Some products you’d never expect to be recalled due to asbestos contamination — cosmetics for young kids might top that list. However, Claire’s Stores has been under scrutiny since 2017 when their products first tested positive for asbestos. Additional products tested positive since then, as recently as March 2019.
Even though cosmetics are regulated, they are not subjected to a clearance process by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The agency doesn’t approve cosmetics or their ingredients before they enter the market, nor does it require a public label if component ingredients contain asbestos. However, the FDA recently announced new plans to keep asbestos out of consumer products, including gathering information from companies on how they guarantee the minerals they use are free from asbestos.
Claire’s voluntarily recalled its makeup products and claims that the cosmetics are still safe according to Canadian and European safety regulations. The World Health Organization (WHO) says there is no safe level of asbestos exposure. Asbestos is banned in the European Union, Canada, and the U.K. In the United States, lobbying by asbestos suppliers continues to block efforts to ban the carcinogen. The WHO believes that eliminating asbestos-related diseases most efficiently requires an end of all asbestos use.
FDA Finds Cosmetics Could Lead to Asbestos Exposure
The FDA sent out an alert in March, warning consumers to avoid Claire’s and Beauty Plus Global cosmetics. Products from both companies tested positive for asbestos yet again. Claire’s removed the products from their stores and are offering a full refund for consumers who purchased the recalled cosmetics. The company removed all other talc-based products from their shelves and recently switched to talc-free manufacturing to prevent any future asbestos-contaminated cosmetics.
The Makeup/Asbestos Exposure Connection
The common link between cosmetic products, asbestos exposure, and mesothelioma is talc powder. Talc is a fine-grained mineral and a common ingredient in personal products like baby powder and cosmetics like eyeshadow and compact powder. Asbestos deposits can sometimes be found in the talc powder that is used in these personal products. Asbestos is a naturally occurring fibrous mineral that was commonly used for its insulating and fire-retardant properties. Asbestos fibers produce a fine dust that can settle at the bottom of the lungs if inhaled.
Inhaling the asbestos dust can cause malignant mesothelioma, lung cancer, and other asbestos-related diseases. These asbestos illnesses have a long latency of about 40 years. Malignant mesothelioma occurs when malignant cancer cells are found in the sac that surrounds the chest, abdominal cavity, or heart. The only known cause of this aggressive cancer is asbestos exposure.
Since the FDA does not have to approve cosmetics, when manufacturers do not effectively monitor their products, asbestos-contaminated personal products can end up in consumer homes. Asbestos exposure at a young age is especially dangerous because of the risk of asbestos-related disease occurring in the prime of the child’s adult life. People are typically much older when they begin to show symptoms. The average age of someone who is diagnosed with mesothelioma is 72 years old.
The link between asbestos exposure and deadly diseases has been known since the 1930s, but widespread use didn’t stop until the 1970s. Although asbestos is not as prevalent, it is still allowed for restricted use in the U.S. About 3,000 products may still be contaminated, leading to more asbestos exposure and victims of mesothelioma.
How We Help Victims of Asbestos Exposure
Seek justice with the help of our experienced asbestos attorneys. Our Dallas, Texas asbestos law firm has represented individuals like you affected by asbestos exposure for over 20 years, aggressively fighting the corporate giants responsible for their dangerous products. If you or a loved one were exposed to asbestos or suffer from a disease caused by asbestos like mesothelioma, we can help.