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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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Is there lead in lipstick?

Lead is an unintended contaminant or impurity that can be present at very low levels in some color additives and in other common ingredients, such as water, that are used to produce cosmetics. FDA recently conducted a test of the lead levels of specific lipsticks. Findings showed that the levels of lead found in these lipstick samples were extremely low, and FDA does not believe that any of the products tested pose a safety concern. The results of this test are available in the article, “Determination of total lead in lipstick,” published in the July-August 2009 issue of the Journal of Cosmetic Science.

FDA intends to conduct further testing of lipsticks marketed in the United States, and will assess whether any further FDA action is warranted based on its findings.

To learn more, see Lipstick and Lead: Questions and Answers. For information on other cosmetic products, ingredients, and potential contaminants, see Product and Ingredient Safety.

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