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Wearing lipstick can be dangerous for your health. Know how

Published on:29 July 2021, 10:12am IST
Most women love wearing lipsticks, and for good reason. But the burning question is ‘are they good for you’? On this Lipstick Day, we’ll tell you all about why you must regulate the use of lipsticks, because they could have potentially harmful side-effects. Read on to know more.
Geetika Sachdev
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World Lipstick Day
Here’s why you should not use lipsticks frequently. Image courtesy: Unsplash
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Lipsticks are truly a woman’s best friend, or that’s what most of us have been made to believe! They instantly add colour to your face, and make you look ravishing within minutes. Let’s just say they work as the perfect pick-me-up, but are they good for you? Yes ladies, most of us have barely paid attention to this fact. After all, there has to be a reason why these long-lasting lipsticks stay on for SO long? Or why is it that the colours are so perfect? 

These are some pertinent questions, and we’re here to tell you all. A study by the Berkeley School of Public Health at the University of California revealed that most lip glosses and lipsticks available today contain harmful levels of chromium, lead, aluminium, cadmium and several other toxic materials. 

What’s more, the study also noted that continuous exposure to these levels could lead to a long-term health issue, especially in those people who apply lipstick more than two to three times in a 24-hour period. And with regular use comes the risk of receiving excessive amounts of chromium, which is linked to the occurrence of abdominal tumors. 

World Lipstick Day
Trust on remedies for luscious lips. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Here are some other toxic substances found in lipsticks: 
  • Phthalates are harmful for the endocrine system. 
  • The presence of lead causes several long-term health risks. 
  • Polyethylene glycols are also present in cream-based products, and pose health hazards for your nervous system. 
  • Parabens are commonly found in lipstick and can easily penetrate into the skin. They are known to cause several side-effects, including depression and diarrhea. 
These are the 5 ways in which lipsticks can harm you:

1. They cause toxicity in the body

By now we know the number of toxic ingredients in lipsticks, so it’s highly likely that your body will absorb these toxicities. In fact, without even realising, women sometimes ingest these materials. Always look at the ingredients before you buy lipsticks. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

2. They are the cause of several skin allergies

Have you found yourself with a sudden rash on your lips or itchiness around the lip area? Well, now you know why! That’s because lipsticks have a chemical called bismuth oxychloride for preservation. This ingredient is carcinogenic, so beware!

3. They can even cause cancer

No, we are not kidding! Since most of the ingredients are carcinogenic in nature, the likelihood of getting cancer from lipsticks is high. In fact, the chemicals used to preserve lipsticks cause several health issues like coughing, eye irritation, wheezing and other allergies. In extreme cases, cancer can happen.

World Lipstick Day
Yes, wearing lipstick can be dangerous. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

4. They cause changes in the endocrine system

For the unversed, lipsticks contain petrochemicals, which can cause major changes in the endocrine system. And if that happens, your body undergoes several issues in your cognitive and reproductive abilities.

5. They could cause renal failure

In extreme cases, renal failure can also happen, as a consequence of using lipsticks regularly. This is because of the large quantities of cadmium present in lipsticks. Stomach tumours are also another issue that can happen, due to the presence of this toxic chemical.

World Lipstick Day
Give lipstick a skip if you want to protect your gut health. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Here’s what you need to keep in mind
  • Dark coloured lipsticks have a higher content of these toxic chemicals
  • Always apply petroleum jelly before applying the lipstick. It can provide your lips with a layer of protection and minimise the damage 
  • Try and go for toxin-free or natural lipsticks
  • Avoid wearing lipsticks during pregnancy. They can also cause miscarriage, when ingested 
  • Do not wear lipsticks for more than 2-3 times a week

Geetika Sachdev Geetika Sachdev

An independent writer and journalist, Geetika loves sharp and fresh humour, just like her coffee! If not writing, you'll find her cafe-hopping and raiding the best book stores in town.