The guidance applies to lipstick, eye shadow, blush and more.
The Food and Drug Administration released draft guidelines Wednesday aimed at regulating lead levels in lipstick and other cosmetic products.
The agency recommended a maximum lead level of 10 parts per million (ppm) in certain cosmetics, including lipstick, lip gloss, eye shadow, blush and body lotion. The guidance does not apply to “topically applied products” that are drugs or hair dyes, the agency said.
“We consider the recommended maximum lead level to be achievable with the use of good manufacturing practices and to be consistent with the 10 ppm maximum lead level for similar products recommended by other countries,” the FDA wrote.
The agency noted that lead can appear as an impurity in cosmetic ingredients due to its “background presence” in the manufacturing environment.
“In our surveys, which do not necessarily reflect the full range of products that are currently on the market, a small number of samples had lead levels that exceed the maximum level we are recommending,” the agency said. “Our goal is to ensure that cosmetic lip products and externally applied cosmetics do not contain lead as an impurity at levels that would pose a health risk.”
Women who apply lipstick several times a day could easily be ingesting high amounts of lead over their lifetimes, along with other unknown chemicals. When you consider that the average woman will apply up to 9 pounds of lipstick in her lifetime and swallow 30 percent of it; and that 65 percent wear lipstick daily and 40 percent own more than 20 different lipstick tubes, the importance of the new FDA rules become clear.
Considering that everything you put on your skin and lips will enter your system, it would be wise to clean up your beauty regimen by replacing commercial products with all-natural compounds you can make yourself. Olive oil and coconut oil, for example, can replace commercial moisturizers and some hair products. Pure essential oils can add scent to homemade products.