Avoid chemical tainted kisses this Valentine's Day; study shows lip products can be harmful

CoPIRG examined ingredients in lip products

DENVER – Prior to puckering up, a new warning released Wednesday found ingredients in some of our favorite lip products may be harmful.

The caution surrounding cosmetics comes from the United States Public Interest Research Group, U.S. PIRG. Researchers found that over a period of two years, someone who uses lip products often, can ingest one pound of harmful material.

“The average American woman puts something on their lips two and a half times a day; some people an upwards of 14 times a day,” Danny Katz told Denver7.

Katz is the CoPIRG director. Depending on what is in the product, Katz said each application could lead to a “chemical tainted kiss.”

“Those chemicals include parabens. It also includes something that’s labeled as parfum or fragrance, and that is really a catch-all that could be any one of 3,000 different chemicals,” he said.

U.S. PIRG linked those ingredients to cancer, reproductive and respiratory problems, and allergies.

Denver7 found Kim Imhoff, a clean cosmetic shopper, browsing at Aillea on Larimer Square. The store is just one of Denver’s clean beauty retailers.

“I come in here because the lipstick I buy is all natural,” Imhoff said. “You can basically eat it.”

She said the practice of clean eating led to this particular lipstick lifestyle of hers.

“I want to make sure what I’m putting on my lips is just as natural and good, too,” Imhoff said. “So, that if I, oh my gosh, were to ingest any of it, I don’t have gross things in my body.”

The warning isn’t specific to women. The study found 39 percent of men also used lip products.

Katz with CoPIRG said if that isn’t the case, chemical tainted kisses can be contagious.

He added, “It’s really important to know what you’re putting on your lips. Because what’s going on your lips is going to often times be ingested as well.”

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