Lipstick is a necessity for ladies. With a shade of red on lips, a woman can have the world at her feet. The safety of lipsticks affects the life of the queen and must not be taken lightly!
To find out the truth, Test-it™ selected 31 most popular lipstick products in the market and joined hands with a professional laboratory to perform safety test using the world leading bio-testing technology Testing 2.0. Based on the test results, it rated 23 products as Green Fish (Excellent), 3 products as Yellow Fish (Basic) and 5 products as Red Fish (Sub-optimal).
Test-it™ finds that safer lipsticks cost less. In terms of brand origin, samples produced in Asia have better safety performance than those produced in Europe and America.
According to the World Health Organization and United Nations, choosing the wrong product could cause cancers, infertility, precocious puberty, obesity and neurological disorders. Test-it™ provides clear, direct test reports with lifestyle tips. Equipped with scientific and objective information, consumers can make safer purchasing choices. Stay tuned for more interesting facts.
Interesting Facts of Milk
Findings of Test-it™
Lipsticks under the test mainly include Asian brands, European brands and American brands.
All 6 samples of Asian brands pass the test and are rated as Green Fish.
A total of 14 samples of European brands are selected, with 10 (71%) rated as Green Fish and 4 (29%) rated as Red Fish.
For the 11 American brands selected, 7 (64%) samples are rated as Green Fish, 3 (27%) samples are rated as Yellow Fish and 1 (9%) samples are rated as Red Fish;
Test-it™ finds that, in terms of “brand origin”, all samples of Asian brands pass the bio-test and are rated excellent, meaning that they are safer than samples of European and American brands.
Samples are classified into high-priced, mid-priced and low-priced ones and the results are as follows:
Among the 31 samples tested, the most expensive one costs 210.5HKD/g, which is over 9 times of the cheapest one that costs 22.9HKD/g. The average price was 62.3HKD/g.
Test-it™ finds that, over 50% of samples in each of the price ranges, namely the low-priced, mid-priced and high-priced categories, passed the safety test. It is worth mentioning that, over 80% of low-priced samples are rated Green Fish and have better safety performance.
84% of genes known to be associated with human diseases have a zebrafish counterpart. Therefore, substances that are toxic to zebrafish embryos are likely to be toxic to human. When exposed to toxic substances, fish embryos develop abnormalities, such as head tumour, tail tumour, heart swelling and even immediate death in serious condition.
Test-it finds that 3 (10%) samples could not pass the acute toxicity test.
The acute toxicity of an European lipstick sample exceeds the safety standard by around 17 times as compared to products of the same category in Test-it’s bio-database.
【Lipstick Fact】 Lipsticks “sweat” when stored at 36℃ or above. In terms of chemical composition, the simpler the formula, the sweatier the lipstick will be. Some manufacturers may add gelling agents to lipsticks to prevent “sweating”.
Most products contain various chemical substances, such as solvents for blending different ingredients, main ingredients of lipstick like colorings, paraffin, emulsifiers and fragrances. Substandard chemical ingredients and chemical reaction resulting from the mixing of ingredients may impair the quality of lipsticks and increase toxicity.
Samples were also examined using the transgenic fish embryos technology to test for chronic toxicity. When chronic toxicants (estrogenic endocrine disruptors) are detected, embryos emit green florescence light in various luminous intensity, which can be used to quantify toxicants, enabling evaluation of human health risks according to WHO/FAO guideline.
In chronic toxicity test, 5 (16%) samples could not pass the test.
Test-it™ found various preservatives in the samples, such as the widely applied butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) in 12 samples and paraben preservatives in 2 sample.
The same European lipstick sample aforementioned shows high level of toxicity in chronic toxicity test whereby all tested fish embryos were dead.
Scientific studies show that these estrogenic endocrine disruptors can be readily absorbed by the body and are found in breast milk, breast tissue, cord blood and placentae. In other words, they can be passed to the next generation.
When applying lipstick, it is inevitable for it to have direct contact with saliva. Comparing with other cosmetics, lipsticks are smaller but more susceptible to contamination. In order to prevent deterioration and slow down oxidation, manufacturers often add preservatives to extend the shelf life.
