Make-Up From Tween Retailer Justice Found To Contain Asbestos

Make-Up From Tween Retailer Justice Found To Contain Asbestos

Parents with young daughters like me have most likely been dragged into Justice, a popular retail store for girls and teens selling bright colored clothing, flavor-of-the-month trinkets and stuffed animals, costume jewelry and make-up. But a recent investigation by an ABC News affiliate reveals that all that glitters at Justice is far from gold.  

Scientific testing undertaken as part of the ABC investigation alarmingly demonstrated that Justice’s “Just Shine Shimmer Powder” make-up contains four heavy metals, including lead, in the makeup that can be toxic to humans in sufficient doses. However, perhaps the most troubling finding was that the "Just Shine Shimmer Powder" also contains significant quantities of asbestos! Lead researcher Sean Fitzgerald commented, "I would treat [this make-up] like a deadly poison, because it is."

Indeed, asbestos is known to cause certain types of terminal cancers in all humans and is dangerous for anyone to consume. Asbestos-caused diseases can take decades to develop and once the fibers get into the lungs or body, they remain permanently, altering the cellular make-up of the human body. There is no recognized safe exposure level. As Fitzgerald correctly recognized, "[i]n this powder designed for children, they could die an untimely death in their thirties or forties because of the exposure to asbestos in this product."  

Asbestos contamination of cosmetic products has been a long-running concern in this country, because these products typically contain talc. Because talc is dug from the ground, it can keep some very hazardous company - namely asbestos, which is often intermingled with talc. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has long been concerned about asbestos contamination of cosmetic talc, but has allowed the manufacturing industry to self-police potential asbestos contamination. This decision has proven problematic since the U.S. imports large volumes of talc from countries, like China and Pakistan - two of the biggest suppliers, with notoriously lax safety regulation. As with most other imports, no government agency keeps track of who buys the talc, or how it is used.

And these are precisely the circumstances that have likely resulted in an untold number of young girls being exposed to possible asbestos contamination from the Just Shine Shimmer Powder. Justice targets that age group where girls start to experiment with make-up, and in my experience, that is a stage where girls tend to overapply and use a lot of make-up because it’s fun to apply and play grown up. Arguably this demographic is among the greatest at risk for asbestos exposure from cosmetics.  For Justice to allow this product to be sold in its stores, apparently, without taking any steps to determine that it was safe for the young girls to whom it was marketed is deplorable.  Justice has since pulled the product from its shelves, but it remains to be seen just how many people were unwittingly exposed. 

If you have this product in your home, please contain and dispose of it, and please help spread the word to other parents and children in your networks. 


Parents with young daughters like me have most likely been dragged into Justice, a popular retail store for girls and teens selling bright colored clothing, flavor-of-the-month trinkets and stuffed animals, costume jewelry and make-up. But a recent investigation by an ABC News affiliate reveals that all that glitters at Justice is far from gold.