A program of Breast Cancer Prevention Partners

Makeup

Lip, eye, and other face products may contain chemicals of concern in the form of colorants (that can be contaminated with lead and heavy metals), preservatives (butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT)), anti-smudge (PTFE), and reflective effects (titanium dioxide). These chemicals are linked to serious health concerns including cancer, reproductive harm, endocrine disruption, and organ-system toxicity.

Science

BCPP’s 2016 scientific report Pretty Scary 2: Unmasking toxic chemicals in kids’ makeup showed in testing results that kids’ face paint and makeup contains harmful ingredients like arsenic, cadmium, chromium, and lead. Also, toxic VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and known carcinogens and endocrine disruptors, were found lurking both on and off the label of kids’ Halloween and play makeup.

Read the Report >

Campaign

As a result of public pressure mounted by the Campaign, cosmetic giants including Revlon and Avon have taken major steps to eliminate some of the harmful chemicals in their products. Although more progress is needed, we continue to monitor and encourage the progress of major cosmetics companies toward ingredient transparency and their adoption of safer chemical policies, including do not use lists.

The Safer Beauty Bill Package in U.S. Congress would make beauty and personal care products safer for everyone by getting the toxic chemicals out, reducing unsafe chemical exposures for the most vulnerable, and making ingredient transparency the new industry standard. Take action to make beauty and personal care products safer for all!

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Products of Concern

  • Blushes and bronzers
  • Eyeshadows
  • Lipstick
  • Lip and eye liners
  • Lip gloss
  • Chapstick
  • Highlighters
  • Pressed powders
  • Colored cosmetics

Chemicals of Concern

Tips

  1. Read Labels: Check ingredient labels to avoid the above chemicals of concern found in body care products.
  2. Simplify: Choose products with simpler ingredient lists and fewer synthetic chemicals. Select products that fully disclose their fragrance ingredients by skipping products with “fragrance” on the label.
  3. Minimalist: Using fewer products is the easiest and cheapest way to reduce your risk by minimizing your exposure to harmful chemicals in cosmetics.
  4. Use an App: Get Clearya or Think Dirty to find out whether products are toxic as you shop.
  5. Look Beyond: Since the beauty industry is largely unregulated, there are no legal standards for personal care products that are labeled “clean,” “pure,” “natural,” or “organic.” Look beyond false marketing claims by reading ingredient labels.
  6. DIY: Many products are easy and fun to make yourself. Plus, you can customize your recipes to match your specific beauty concerns and favorites. Make your own moisturizer, sugar or salt scrub, body oil, and more using simple, organic ingredients.

Explore other products

Looking for a Safer Alternative?​

Use Clearya’s app to find non-toxic products! Clearya alerts you to toxics and helps you find safe products.

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Visit Clearya >

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Get the Top 20 Toxic Ingredients to Avoid PDF FREE!

Get the Top Toxic Chemicals Found in Black Beauty Products PDF!

Get the Top Toxic Chemicals by Black Beauty Product Category PDF!

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Get the Full Red List PDF!

Get the Asthmagens, Allergens, & Irritants PDF!

Get the Emerging & Harmful to the Environment PDF!

Get the Ortho-Phthalates PDF!

Get the Formaldehyde Releaseing Preservative PDF!

Get the PFAS PDF!

Get the Do Not Use Chemicals Linked to Health Outcomes of Greater Concern to Black Women PDF!

Get the Do Not Use Chemicals of Concern for Everone PDF!

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