Make-Up Malaise: Potentially Deadly Pathogens Found In Cosmetics

EnolaGaia

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#1
Selfies may be the most dramatically deadly form of vanity, but superbugs in your make-up kit may well pose the more common risk ...
The deadly superbugs lurking in more than nine in ten make-up bags

Superbugs including E. coli and Staphylococci have been found in more than nine out of ten in-use beauty products

The vast majority of in-use make-up products such as beauty blenders, mascara and lip gloss are contaminated with potentially life threatening superbugs, new research from Aston University published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology has revealed.

Make-up products used every day by millions of people in the UK are contaminated with potentially deadly bugs, such as E.coli and Staphylococci, because most are not being cleaned and are used far beyond their expiry dates, new research led by Dr Amreen Bashir and Professor Peter Lambert of Aston University's School of Life and Health Sciences has shown.

Bacteria that can cause illnesses ranging from skin infections to blood poisoning if used near eyes, mouth or cuts or grazes were found in nine out of ten of the products. This risk is amplified in immunocompromised people who are more likely to contract infections from opportunistic bacteria.

The relatively new beauty blenders -- sponges used to apply skin foundation products -- were found to have the highest levels of potentially harmful bacteria -- with the vast majority (93 per cent) not having ever been cleaned, despite more than two thirds (64 per cent) being dropped on the floor at some point during use. ...
FULL STORY: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/12/191202135705.htm
 

Min Bannister

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#3
All sounds a bit gross but if it were really a risk would we not have masses of women dropping dead from manky make-up?
 

EnolaGaia

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#4
All sounds a bit gross but if it were really a risk would we not have masses of women dropping dead from manky make-up?
Not necessarily. The issue highlighted in this research study has nothing to do with toxicity of the cosmetic products themselves, but rather their capability to serve as breeding grounds and delivery vectors for serious germs. As noted in the research paper, germs could easily enter the body if the cosmetics (or associated apparatus such as the sponge-like blender pads) were applied over breaks in the skin or into the eyes.
 

escargot

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#5
This is nothing new. Women's magazines regularly advise their readers to chuck out old cosmetics because of the danger of infection. I don't even use make-up and I still notice articles about it.
 

Min Bannister

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But I have never noticed any articles about women actually getting infections. If it was an actual problam, rather than just a theoretical one then surely the front covers of all the gossip mags would have photos of sad-faced women with headlines such as "Mascara Caused My Face To Fall Off" and all that?
 

kamalktk

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But I have never noticed any articles about women actually getting infections. If it was an actual problam, rather than just a theoretical one then surely the front covers of all the gossip mags would have photos of sad-faced women with headlines such as "Mascara Caused My Face To Fall Off" and all that?
Except make up companies are probably big advertisers on gossip rags so you can get those celebrity looks...
 

Min Bannister

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#9
Except make up companies are probably big advertisers on gossip rags so you can get those celebrity looks...
Well yes but surely if you actually do keep replacing your make-up because it has expired, then you are having to buy more make-up meaning more sales for the companies. I am just rather sceptical of this as I think it is a ploy for just that reason. Happy to be proved wrong though!
 

Min Bannister

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#10
Post-Brexit, UK consumers could be at even greater risk as they will no longer be protected by EU regulations and could find themselves purchasing more beauty products from the US -- for example -- where there are no regulatory requirements to put expiry dates on make-up packaging at all.
I have looked at my make-up, a mixture of French, UK and American brands and none of them have an expiry date. :thought:
 

escargot

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#12
But I have never noticed any articles about women actually getting infections. If it was an actual problam, rather than just a theoretical one then surely the front covers of all the gossip mags would have photos of sad-faced women with headlines such as "Mascara Caused My Face To Fall Off" and all that?
You'd think so, but perhaps there are vested interests?

Reminds me of the newsreaders in Robocop who look more and more shabby as they stop using the dangerous cosmetics.
 

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#13
There aren't much more details, though I think the face falling off part was an exaggeration. My colleague was just worried about the face paint she had herself bought for her kid.
 

EnolaGaia

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EnolaGaia

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This is nothing new. Women's magazines regularly advise their readers to chuck out old cosmetics because of the danger of infection. I don't even use make-up and I still notice articles about it.
Yes - it's not a new concern. I've found medical articles on the subject dating back at least two decades.

What's new about the article I originally posted is the recently-recognized inclusion of potentially life-threatening superbugs among the germs that can be transmitted via cosmetics and associated apparatus.
 

Min Bannister

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#17
Check the lipstick. Some of them can go off if kept for a long time. They go 'sweaty'.
Ewww! My most recent lipstick is only a couple of months old, is a UK brand and definitely has no expiry date.

I do clean my brushes by the way. That's just basic hygiene. I am going to try to find the original paper as I am not sure how they jump from "clean your applicators" to the expiry date thing, especially when there isn't one. Does anyone here have an item of make-up with an expiry date?

Here's an example - a case of staph-infection / cellulitis caused by dirty make-up brush ...
Ouch! I wonder where the bacteria actually came from and are they lying around elsewhere? Facecloths, towels? Hopefully people are washing these but I bet some don't..
 

escargot

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#19
Anyway, on t'BBC's Fake Britain programme just now (episode 8/10) there's an item on counterfeit cosmetics. Some contain poisonous ingredients. One young woman had hugely swollen lips after using a fake designer lip gloss, looked like massive burn blisters!
 

Min Bannister

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#20
I did read the paper and it was very interesting. It turns out that the expiry date is on a tiny symbol that looks like a pot with its lid half off and a number such as 12M. This is the number of months you have after the item is opened. I had no idea.

It does not however mention any superbugs. The article extrapolated that on its own which was naughty.
 
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