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Natural Awakenings

Minnesota Rocks: No More Makeup with Mercury

Feb 01, 2008 03:00AM

The North Star State is pointing the way to safer beauty products with its ban on mercury in mascara and eye liner as well as other toiletries and fragrances. Minnesota is the first state to ban the mercury still added to some cosmetics as a preservative and germ killer. The Personal Care Council in Washington, D.C., maintains that the levels of mercury used in makeup are too small to cause health problems. But sponsoring lawmakers aver that any amount is unnecessary, especially since users are often unaware of the risk.

“Mercury does cause neurological damage to people even in tiny quantities. Every source of mercury adds to it,” says Minnesota Sen. John Marty, who sponsored the ban. “We wanted to make sure it wasn’t there.”

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