California becomes first US state to ban 24 toxic chemicals found in cosmetics

“Every day, Californians are exposed to hazardous chemicals hiding in their cosmetics and personal care products.”

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This week, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Toxic-Free Cosmetics Act which targets and bans two dozen toxic chemicals from cosmetics. California is the first state in the nation to create such a ban and will go into effect in 2025.

Mercury and formaldehyde, which have been linked to cancer, birth defects, hormone disruption, and other negative health impacts were among two of the chemicals banned. 

“Every day, Californians are exposed to hazardous chemicals hiding in their cosmetics and personal care products. Children, communities of color, and pregnant women are especially vulnerable to these ingredients, which are not actively regulated by the federal government. California is leading the nation by banning toxic ingredients from our cosmetics. This legislation will save lives and keep Californians and our environment safe,” said Newsom. 

According to EcoWatch, cosmetics regulations have not been significantly updated in the U.S. since 1938. Currently, the makers of beauty products do not have to register their products with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), supply the government with an ingredients list, follow safe manufacturing standards or report safety records, and any adverse health impacts.

Toxic ingredients are already banned in cosmetics and personal care products in the EU. The lack of regulation like this in the U.S. is definitely a health and environmental justice issue. Hopefully, other states or the federal government will join California’s decision. 

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