Beauty influencer Jaclyn Hill released a line of lipsticks last week that have consumers concerned. Twitter and Instagram erupted with photos of lipstick containing particles, grains, grit, and hair. Hill’s launch of the lipstick is not the first time influencers have released moldy or contaminated products.
Jaclyn Hill’s lipstick’s launched last week contained fibers, hair, and what appeared to be the beginning of mold spores forming on the products. The beauty influencer boasts nearly 6 million YouTube followers. Hundreds of people uploaded photos to Twitter and Instagram, sharing the disgusting items found in their newly purchased lipstick.
Contamination in makeup is a big deal. The United States Food and Drug Administration legally requires companies to ensure the products they put to market are safe for consumers. When new products enter containing biological contaminants, consumers are urged to report the issues to the FDA.
With so many complaints, Hill initially clapped back at them and accused them of lying. However, dozens of photos began infiltrating Twitter and Instagram that proved the problems were widespread. Hill responded by telling consumers that the hairs were related to the use of “cotton gloves” used during the quality assurance phase of production.
Hill is not the only influencer to have issues with their products. Jeffree Star launched a liquid velour lipstick a few years ago that had a huge problem with mold. Dozens of photos popped up online of blubbling and moldy lipstick.
Another influencer Emily Noel, had issues with mold developing on her pallette’s launched by Makeup Revolution. Several individuals posted photos of their eye shadow plates containing spores of mold.
“Self-made” billionaire Kylie Jenner has not been immune to backlash and product problems. At least 15 people reported that her makeup palette gave them headaches from the glue and scents used in the products.
Rather than reporting problems to the FDA, consumers are using social media to address the issues. However, the complaints on social media are not stopping unsafe products from entering the market.
One reason many of the products are developing mold is that the products do not contain necessary preservatives to stop mold from forming. Additionally, products that are stored improperly or not formulated correctly can result in the makeup developing contaminants like mold.
Since influencers are incapable of policing themselves, consumers need to report the issues to the FDA. Makeup safety is of the utmost concern to the government. No consumer should face health consequences for purchasing products that are deemed safe for use. Additionally, companies are legally responsible for ensuring their products are safe for use.
Reports to the FDA can ensure that the company’s making the products recall them from the market. Also, the complaints can enable the FDA to take legal action against the influencer for repeated issues with unsafe products.
Consumers that receive products that contain contaminants can complete a form on the FDA website here.
Reaching out to the company that sold the product is important, but the government needs to know about these problems.
Many influencers sell makeup “as-is” or as “all sales final,” which means that returns are not an option. In the case of contaminated products, consumers can file fraud complaints with their credit card companies to receive a refund. The credit card company can then chargeback the retailer to force them to pay back for the fraudulent product.
Consumers purchasing these products are not helpless. Using these above steps can enable the influencers to make changes and ensure products are safe. Never buy products that do not offer returns.
To ensure product safety makeup companies should use preservatives if their products contain water. Additionally, products should be stored properly to avoid overheating, which can lead to mold. For more about contaminants in makeup, visit the FDA.
For more information, watch my stream on quality issues with makeup:
*Katie Joy is a columnist and hosts Without A Crystal Ball on Patheos Non-Religious Channel. She writes articles on parenting, disability advocacy, debunking pseudoscience, atheism, and crimes against women and children.
She co-hosts the YouTube show, “The Smoking Nun,” with Kyle Curtis on The Non-Sequitur Channel. The show airs weekly and tackles pseudoscience, current events, and crime stories.
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