WHICH lipsticks and gloss are the worst offenders?
In the Food and Drug Administration's 2011 analysis, the highest lead reading was found in a deep floral-pink lipstick and the lowest in a neutral lip balm.
A European study found that brown lipstick tended to be highest in lead, while researchers in Saudi Arabia reported that dark colours averaged 8.9 p.p.m. of lead, compared with 0.37 p.p.m. in light-coloured lipsticks.
Here are more facts:
Aluminium is added to lipsticks as a stabiliser to keep colours from bleeding.
Titanium oxide is used as a whitening agent which softens red into pink.
Manufacturers often use glittery, microscopic flakes of mica, a naturally occurring mineral formation, to add shine to lip gloss. Mica contains metals such as lead, manganese, chromium and aluminium.
More-intense lipstick colours may carry a bigger metallic load because of contamination in pigments.