So, you've just switched your favourite conventional lippy to one of those groovy, brand new ones that are full of natural ingredients and you're feeling pretty damn good. After all, you eat healthy, avoid artificial colours, flavours and preservatives so converting your cosmetics is just the next step really isn't it?
The reason you bought that fab new lippy is it ticks all the boxes:
Vegan - tick (no crushed up carmine/cochineal beetle shell)
Palm Oil Free - tick (saving the Orangutans)
No Synthetic Fragrance - tick
Cruelty Free - tick.
So all is cool and groovy huh?
Sorry to say, but maybe not! Have you had a really good look at the ingredients list? Ever wondered what gives your fave new lippy that great colour? Does it list any FD&C ingredients? Did you even look at the ingredients list and do you happen to know what FD&C is?
Well FD&C stands for Food Drug and Cosmetic approved. FD&C is an abbreviation for the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, which was passed to regulate potentially harmful ingredients in products sold within the U.S. Although legal, FD&C color pigments can still be harmful to the skin and body. Traditionally these were derived from Coal Tar (known carcinogen) but more often today they are synthesized from Petroleum. FD&C colours have been linked to allergic reactions, skin irritations, nervous system toxicity, reproductive system disruption and even cancer. In a report entitled “Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risk” released by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), possible side effects of color pigments include: kidney tumors, brain tumors, urinary bladder tumors, testes tumors, immune system tumors, organ damage, birth defects, nerve cell damage, hypersensitivity and hyperactivity. Almost all dyes contain cancer-causing chemicals individually, and may have increased effects when combined. "FD&C and D&C colors are coaltar (bituminous coal) derivatives that are continously tested on animals due to their carcinogenic properties" - PETA
Given that we ingest or basically end up eating our lipstick, I'd rather not use anything that has been conjured up in a laboratory from Petroleum. Synthetically-enhanced colours may also contain heavy metal salts which can penetrate into the skin. It’s for this reason that many FC&C and D&C colours have been banned or withdrawn in some countries.
Instead natural colourants like Beetroot and Clays (iron oxides) are being used. Sure, it's hard to get a vibrant red lippy without FD&C pigments or ground up Carmine/Cochineal Bugs but I'd rather not use products or more to the point "eat products" with them, how about you?
So, before you buy your next lippy, have a really good look at the ingredients list! If you see ingredients you're not sure about visit The Environmental Working Groups "Skin Deep" Cosmetics Safety Data Base and enter a search for the ingredient. The data base will give you all the information in regards to safety. Note that some FD&C colours are safer than others and that reds/blues generally tend to be the worst offenders.
So do your research, pucker up safely and don't dye!
I'd love to hear what kind of Lippy you choose to wear, leave a comment below.
Blessings, Monique x