The FDA is cautioning parents about face paints for Halloween as “most of these products are completely safe, but there have been reports of adverse events and allergic reactions,” says Linda Katz, director of the FDA’s Office of Cosmetics and Color. This happened in the case of a Girl Scout event in Ohio in February, when 43 girls got red, bumpy rashes from face paint made by Shanghai Color Art Stationery Co. Ltd.
While the FDA does not regulate cosmetics and face paints, they do regulate the the colors used in them. Check to make sure that the colors in any face paints you already have are FDA approved. You can check the list here.
You also want to make sure that the face paints you use are lead free. Last Halloween, blogs reported finding packages of face paints that were clearly marked ‘this product contains lead’.
Fortunately, there are several natural face paint options you can pick up or make your own!
Nova Natural’s Face Pencils are non-toxic and made primarily of palm oil. 5 pencils for $16
Pink Quartz Minerals Stage and Halloween Makeup is non-toxic and made with vegan minerals. 4 colors for $17
For a DIY recipe at home – try this:
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- ½ tsp water
- ½ tsp all natural diaper rash cream or a cold cream
- 1-2 drops natural/ organic food coloring
In a small bowl, mix water and cornstarch. Add baby cream and food color and mix a bit more.
EDITED 10/24/09 - I was just at the store and picked up a pack of face paints, they had tons of parabens listed in them. Just another reason to buy natural or make your own!
EDITED 10/29/09 – Campaign for Safe Cosmetics tested 10 face paints and found ALL of them contained lead and several other heavy metals.