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Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi (Photo: Kevin Sanders for California Globe)

Bill That Bans Mercury, Other Chemicals In Makeup Passed By Assembly

California would become the first US state to have such a sweeping makeup chemicals ban

By Evan Symon, June 12, 2020 3:53 pm

On Thursday, the Assembly voted near unanimously to approve a bill that would ban 12 chemicals from being used in cosmetics in California, mirroring current European Union regulations.

Assembly Bill 2762, written by Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi (D-Torrance), would effectively ban dibutyl phthalate, diethylhexyl phthalate, formaldehyde, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, long chain PFAS chemicals, methylene glycol, mercury, paraformaldehyde, phenylenediamine, and quaternium-15 from being used in makeup and cosmetics in the state. AB 2762 further clarifies that cosmetic products that include the chemicals cannot be made, sold, delivered, or held within California borders and that any violation would fall under the Sherman Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Law.

While moving up in Assembly Committees, several objections were made by cosmetic companies and retailers over the January 1, 2022 start date of the ban. Fearing that this would not give manufacturers and retailers enough time, as well as having enough time to work shipping halts through online orders, AB 2762 was amended to give a three year delay. Should the bill be passed, the current date it would become law is January 1, 2025.

Assemblyman Muratsuchi wrote AB 2762 as a way to block toxic chemicals from products that would slip by many consumers who would not know if they were toxic or not.

“I want my daughter growing up in a state where I don’t have to examine the label, and be an expert toxicologist, to know the soaps, face creams and toothpastes that are safe for her to use,” stated Assemblyman Muratsuchi. “That’s why I introduced AB 2762 to get the most toxic chemicals out of the products we use on a daily basis.”

Consumer advocates and other supporters also applauded the passage in the Assembly.

“There is, and never was, any excuse for these chemicals to have been in anything we eat or put on our bodies,” said Angie Calderon, a consumer advocate who has helped in campaigns to remove lead in 5 states. “Most people I’ve talked with in California had already assumed they were banned already, but it’s clearly not the case.”

“It’s about time we banned them.”

AB 2762 has overall faced little opposition and has garnered bipartisan support, largely due to the dangers poised by the chemicals on consumers in California. The bill continued the trend on Thursday, with Assemblyman Bill Brough (R-Dana Point) being the lone dissenter in the 73-1 vote.

AB 2762, widely expected to have been passed by the Assembly before Thursday’s vote, now moves on to the Senate, where it will be heard in Senate Committees next week.

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Evan Symon
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