Taking It on the Chin

Taking It on the Chin
Taking It on the Chin

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Petition for national screening to identify mutagens, carcinogens, and endocrine disruptors and support efforts to develop a proactive national chemicals policy that evaluates chemicals and substitutes.
Take inspiration from REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals), the European Commission’s law on the safe use of chemicals. REACH places the onus on industry to generate safety data on chemicals and to identify the measures needed to manage the risks.

In its Household Products Study, Silent Spring Institute researchers found that some alternative products that did not contain well-known phthalates still contained other phthalates that were also endocrine disruptors. These less-studied phthalates included dicyclohexyl phthalate (DCP), diisononyl phthalate (DINP), and di-n-propyl phthalate (DPP).

The alternative shaving cream tested, for example, contained five different phthalates, illustrating the potential for simultaneous exposures to multiple phthalates, which act cumulatively on endocrine targets. None of the products tested—including personal care products requiring the disclosure of intentional ingredients—listed “phthalate” on the label.

The scientists believe these results suggest that manufacturers have replaced worrisome chemicals that are regulated or have been the targets of consumer campaigns with substitutes that are no better.