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What's on Your Face? Ten Most Toxic Cosmetics

By Courtney Dentch - 2011-12-02T19:43:15Z

Photograph by Richard Burbridge

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What's on Your Face?

The average American woman uses 12 health and beauty products every morning before leaving the house. But the brands women rely on to look their best may be hiding harsh chemicals that have been linked to cancer, organ failure and birth defects.

Cosmetics aren't subject to the same oversight as food and pharmaceuticals, according to the Food & Drug Administration. The FDA doesn't have the responsibility to approve new ingredients or issue safety recalls. It's up to the manufacturer to decide whether a product is safe.

The nonprofit Environmental Working Group ranks cosmetics containing chemicals with known or suspected health risks. The group considers each of the following brands to be "high hazard," based on information provided by the companies, the U.S. government and scientific studies.