Study Finds Makeup ‘Testers’ Regularly Tainted By E. Coli, Staph & Herpes

Excerpt:

You know that sharing makeup is a no-no, and for good reason.

“If a woman has a cut on her lip and borrows lipstick from someone who has a cold sore, she’ll get a cold sore. You can pass herpes [the cold sore virus], conjunctivitis [pink eye] and all sorts of things through sharing makeup,” says Dr. Zein Obagi, a dermatologist based in Beverly Hills.

Now imagine sharing your makeup with a few thousand or so of your closest friends when you sample makeup in testers in stores. If you don’t insist on practicing safe hygiene, or insist that the workers behind the counter practice safe hygiene when they’re applying makeup to your skin, it can get ugly fast.

Dr. Elizabeth Brooks, a biological sciences professor at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, conducted a much-quoted two-year study on public makeup testers when she was with Rowan University in New Jersey about five years ago. “We went to department stores, specialty stores, drugstores — everywhere,” she says. Her researchers found staph, strep and even E. coli bacteria on makeup testers. “Wherever you see E. coli, you should just think ‘E. coli equals feces,’ ” Brooks says. “That means someone went to the bathroom, didn’t wash their hands and then stuck their fingers in that moisturizer.” Brooks says that when they tested the makeup on Saturdays — the day with the most traffic at cosmetic counters — the percentage of tainted makeup was 100%.

Read the full article here: LA Times Reports: Handle Those Store Makeup Testers With Care

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