Asbestos Found in Crayons, EWG Action Fund Reports

Asbestos Found in Crayons

In the latest edition of “What are manufacturers thinking, and why are they trying to kill our children?”, the Asbestos Nation campaign is reporting asbestos found in some brands of children’s crayons.

Sigh…

So here’s the deal: the EWG Action Fund (an investigative organization related to the Environmental Working Group), commissioned asbestos tests for some children’s products.

Big no-brainer, right? Total waste of money?

Nope. They totally found asbestos.

If your kid likes art or junior crime scene investigation, then get ready to freak out, because transmission electron microscopy, conducted first by Scientific Analytical Institute of Greensbororo, N.C., then by a second lab on just the positive results, uncovered asbestos in the following brands of crayons–

  • Amscan Crayons
  • Disney Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Crayons
  • Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Crayons
  • Saban’s Power Rangers Super Megaforce Crayons

–and in the fingerprinting powder of two children’s detective kits:

  • EduScience Deluxe Forensics Lab Kit
  • Inside Intelligence Secret Spy Kit

Of course, these aren’t great brands of crayons, and you probably don’t buy these brands for your own kids. In fact, I was relieved to note that the brands of crayons that I buy for my own kids–generally Crayola, or Lakeshore Learning–were confirmed as lacking asbestos.

However, if your kid ever does any art outside your own home–a restaurant with a kid’s menu and a coloring menu, say, or a day camp, or a crafts table at an outdoor festival–then she definitely encounters cheapo crayons there. Also, there are plenty of kids who use cheapo crayons as their primary art supply; they don’t need asbestos anymore than your own kid does.

I’m not generally an alarmist when it comes to children’s toys–you might remember that I threw a huge fit a few years ago, when the CPSC was considering draconian regulations that would have shut me and other indie crafters out of selling children’s products, and the bean bags that I sell in my etsy shop (thankfully, that CPSC measure didn’t go through!) simply carry the warning that you not, you know, cut them open and pour the contents onto a baby, because choking hazard.

However, I draw the line at harmful substances. We make our own temporary tattoos to avoid the heavy metal contamination that’s been found in some store-bought temporary tattoos. I buy my kids professional-quality face paint to avoid the same type of contamination that’s been found in Halloween make-up.

And now I’m going to have to be the mean mommy who also insists on checking the brand-name of restaurant crayons before I let my kids color their menus.

Photo credit: crayons image via Shutterstock

Written by Julie Finn

I'm a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I'm interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it's manifested--making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now.

Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life; my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties; and my for links to articles about poverty, educational politics, and this famous cat who lives in my neighborhood.

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