Keep Things Naturally Spooky with Kid-Safe Halloween Make-up

By Naturally Savvy

Halloween is right around the corner, and many of your ghouls and goblins will want to use face paint or make-up to enhance their costume. Unfortunately many of the ingredients in cosmetics—even those made for kids—can be downright scary. 

We've been investigating kids' cosmetics found at Toys "R" Us for a while and discovered many use highly toxic ingredients. These worrisome ingredients can be found in the store's tm! line of products alone:

Propylene Glycol
Propylene Glycol is a solvent produced through a process called ethoxylation. Ethoxylation produces a byproduct called 1,4 Dioxane, which is a carcinogen. Although 1,4 Dioxane is never listed in the ingredients since it is a byproduct of ethoxylation, it is nonetheless a harmful ingredient. The same is true for polyethylene glycol (PEG). Whenever you see the words “glycol” in the ingredients, put it back on the shelf.

One of the first things to look for in a product is the word “fragrance.” This is because all of the toxic ingredients that you’re looking to avoid can be added back into makeup and self care products hidden under the guise of the word fragrance. The fDA says that how you make a product smell is a trade secret that companies don’t have to disclose. To give you an idea, companies can use 300 or more ingredients to create the product, but on the label you will only see them written as the word “fragrance.” 

Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, and Propylparaben
Parabens are used to preserve various ingredients in products from going rancid. They are known carcinogens and endocrine disruptors. This particular product contains four different types of parabens – methylparaben, ethylparaben, butylparaben, and polyparaben – which is unfortunate and unnecessary since there are many other natural preservatives that companies can use in their place that are not harmful. However, the natural preservatives are more expensive so that’s why companies, like this Toys "R" Us private label brand, don’t use them. Companies do their best to keep the retail prices low so consumers will buy them, but at the end of the day, in this case, you get what you pay for – cheap ingredients and a highly toxic product.

Research studies have linked parabens to everything from mild skin irritation to neurological and respiratory toxicity, and cancer. 

Synthetic Dyes
These synthetic dyes are used to make the product look pretty. Many of these colorants are derived from coal tar and are possible carcinogens. Synthetic dyes are much less expensive than natural colorants, that’s why they’re often used in these low dollar makeup kits targeted toward our kids.

Read more about our Toys "R" Us investigation and petition here

It's not just children's cosmetic kits you need to watch out for. In 2009 the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics tested 10 face paints available in the US and discovered that all of them contained lead and six had high levels of skin allergens such as nickel, cobalt, and chromium. "Every Halloween we worry about the candy we're putting in our kids' mouths but nowadays, we need to worry about the face paint we're putting on our kids' faces," New York Senator Chuck Schumer said in a statement criticizing the FDA for not conducting tests on face paints, particularly those made in China, to make sure they don't contain toxic chemicals.

Some non-toxic options for this Halloween:

  • Use the same organic or natural make-up on your family that you use every day.  Lipstick, eyeliner, and eyeshadows can be used to create colorful designs and mixed with a white base for full coverage.

  • Natural Earth Paint has full-color make-up kits without the scary ingredients.

  • Check your local natural product store for inspiration.

  • Get DIY and make fake blood using ingredients you already have in your kitchen.

By Naturally Savvy| October 29, 2016
Categories:  Nest

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Naturally Savvy

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