FDA: Lead found in 400 lipsticks

Agency says levels not a safety concern, some disagree

Published On: Feb 15 2012 10:19:54 AM EST   Updated On: Feb 16 2012 03:24:19 AM EST
Lipstick file

You may need to worry about more than lipstick on your teeth the next time you pucker up.

A new analysis by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration shows that 400 of the most popular lipsticks on the market contain traces of lead, the Washington Post reported.

View the full report here

Five lipsticks made by L’Oreal and Maybelline ranked among the top 10 most contaminated of the cosmetics, according to the FDA tests. Two Cover Girl and two NARS lipsticks also landed in the top 10, as did one made by Stargazer.

The least contaminated lipstick was also the least expensive: Wet & Wild Mega Mixers Lip Balm.

FDA officials told Reuters in a statement that the levels found in testing are safe, and nothing new.

Reports of lead in lipstick date to the 1990s, and have resurfaced periodically since then.

“The FDA did not find high levels of lead in lipstick," the FDA said in a statement. "We developed and tested a method for measuring lead in lipstick and did not find levels that would raise health concerns.”

The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics maintains that any amount of lead in cosmetics is too much.

“There is no safe level of lead exposure,” Stacy Malkan, co-founder of Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, told ABC. “It builds up in the body over time. A little bit every day is adding up and staying with you.”