, no. 24, pp 1471-83.