Girl’s clothing store, Justice, has stopped selling its “Just Shine Shimmer Powder” in response to a damaging report made by the Scientific Analytical Institute in Greensboro, North Carolina, that found that the make-up product contained dangerous levels of asbestos. The blush, targeted at pre-teen girls, could negatively affect the ladies’ health as they age. As warned by lab director of research and analytical services, Sean Fitzgerald, on WTVR.com, “in this powder designed for children, they could die an untimely death in their 30s or 40s because of the exposure to asbestos in this product. Children should not be allowed to breathe it. If a 10-year old inhaled this fiber today, when he’s 50 years old, it’s still there.”
Apart from asbestos, the shimmer powder was also found to contain four different heavy metals. Fitzgerald warned that the ill effects these materials could have on children’s health are not noticeable right away. He explained that fibers get inhaled and build up in the lungs over time. This, in turn, makes the tween more susceptible to disease as they age.
The report concluded that while Justice did not maliciously intend to harm children, there may have been an oversight on how their products were made and sourced. Fitzgerald noted that talc (a common mineral used in various make-up products) can become contaminated with asbestos during the extraction and refining process. Companies that do not source the mineral correctly can — inadvertently — be making items laden with toxins.
“The problem is, it’s not necessarily the manufacturer, there was no intent to put this in the talc, but they shouldn’t have been using that reserve, because they should’ve tested it and known that the talc source was contaminated with asbestos,” Fitzgerald said on ABC11.com.
Justice has started their own private investigation on the matter. In their official page on Facebook, the company wrote, “[we have] a long history of concern for the health and safety of our girls. We are deeply committed to the safety and integrity of our products. Upon receiving an inquiry about the Just Shine Shimmer Powder product (Item number 192307, or SKU number 19052777), we immediately began an investigation and, out of an abundance of caution, stopped the sale of this product in our stores and on our website.”
The same report tested other make-up products from the same brand, including the “Just Shine Baked Blush” and “Just Shine Shimmer Bronzing Powder” and found that neither product contained asbestos or any heavy metal.
Being beautiful should not cost you your life
Knowing what’s in your beauty products has become all the more important. Remember that we absorb more than half of all the things we slather on our skin. An infographic posted on MindBodyGreen.com lists some toxic chemicals to avoid.
- Avobenzone – This popular sunscreen ingredient has been linked with numerous health conditions including liver and kidney failure. There is even evidence that proves that the ingredient can negatively interact with chlorinated water (e.g. water found in swimming pools) and damage health. (Related: Science SHOCK: Chlorine in swimming pools transforms sunscreen into cancer-causing toxic chemical right on your skin.)
- Triclosan – A synthetic antibacterial ingredient, many acne products use triclosan. However, the EPA has registered it as a pesticide which has detrimental effects to the health of humans and crops.
- Phthalates – Studies have found that this toxin can cause birth defects, decrease sperm count, and incite early puberty among girls and boys.
- Parabens – These are preservatives that often come with the prefix methyl-, butyl-, ethyl-, or propyl- when listed on labels. Parabens are used in various skin care products, including deodorants. They can cause infertility in men and disrupt normal hormone production levels.
- Synthetic colors – These are added to increase the appeal products have, but can lead to skin allergies. Some health experts say that synthetic colors are possible carcinogens.
Going natural may be the best way to look and feel good. You can achieve that inner glow by eating the right food, exercising daily, and practicing mind-strengthening techniques such as meditation.