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Cheap Makeup: Baggage Associated with the Easy Price Tags

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Noorjahan Sheikh, Editor

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Imagine finding a lipstick that is normally twenty dollars for three dollars on a website, such as wish.com or alieexpress.com. What about the ten dollar Kylie Jenner eyeshadow and lipstick set on Mercari? With the increasing popularity of websites like these, many people believe they are finding beauty product deals for a steal. China is known to make cheap knockoff products, such as “Michael Kors” purses, but who would expect them to create exact look-a-likes of high end makeup products. While these products are the doppelgangers of those found in Sephora, the difference is the ingredients. The makeup products in Sephora is very expensive due to the high quality ingredients. China uses cheap and harmful fillers to create their very own dupes. According to thetalkto.com, there are reports coming in from worldwide news outlets and the FBI who warn consumers about the dangers that these cheap knockoff products bring. In order to verify authenticity, Homeland Security recommends that the consumers read the labels and look for barcodes. Sometimes there may be a misspelling or the font may look off, indicating its authenticity.

Is the easy price tag worth the detrimental effects associated with it? These makeup products are very harmful, often containing toxic ingredients that are not worth it. According to the Daily Mail, counterfeit makeup products may have up to nineteen times of the legal limit of lead in them. If lead builds up in the human body over a period of a few months, it can lead to lead poisoning. Lead poisoning is not pleasant, as it causes joint and muscle pains, headaches, and even memory loss! If they are exposed to too much lead, pregnant women have a risk for miscarriages or premature birth. The Daily Mail decided to buy some counterfeit makeup products from eBay and tested them for ingredients. Their results were shocking: they found the element arsenic, which is toxic and can cause pain, shock, and even death. They found traces of arsenic are found in knockoff products like the Benefit Eye Bright pencil, Bare Minerals Mineral Veil foundation powder, and the Bad Gal lash mascara. Mercury is another dangerous element found in some makeup products. Mercury is a highly toxic element which causes harm to vital organs such as the heart and kidneys and also strongly affects the immune system, lung, and brain. Arsenic can cause muscle weakness, headaches, insomnia, and skin rashes. If it goes near the eyes, it can permanently damage the vision.

The companies that create these cheap makeup products do not care about quality; they only care about profit. The people who create this makeup products may sometimes mix up the ingredients that are needed to make the product without any care for the customers. The producers of cheap knockoff products do not have chemist teams that have degrees to make formulas for eyeshadow palettes and perfume. Due to the poor quality of these ingredients, some people report having allergic reactions. They will have reactions from chemical burns to skin rashes. Eye products have given the unsuspecting customers eye infections, and lip products have led to bruised lips. Other makeup products can inflame the eyes and lips, making them look like they have been injected.

These products do not have chemists behind them and they are not made under the same conditions and standards as the makeup it poses as. This fake stuff is made in back rooms, basements, and filthy factories that have zero quality control. Bacteria is everywhere, and it contaminates the products. The bacteria comes from the nasty filth of the location and from the unwashed, unsanitary hands of the workers. E. Coli is a dangerous bacteria that is commonly found in counterfeit makeup products. E. Coli can cause kidney failure, severe diarrhea, and anemia. It can even cause urinary tract infections. E. Coli spreads through fecal matter; it more commonly spreads through people not washing their hands after they had a bowel movement. Since there are no sanitary practices of these businesses, it is not surprising to find bacteria like these. Tests also have shown that there is a disgusting product found in many makeup products: rat feces. Although it is unclear if rat poop is added on purpose or due to filthy conditions, one thing for sure is that rat poop is horrifying. It contains bacteria and germs that no one would want to put near their face. When people have found out about the true ingredients in their makeup products, they are often shocked and repulsed. It is illegal to sell counterfeit makeup in the United States, but many continue to sell them anyways through apps such as Mercari and websites like Ebay.

When looking online for makeup, beware! If the prices are too low, then be cautious about its authenticity. Cheap makeup price tags are dangerous. Essentially customers are paying for dangerous elements and bacteria, not quality products. Be sure to search for the differences in authentic products and the cheap knockoffs. Remember to always look for a barcode. Knockoff products will have  fuzzy barcodes that cannot be scanned. Also look for serial numbers. Fakes have serial numbers on the boxes, but they never  have them on the actual item. While these knockoffs may look very similar to the products found in Sephora, they are made up of completely different ingredients. Although these products may look pretty, they are highly flawed.

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Cheap Makeup: Baggage Associated with the Easy Price Tags