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All I want for Christmas is … EDC-Free gifts!

With the festive season approaching fast, many of us are stacking up on presents for our loved ones. Cosmetics and gaming consoles are surely a hit this year. But beware, the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals reports that these products contain a number of substances which are suspected to be endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).


Caption: Photo credit Anne Beck Christensen, Danish Consumer Council Think Chemicals

Many popstars market gift boxes with cosmetics to children, making these boxes popular gifts during the festive season. Yet, these boxes may contain hormone disrupting chemicals, also known as endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).

A test by EDC-Free Europe campaign partner the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals examined the ingredient lists on gift boxes which are targeted at children in their marketing. EDCs were found in every single gift box with cosmetics.

It is very unfortunate that all of the gift boxes we found in the stores contain substances which are suspected to be endocrine disrupting,” says Stine Müller, project manager in the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals. Hormone disrupting chemicals are suspected to cause several ailments such as declining semen quality in boys and too early puberty in girls.


Unwanted substances also found in controllers for gaming consoles

Another popular gift each year are gaming consoles. With new and popular games coming out all the time, gaming consoles are surely going to be high on the wish list of many children. However, the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals has found problematic chemicals in the controllers for these gaming consoles.


Caption: Photo credit Anne Beck Christensen, Danish Consumer Council Think Chemicals

The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals sent 12 popular gaming controllers for laboratory testing in order to examine the content of unwanted chemicals in popular joysticks. Two controllers receive the best mark for being without any problematic substances. Six receive an average mark because of traces of unwanted chemicals were found. Four controllers cannot be recommended by The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals. They get the lowest mark as they contain a number of chemicals which are suspected of being endocrine disrupting or cancer-causing, for example phthalates, flame retardants, chlorinated paraffins.

All test results for suspected EDCs in gift boxes and EDCs in gaming consoles are available on the website of the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals.

The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals is an initiative under the Danish Consumer Council that aims to help consumers avoid problematic chemicals when shopping. The Council tests consumer products in order to provide information on how to live a toxic free life. The Danish Consumer council THINK Chemicals is a partner of EDC-Free Europe, a coalition of public interest groups representing more than 70 environmental, health, women’s and consumer groups across Europe who share a concern about hormone disrupting chemicals (EDCs).


More information:

• The test results on EDCs in gift boxes can be read in the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals article titled ‘Gift boxes with cosmetics are a cocktail of problematic chemicals’.

• The test results on EDCs in gaming consoles can be read in the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals article titled ‘Unwanted substances in controllers for gaming consoles are not covered by toys legislation’.

• More information about the EDC-Free Europe coalition can be found online here.

Originally posted on 19 December 2016

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