Registration Deadline: Wednesday, June 24 at 5 p ET. Registrants will receive an email with the Zoom link and password on Thursday morning. 

ZOOM EVENT: ADAO’s Clean and Toxic-Free Beauty Conversation with BeautyCounter, Breast Cancer Prevention Partners, and Breast Cancer Survivor

Posted on June 23, 2020

In honor of the 82nd anniversary of the first and only federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act, ADAO will host a virtual meeting to discuss Clean and Toxic-Free Beauty this Thursday, June 25th, at 2:00pm ET. 

The Act was intended to protect consumers from toxic cosmetic products. During our conversation, we will focus on clean beauty, consumer culture, legislative grassroots action, how to vote with your dollars, how to stay safe from toxic products, and more.

I will be joined by:

Tainted cosmetics largely impact already marginalized communities and vulnerable populations, including Black women, members of the LGBTQ community, those with health issues, and children. However, cosmetics are used by everyone in our society — people of all genders, ages, and backgrounds — leaving us all vulnerable to asbestos contamination in these products.  

For example, asbestos has been found in make-up and Johnson & Johnson baby powder. Sadly, according to Reuters, “J&J, meanwhile, looked for ways to sell more Baby Powder to two key groups of longtime users: African-American and overweight women.” Just last year, the FDA discovered asbestos in several makeup products sold at the tween retailers Claire’s and Justice and issued a press release warning the public of the danger. 

As a result of the FDA’s findings, Claire’s issued a voluntary recall of the contaminated products, but the FDA pointed out problems with the current regulatory system wherein cosmetics aren’t required to be tested for safety before hitting the shelves.

Consumers face a huge battle in purchasing clean and toxic-free cosmetics, personal care products, toys, paint, and other products often contaminated with asbestos. However, there is also a challenge in how to regulate asbestos and asbestos-contaminated talc. While the FDA is responsible for cosmetics, personal care products, the EPA is responsible for consumer products, toys, structures, and our environment. 

There is good news on the horizon. There are multiple bills in Congress right now to better regulate cosmetic and personal care products. U.S. Representatives Frank Pallone of New Jersey,  Debbie Dingell of Michigan and Jan Schakowsky of Illinois, have legislation to help consumers know what they are buying and to require cosmetic manufacturers to provide ingredient statements to help prevent toxic exposures. Chairman Pallone’s “Cosmetic Safety Enhancement Act of 2019” H.R.5279 will amend the 1938 Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to improve cosmetic safety, and for other purposes. 

Chairman Pallone said of the bill, “As this industry continues to grow, it is more important than ever that we ensure consumers are safe and have confidence in the products they use every day.”

Meanwhile in California, the Toxic-Free Cosmetics Act (AB 2762), was introduced by State Assembly Members Al Muratsuchi and Buffy Wicks unanimously passed the Assembly.  Their bill would actually make it a crime to sell cosmetics contaminated with asbestos, lead, and a number of other toxins. 

It is long past time that Congress pass these bills to protect Americans everywhere. We need to vote with our dollars and buy clean beauty products. But we also need to vote at the ballot box and pass bills that make it easier for everyone, especially those in vulnerable populations, to get access to these safe, clean products. We hope you’ll join us at 2pm to talk about how to safeguard the public health of all Americans. 

Together we can make a difference. 

Linda Reinstein
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