Study finds asbestos in Claire's makeup products marketed to teens

Credit: CBS News

NEW YORK (CBS) -- Testing performed by a consumer watchdog group discovered asbestos in three products marketed to teens by the makeup company Claire's, just weeks after the company pulled products from shelves after receiving customer complaints.

The U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG), a non-profit group, told CBS News they commissioned tests of 15 makeup products containing talc from an "accredited laboratory," including four from Claire's. Three of the Claire's products reportedly contained "high levels of asbestos," the group claimed.

Talc is a material commonly found in makeup that can be contaminated with asbestos, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

In a statement, Claire's told CBS News it "categorically denies" the test results, calling the lab's methods "obsolete and unreliable." The chain said it has conducted its own "extensive testing" and found "that Claire's products are asbestos-free and comply with all relevant safety regulations." PIRG said it stands by the testing procedure.

The company added: "All our powder-based cosmetics use the same base formulation, utilizing Merck certified asbestos-free talc, which is the same talc used in other well-known cosmetic brands."

In December, Claire's pulled multiple products marketed to children from shelves over concerns of asbestos contamination. It later said the initial tests found no trace of asbestos in the items.