Lipsticks should not be stored at high temperature and humidity. Places next to a lamp or inside a bathroom or toilet should be avoided so as to prevent contact with germs which may accelerate deterioration. In addition, lip brushes are a good option for applying lipstick as it minimizes saliva on the lipstick and bacterial growth.
Test-it™ recommends consumers to search for all safe, non-toxic and quality lipsticks through “Test-it™ Search” on the Test-itTM official website (http://w2.fishqc.net) before purchases.
If you doubt if this works, why not give it a try? You will be surprised by this little trick. You will also be astonished if you use this technique for color blending. Just repeat the steps and use different colors when applying the second layer of lipstick.
Conventional chemical test 1.0 and the basic regulations only reflects the basic requirement for a product’s market entry. The mission of Test-it™ is to further improve product safety with world leading technology Testing 2.0. Though horizontal analysis in similar products, Test-it™ provides consumers with information and data for better consumer choices. Products are categorised as Green Fish, Yellow Fish and Red Fish according to test results.
Test-it™ has developed a high standard as a third party consumer goods evaluation platform. Developed by an experienced research and development team and an advisory board of toxicology experts from 12 countries, Test-it™ references from the global standard of China, EU, the U.S., Japan, WHO and OECD. With the application of fish embryo toxicity (FET) test technology (Testing 2.0), The standard of Test-it™ could be higher than the existing regulations.
Market research and product
Test-it™ selected 31 best selling lip stick products by analysing sales and attention span from the Test-it™ fans group. The research is conducted in both e-commerce platform and physical store.
Purchasing Method and Channel
All tested samples were purchased by Test-it as a common customer. Samples were purchased from the brands’ official beauty counters and their globally recognised sales channels ( official flagship stores ) on major E-commerce platforms ( JD, Tmall, Koala, Amazon) . All sample were purchased anonymously.In order to maintain neutrality and objectiveness, Test-it reports will not accept products submitted by manufactures.
1、 Transgenic medaka embryo testing for chronic toxicants.
2、Zebrafish embryo testing for acute toxicants
Vitargent adopts an exclusive ingredients screening system comparing restricted and high risk ingredients regulated by the CODEX Alimentarius of the WHO&FAO, USFDA, EU, Food and Drug Administration of Japan and China to further enhance product safety.
Ingredient Screening: Products must not contain any chemicals that are associated with health complications, eco-toxicity, or contamination by scientific safety evaluations, or are banned by the following governmental agencies and authoritative bodies.
US: USFDA’s ‘Summary of colour additives for use in the United States in foods, drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices’, ‘Prohibited & Restricted Ingredients’, and 'Everything Added to Food in the United States (EAFUS)'.
EU: European Commission Nos. 1333/2008, 1223/2009, 1129/2011, and 1130/2011, and Candidate List of substances of very high concern for Authorisation (SVHC) by European Chemicals Agency (2017).
China: China FDA’s ‘Safety and Technical Standard for Cosmetics’ (2015), and 'National food safety standards: food additive standard (GB2760-2014).
Japan: Japan’s ‘Standards for Cosmetics’ (2000), and 'Standard for use of food additives (2017)
WHO&FAO: CODEX Alimentarius
Results Analyzing Method
|Category||Medaka embryo testing for chronic toxicants||Zebrafish embryo testing for acute toxicants||Ingredients check|
|Pass WHO guideline on Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI)||No LC50 (50% fish death) detected at highest concentration||No banned or high concernedingredients|
||Pass WHO guideline on Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI)||LC50 detected within highest centration to Vitargent category-based reference line||No banned but contain high concerned ingredients|
||Fail (reading exceed ADI or over 50% fish death at Vitargent category-based reference line )||LC50 detected below Vitargent category-based reference line||Contain banned ingredients|
|Hong Kong Technological Achievement Award(2014)||Davos Global Innovation Pioneer (2015)||Geneva International Inventions 43rd Grand Prix Winner (2015)||World Intellectual Property Organization Gold Medal (2016)||APEC & GIC Future Maker (2016)||Unreasonable Impact (2017)|