California Bans Chemicals In Beauty Products With A New Law

The Toxic Free Cosmetics Act officially bans 24 harmful chemicals in household beauty products (waterproof makeup, sunscreens, shampoos, hair straighteners, et al), including mercury, several types of formaldehyde, phthalates, parabens, and PFAS. Some of these chemicals you can find spelled out on beauty labels, but many actually sneak in under general fragrance, so they’re not always transparently outlined on ingredient lists—and thus, a bit more difficult to parse while browsing for beauty.

Under this new law, beauty products are prohibited from including any of these ingredients from the get-go. But that’s not all: “It will also allow the attorney general of California to require the halt of sale of products, as well as require products to be removed from the shelves,” Susan Little, senior advocate for California government affairs at the Environmental Working Group (EWG), has previously told mbg about the cosponsored bill. “That’s why the bill is so helpful.”