Endocrine Disruptors in Mascara

An initiative of the Danish Consumer Council (DCC) THINK Chemicals examined 55 different mascara products. The scientists checked the ingredients listed on the label against those on the endocrine disruptor priority list. The result? Some 32 of the products contain ingredients that trigger allergic reactions or are endocrine-disrupting and harmful to the environment.

The chemicals identified include:

  • Parabens (endocrine-disrupting)
  • Butylated hydroxytoluene: BHT (endocrine-disrupting)
  • Cyclopentasiloxane (endocrine-disrupting)
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene: PTFE (harmful to the environment)
  • Chloroxylenol (allergenic)
  • Imidazolidinyl urea (allergenic)
  • Iodopropynyl butylcarbamate (allergenic)

In their report, the researchers emphasize that the concentrations of the individual chemicals
involved are comparatively low and therefore not problematic. However, health issues would be possible given the sum of the different chemicals. When the effects of individual chemicals are strengthened in this manner, scientists speak of a cocktail effect.

The report also states that well-known brands, like Clinique, MAC, Chanel, Helena Rubinstein, Lancôme, and L’Oreal market mascaras with and without problematic chemicals. Some company spokespersons, among them those from Estée Lauder Cosmetics and L’Oréal, assure that they use only proven and safe ingredients. If the products contain preservatives, they are needed to protect against bacteria and fungus.

DCC THINK Chemicals has often noted the presence of problematic chemicals in the past. See our blog entry, Danish Consumer Organization Points Out Dangerous Substances in Cosmetics.

Ensure the legal compliance of your products. If you have any questions, you can contact us at cosmetic@kft.de.

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