Who would have imagined anyone would put asbestos in makeup? What purpose would it serve? Until a few weeks ago, the greatest worry most people had about children’s makeup might be that it contained substandard ingredients. Nobody would have imagined that anyone would dare to add asbestos. But that is exactly what has happened.
Last week international children’s accessories retailer, Claire’s made waves when a concerned Rhode Island mother’s investigation of several of its children’s makeup products found that they contained asbestos. After an initial test of her daughter’s make-up kit revealed asbestos, she purchased several other products from Claire’s boutiques in several other states. They all found asbestos.
Makeup sets covered in hot pink glitter and rainbow rhinestone shaped hearts were found to contain tremolite asbestos. Asbestos particles and fibers are known to cause cancer if breathed or inhaled.
After the results were made public in the news, the retail giant quickly pulled 17 products from their shelves and announced they would be conducting their own investigation into their products. They did not acknowledge any wrongdoing.
“High levels of asbestos”
The makeup was tested at the Scientific Analytical Institute in North Carolina. According to a CNN story, the lab, which specializes in testing for asbestos, found “high levels of asbestos” in every color of eye shadow in the makeup kit that was sent to them. The asbestos was found in items containing talc.
Many people are shocked to learn that asbestos is still legal in many products. Asbestos is still legal. While regulations limiting the amount of asbestos that may be used exist, efforts to ban asbestos entirely have been unsuccessful thus far.
How could this get into makeup?
How could bad materials get into cosmetics? People often assume that federal regulations restrict most of what is sold in the American marketplace. This is simply not true. Currently, federal law does not require the FDA to approve cosmetic products or ingredients. Cosmetics must pass certain regulations, but there is no requirement that the FDA approve items introduced to market.
It is up to the consumer to beware of what they are buying. This does not mean that retailers, such as Claire’s have no liability. Individuals concerned about asbestos exposure should consult with experienced asbestos exposure attorneys about their options.