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Your Facial Scrub May Contain Millions of Plastic Particles

The findings appeared in the journal Marine Pollution Bulletin

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Facial scrub
Microplastics have been used to replace natural exfoliating materials in cosmetics and have been reported in a variety of products such as hand cleansers, soaps, toothpaste, shaving foam, bubble bath, sunscreen and shampoo. Pixabay
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Everyday cosmetic and cleaning products contain huge quantities of plastic particles, which are released in the environment and could be harmful to marine life, says a new study.

Almost 100,000 tiny ‘microbeads’ – each a fraction of a millimetre in diameter – could be released in every single application of certain products, such as facial scrubs, the findings showed.

“As the study unfolded I was really shocked to see the quantity of microplastics apparent in these everyday cosmetics,” said one of the lead researchers Imogen Napper of Plymouth University in England.

The particles are incorporated as bulking agents and abrasives, and because of their small size it is expected many will not be intercepted by conventional sewage treatment, and are so released into rivers and oceans.

This could result in up to 80 tonnes of unnecessary microplastic waste entering the sea every year from use of these cosmetics in Britain alone.

Body Scrub
Body Scrub. Pixabay

Microplastics have been used to replace natural exfoliating materials in cosmetics and have been reported in a variety of products such as hand cleansers, soaps, toothpaste, shaving foam, bubble bath, sunscreen and shampoo.

For this study, researchers chose brands of facial scrubs which listed plastics among their ingredients, and these were subjected to vacuum filtration to obtain the plastic particles.

Subsequent analysis using electron microscopy showed that each 150 ml of the products could contain between 137,000 and 2.8 million microparticles.

Also Read: Common Plastic Chemical May Increase Breast Cancer Risk

“Currently, there are reported to be 80 facial scrubs in the UK market which contain plastic material, however some companies have indicated they will voluntarily phase them out from their products. In the meantime, there is very little the consumer can do to prevent this source of pollution,” Napper noted.

The findings appeared in the journal Marine Pollution Bulletin. (Bollywood Country)

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Single-Use Plastic Banned By The European Parliament

The EU plastics bill also includes deadlines for reducing or recycling other plastics such as bottles, fishing lines, food wrappers, and cigarette filters.

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Microplastics, plastic
Plastic bottles and other plastics, including a mop, lie washed up on the bank of the River Thames in London, Britian. VOA

The European Parliament voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to ban single-use plastic products such as straws, eating utensils and coffee sticks across the European Union.

The measure passed 571 to 53, with 34 abstentions.

If approved by the European Commission — the EU executive — and individual states, the ban would become law in 2021.

plastic waste
Plastic items washed up by the sea are seen at the Ao Phrao Beach, on the island of Ko Samet, Thailand, June 9, 2018. (VOA)

Supporters say plastics are a major source of pollution that chokes oceans, litters cities, and can take decades to disintegrate.

Some U.S. cities have moved to ban plastic straws in restaurants after a heartbreaking video of a wildlife rescuer pulling a straw out of a turtle’s bloody nose was posted on the internet earlier this year.

plastic, vietnam
A plastic bottle washed up by the sea . (VOA)

A consortium of European plastics manufacturers called the EU bill “disproportionate” and said banning single-use plastics discourages investment into new ways to recycle.

Also Read: New Carbon Capture Technology Now Able To Flight Climate Change: Experts

The EU plastics bill also includes deadlines for reducing or recycling other plastics such as bottles, fishing lines, food wrappers, and cigarette filters. (VOA)