Upon getting ready for school this morning, my 12 year old daughter informed me that her mascara was made with monkey eyeballs.
I heard that mascara was made with crushed glass in it.
The Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association offers these safety tips on mascara use:
Rumors about icky or even dangerous substances lurking in ordinary household and personal products are our way of voicing that sense of disquiet, thus we fret that
The “bat poop” rumor isn’t the only one we’ve heard about mascara, even though it is the most prevalent. Such rumors include the following:
Don’t use old containers of eye cosmetics. Discard mascara three months after purchase.
Origins: One of the less appetizing aspects of modern life is having to entrust our personal safety and wellbeing to those responsible for churning out household and personal care items. Precious little of the process of bringing these items to market is transparent, and the products that end up in our hands arrive emblazoned with lengthy lists of polysyllabic ingredients that make the task of working out exactly what went into them almost impossible. Ultimately, we have to cross our fingers and hope that the manufacturers have done right by us. But even so, there is always that little nagging sense that all might not be entirely well with many of the items we use on a daily basis.
Mascara contains the crystalline form of guanine, a word that derives from the Spanish word guano, meaning “dung.” Guanine is used extensively in the cosmetics industry, where it functions as a colorant and as an opacifying (shimmering or light diffusing) agent. It’s found in bath products, cleansing products, fragrances, hair conditioners, lipsticks, nail products, shampoos and skin care products. The crystalline guanine used in beauty products doesn’t derive from excrement, though, either from bats or from any other critter. Yet there is a bit of a “yuck!” factor to that ingredient, as guanine is manufactured from fish scales, which means you’re likely finding a little bit of Nemo in your cosmetics drawer.
Bat poop or not, mascara can be a dangerous beautifier if handled carelessly. Application problems routinely cause the product to end up in the eyes of users as well as on their lashes, resulting in numerous emergency room visits (2,390 in 1983, for example). Among the mishaps that bring people into the ER with mascara-related injuries are slips of the applicator, which can injure or irritate the eye, sometimes resulting in infection. Bacterial contamination of the product also can represent a danger. In extreme cases, dermatologists report, mascara has caused allergic reactions or inflammation of the conjunctiva, the mucous membrane lining the eyelids.
Is bat guano used in the manufacture of mascara?
The good news is that the whole bat poop in mascara thing is really just a massive urban legend.
There are several cheaper alternatives like synthetic pearl, mica, aluminum, and bronze particles.
With all the fabulous things that guano does, what is the benefit of putting it in mascara… or even other makeup products?
Last but not least, guano was used in various wars, including the US Civil War since nitrogen can be extracted from guano to make explosives.
In the ancient Inca civilization, it was even used as a form of currency, since its ownership was quite the privilege.
Guano is used as a very effective fertilizer around the world. Rich in bioremediation microbes and nitrogen, it contributes to strong plant growth, soil building, and the cleansing of toxins from the soil.
Mascara is typically made of wax, oils, pigments, and preservatives.
Although you may have heard that there is bat guano in mascara, that’s really just a wide-spread urban legend.
👉🏼 Bats are actually flying mammals that can maneuver better than birds… thanks to their highly articulated wings. They are commonly mistaken for rodents.
Have you ever heard that there is bat poop in mascara? Some of the commonly-used makeup ingredients just might shock you…