Americans assume personal care products on the market today have been tested or approved by the federal government. However, they are largely unregulated. In fact, it has been more than 80 years since Congress last updated the federal law designed to ensure that personal care products are safe. The Food and Drug Administration does not even require the basic safety testing of ingredients in personal care products before they are used.
Although other countries have taken action to protect their citizens from chemicals linked to cancer and reproductive harm, FDA lacks the basic tools needed to ensure the safety of cosmetics and other personal care products.
Now a bipartisan group of lawmakers wants to change that.
News coverage of EWG topics including cosmetics and household toxins appeared across the web from sites including the Los Angeles Times, Shine by Yahoo!, and Prevention. EWG released a statement on a finding from an independent science panel finding PFOA, an ingredient that has been used to make non-stick coatings and stain-resistant materials, is linked to testicular and kidney cancers.Read More
California state scientists have found that some nail polishes widely used in California salons are laced with high levels of three chemicals linked to birth defects, asthma and other health risks.Read More
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned this week that more than 35 imported skin creams, antiseptic soaps and anti-aging lotions have recently been tied to mercury poisoning that in some instances sent users to the hospital.
The maker of Brazilian Blowout -- one of numerous hair straighteners on the market containing formaldehyde, a known carcinogen -- is now required to provide health warnings on its product's packaging and website, revamp deceptive marketing practices and pay civil penalties under California consumer protection law. These measures are part of a settlement agreement between the Los Angeles-based company and California Attorney General Kamala Harris.Read More
A class action settlement requiring the manufacturer of Brazilian Blowout, a popular chemical hair straightener to pay a small compensation to salon workers and customers who used its formaldehyde-laced products doesn’t go far enough to protect public health.Read More
U.S. Food and Drug Administration researchers have detected lead in 400 brands of lipstick tested by the agency. At least two popular brands had amounts of the neurotoxin above the threshold the state of California considers safe in personal care products, which is 5 parts per million.Read More
People are messy. So is nature. And what people do when nature unleashes its fury often makes things worse.
The staff at Environmental Working Group took a look at the major environmental news stories of the year and came up with two lists: the Top 10 Good News stories and the Top 10 Bad News stories.Read More
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics announced today that 321 cosmetics companies have met the goals of the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, the Campaign’s voluntary pledge to avoid chemicals banned by health agencies outside the U.S. and to fully disclose product ingredients – a pioneering practice in the cosmetics industry. An additional 111 companies made significant progress toward those goals.Read More
"Natural" and homemade cosmetics and cleaning products aren't by definition safer than mainstream products. EWG takes a closer look at two common plant-based ingredients - tea tree and lavender oils - and finds that the science is still evolving and safety can't be assumed. First of a two-part blog on health concerns tied to natural ingredients. Part one of a two-part blog series.Read More
Did you know that your cosmetics could harm your health? Your makeup is probably laden with dangerous chemical ingredients that could potentially cause long-term damage. Are you having trouble getting rid of old cosmetics you don't use anymore? Do you find yourself buying the same unhealthy products every time you go to the store? Here are some tips to help you start buying safer and healthier productsRead More
Hey teens! We know you probably wear make-up and use cosmetics everyday, but do you have any idea what's inside these products? Many personal care products may include dangerous chemicals that can build-up inside your body and pose risks to your health.Read More
EWG's 2011 Teen Ambassadors interview other teens to find out how much they know about ingredients in their cosmetics - and share some shocking findings about the safety of make-up and personal care products.Read More
The mainstream cosmetics industry has, for the first time, declared formaldehyde unsafe at any level in hair straighteners.Read More
Environmental Working Group issued the following statement this afternoon in response to the federal Food and Drug Administration’s warning to Brazilian Blowout that the company’s product containing carcinogenic formaldehyde is “adulterated” and “misbranded.”Read More
Most people are - by now - well aware that overexposure to formaldehyde is unsafe. From the FEMA trailer fiasco (remember Katrina?) to the Obama administration's recent decision to classify formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen, it's hard to not know you should avoid formaldehyde-laced products.Read More
New sunscreen rules will do away with the worst hype in sunscreen marketing. But they don't address concerns about ingredient safety, particularly a form of vitamin A which has become common in sunscreen and other skin products.Read More
Since releasing our 2011 Sunscreen Guide in May, Environmental Working Group has received dozens of requests from supporters and companies asking us to add more of their favorite products.Read More
Skin Deep boasts a new look today, featuring smoother navigation, easier search functions and additional tips for consumers looking for information on the ingredients in their soap, deodorant, toothpaste and countless other personal care products.Read More