Dying to Die Your Hair?
Yes, it is 2017 and still, most of the cosmetic ingredients have not caught up with the scientific discoveries regarding the health and safety of certain compounds used commonly across the consumer market, especially when discussing pigmentation products (dyes).
Most people are aware that lead is a highly toxic metal to small children, however, lead is just as harmful to adults and can cause kidney damage and adverse neurological effects over time. After all, Toxicity is a factor of concentration of toxic substance over time; a higher dose in a smaller duration has a greater effect than a lower dose over a prolonged period.
The Canadian government banned lead acetate hair dyes in 2008, determining that their use could “result in the accumulation of potentially harmful body burdens of lead.” A group of health advocacy organizations which includes the Environmental Defense Fund, the Environmental Working Group, and the Breast Cancer Fund, among others, is asking the FDA to revisit a 1980 decision that allowed lead acetate to remain in hair dyes.
Greater advocacy and awareness is required especially as more dire examples of lead contamination -such as that in the flint Michigan water, remind us to remain vigilant regarding relaxed regulations and accountability in toxicty levels in public consumer products, especially those marketed and sold to under-represented consumers.