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Cosmetic Use in Nigeria May Be Safe: A Human Health Risk Assessment of Metals and Metalloids in Some Common Brands

Journal of Cosmetic Science | Vol. 69 No. 6

Authored by Godwin Chukwuebuka Ajaezi, Cecilia Nwadiuto Amadi, Osazuwa Clinton Ekhator, Sorbari Igbiri and Orish Ebere Orisakwe 


Twenty different brands of cosmetic products were purchased from supermarkets in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria, with the aims to determine the levels of metals and assess the health risk to humans through long-term usage. The concentration of metals (arsenic, lead, mercury, cadmium, and nickel) in the cosmetic samples was measured with atomic absorption spectrophotometry after acid digestion. The concentration of metals in these brands of cosmetic studied ranged from As: 0.001–0.0161 mg\/kg, Pb: 0.289–2.873 mg\/kg, Hg: 0.001–0.0014 mg\/kg, Cd: 0.001–0.334 mg\/kg, and Ni: 0.007–2.748 mg\/kg. The metal and metalloid contents were less than the regulatory limits set for both metal impurities and as color additives. The target hazard quotient, hazard index, and cancer risk were less than the acceptable limit, indicating a measure of safety. Cosmetics sold in Nigeria may not add to the body burden of metals and metalloids.


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