These Are The Most Toxic Beauty Products Marketed To Black Women

beauty products

This past spring, we learned that most products marketed to black women are more toxic – and less tested — than other products on the market. Their harsh chemicals come with major consequences, including early onset puberty as well as respiratory and reproductive issues. This is extremely alarming as Black women spend nearly $8 billion annually in the beauty arena, dishing out 80 to 100% more on hair and beauty than the general public.

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Now a new study is naming names. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) recently tested 1,177 beauty products marketed to black women finding that one in 12 are highly hazardous to our health. Less than 25 percent scored low in potentially hazardous ingredients, compared to 40 percent of products marketed to the general public.

EWG’s Skin Deep Database ranked products on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the lowest, based on more than 60 toxicity and regulatory databases and scientific studies.

The worst products included hair relaxers and coloring and bleaching products. “Even the products that market themselves as ‘no lye’ have other ingredients that are also hazardous and could cause chemical burns,” says study co-author Paul Pestano, an EWG senior database analyst. In fact, none of those categories along with lipsticks, and concealers, foundations and sun-protective makeup scored as “low hazard”.

If you’re wondering how your beauty fave scored, head on over to for a completed list of tested products.

About The Author

Stephenetta (isis) Harmon

isis is digital media director for Hype Hair and founder/Black beauty director for Sadiaa Black Beauty guide, the top hair and beauty directory for women of color.