Researchers find toxic amounts of metal in lipstick, gloss

Tyler, TX (KYTX) -- Researchers are warning lipstick lovers about toxic amounts of metal found in test samples. Lipstick is a staple in nearly every makeup bag.

"I can't go out of the house or apartment without wearing makeup. Lipstick I absolutely love," Whitney Walker, a consumer in Tyler, said.

Walker likes the big punch of color the little tube delivers. "Whenever I'm going out, especially in the evening time, I wear lipstick," she said.

Walker like many shoppers isn't paying attention to the ingredients on the products.

"I just buy the color I like. If it's something that sounds fun, I'll just go with it," Walker said.

She says that could change if more studies back up the research at the University of California- Berkeley's School of Public Health.

"They tested 32 products, and 24 showed to have lead in them," Mike Yudizky, Public Health Education Manager at Parkland Hospital, told CBS 19.

Brands weren't singled out, but the research tested common lipsticks and glosses found in drug stores.

Yudizky points out while most lead amounts were lower than what's acceptable every day, it's not adults that worry researchers. 

"No amount would be safe for a child, so we don't need to let the children play with makeup," Yudizky said.

The average lipstick user applies 2.3 times a day, or 24 milligrams. Researchers say even that amount could result in too much exposure to chromium, which is linked to stomach tumors.

"You can't keep from ingesting it, because you're going to lick your lips and things like that. But don't be a heavy user," Yudizky said.

A heavy user ingests 80 milligrams every day, or reapplying lipstick about 14 times a day.


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