This article explores these lax regulatory efforts and their connection to risk assessment, and proposes changes to our current toxics regulatory paradigm. Part I of this article explores our current regulatory approach for consumer cosmetics. Part II discusses the specific and dire concerns regarding chemicals that are suspected carcinogens and those suspected of disrupting the human endocrine system. The article argues in Part III that because the framework for our current regulation of consumer cosmetic products is not designed to be protective of human health, our regulatory paradigm must shift dramatically in the future if this is to become our true goal. Part IV of the article compares our federal efforts to regulate toxic substances in cosmetics with those in other developed countries and at the state level in the United States. This section concludes that we lag far behind in our health protective regulatory efforts relative to other jurisdictions. If we are to make the protection of human health a fundamental goal of our toxics regulatory system and specifically, our cosmetic product regulation, we must change our normative goals and operate from a more precautionary stance. In Part V, the article reviews past and current federal legislative proposals regarding cosmetic regulation, and makes suggestions on how the current proposal could be strengthened to make U.S. cosmetics safer, and have a greater potential to protect human health.
Recommended CitationValerie J. Watnick, The Missing Link: U.S. Regulation of Consumer Cosmetic Products to Protect Human Health and the Environment, 31 Pace Envtl. L. Rev. 595 (2014)
Available at: https://digitalcommons.pace.edu/pelr/vol31/iss3/1