Asbestos Found in Justice Stores' Makeup: What You Need to Know

Justice retail stores
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If you were already nervous about allowing your LOs to experiment with makeup, you might want to hold off before allowing them to buy highlighter at their favorite retail chain. A Greensboro, North Carolina ABC affiliate ran an investigation and conclusively found traces of asbestos in Justice's Just Shine Shimmer Powder. Sean Fitzgerald of the Scientific Analytical Institute in Greensboro told the station, "I would treat this like a deadly poison, because it is."


The asbestos was found in a contamination of talc, a common ingredient in many makeup products, and was probably the fault of a poor reserve where the talc was mined.

Fitzgerald noted, "Fibers like this get into your breathing zone, and when you inhale, these fibers can get into the lung and go to the very bottom of the lung and that is exactly where you have the greatest likelihood of asbestos to cause disease."

There are no obvious signs for asbestos poisoning, as symptoms can take up to 20 years to appear. 

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Since learning of the report, Justice has taken action and removed the Just Shine Shimmer Powder from its website, but it has not conclusively confirmed or denied if there was an asbestos contamination. 

In a statement given to WTVD, the company said:

"Justice is committed to the safety and integrity of our products. Upon receiving the inquiry from WTVD, we immediately began an independent investigation. We cannot speculate regarding the matter until we have more information. Nonetheless, out of an abundance of caution, we have stopped the sale of this product while we investigate."

Fitzgerald notes that the issue was "not necessarily the manufacturer," and that there was "no intent to put this in the talc." Whew for that! He goes on to stress that they "should've tested it and known that the talc source was contaminated with asbestos."

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According to the FDA, talc has been linked to a possible increase in the likeliness of breast cancer, and according to the CDC, talc miners were more likely to get lung cancer. Studies have also shown there may be a link between talc and ovarian cancer.  

That's certainly concerning when we're talking about an ingredient that's commonly found in both drugstore and luxury makeup brands -- not to mention talcum powder, which is commonly used on babies. 

If you are worried about talc (not to mention asbestos) in any of your beauty products, it's of course best to err on the side of caution. It's never worth the risk to poison yourself in the name of beauty. 

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