Halloween should be scary fun…not scary toxic! Here are a few tips for a safer Halloween – no matter how old you are.
Avoid Toxic Face Paint
Many children’s face paints can contain toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium, and more. Because contaminants like heavy metals aren’t required to be listed on labels, parents often have no way of knowing which face paints are safe. Check out this guide on the best and worst face paints – or get creative with costumes that don’t require face paint.
Be Careful with Glow Sticks & Glow-in-the-Dark Jewelry
Calls to Poison Centers regarding glow in the dark products increase dramatically around Halloween – especially with kids. Many of these glow in the dark items (the ones you have to crack to make the liquid inside glow) contain dibutyl phthalate, which is a hormone disruptor, among other chemicals. While the short-term effects of breaking open a glow stick are relatively minor – skin irritation, eye irritation, possible nausea after ingestion – the long term effects of this phthalate exposure are of concern. Take care to monitor your children’s use of glow sticks to ensure they’re not broken open.
Avoid Costumes and Masks made of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
Many children’s Halloween costumes and masks are made from PVC – the most toxic plastic on the planet. These products usually contain phthalates to make them flexible. Phthalates disrupt the hormone system and have been linked to adverse effects on reproduction and development, as well as asthma in children. Look for PVC-free costumes – or get crafty and make costumes yourself out of safer materials.