There's nothing like finding out that your baby's bubble bath has cancer-causing agents in it to scare a mom shitless and make her madder than hell.
Well, I am officially pissed off. Because, apparently, I've been using carcinogenic shampoo on my son since he was an infant. Thank you, Johnson and Johnson.
From the press release:
Laboratory tests released today revealed the presence of 1,4-Dioxane in products such as Hello Kitty Bubble Bath, Huggies Baby Wash, Johnson’s Baby Wash, Scooby-Doo Bubble Bath and Sesame Street Bubble Bath. The tests also found the carcinogen in Clairol Herbal Essences shampoo, Olay Complete Body Wash and many other personal care products....“Regrettably, 1,4-Dioxane contamination is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Jeanne Rizzo, R.N., executive director of the Breast Cancer Fund, a founding member of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. “Because the FDA does not require cosmetics products to be approved as safe before they are sold, companies can put unlimited amounts of toxic chemicals in cosmetics.”
Everyone can now join me in a collective, What the fuck??
I'm sorry, but how is it that the ingredients in our cosmetics products (which include shampoo, body lotion, make-up, bubble bath, hair gel, nail polish, moisturizer, sunscreen and like a bazillion other products) ARE NOT REVIEWED OR REGULATED FOR SAFETY BY OUR GOVERNMENT BEFORE BEING SOLD TO THE PUBLIC?
I mean, is this a joke?
What is happening in this country when we are allowing our children to be put at risk like this?
Where is the uproar?
Because things just seem to be getting out of control. I feel like we live in a completely toxic environment. Everywhere we turn, we are finding out that what we touch, breathe, eat, and play with can literally kill us.
Use Hello Kitty Bubble Bath on your kid for the last five years? Watch out for cancer!
Just bought a Sesame Street Shape Sorter or a Birthday Dora? Watch out for lead poisoning!
Happen to live near fields where farmers are using pesticides? Hello autism.
Use a laser printer at work? You might as well be smoking cigarettes.
(That is, unless you ask a manufacturer of laser printers-
in which case, they're perfectly safe.)
Plan to take your kids on a cross-country trip in your new RV? Might want to think twice. You could be embalmed in it.
I mean, is nothing safe anymore?
I don't know about you, but I've had enough. I feel like we're sitting ducks - unable to truly know what is and isn't safe anymore. I feel like our government isn't being tough enough with its product regulations to keep our children safe. Yeah, I know I'm taking the cynical view, and perhaps the cliched view, that money talks and that governments are often beholden more to big business than to the public they are supposed to serve. And that they look the other way sometimes - or a lot of times - even when they know something isn't right.
That is, until some non-profit or university has the funding and the balls to investigate an issue on their own and then the shit hits the fan and then
the government has to act.
But by then my kid has been sucking on his Made-in-China lead-laden stacking rings and bathing in toxic bubble bath for two years.
And it makes me feel helpless. And pissed off. And helpless.
Because I realize that I can't protect my children from everything. And somehow, lately, it seems like everything is what they need protection from.
Edited to add: Click here
for Part II of this post, which discusses the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Database - a quick and easy online tool you can use to help determine whether your family's body products (sunscreens, lotions, shampoos, toothpaste etc.) are toxic or not. Or just go straight to the database and start searching now. You can find it here.