While heavily regulated, asbestos is not banned in the U.S. Companies can still important and manufacture certain products that contain asbestos. In the past, manufacturers of all types of consumer goods relied on asbestos because of its ability to insulate and fireproof products.
While today most companies will not use asbestos in their manufacturing, older products that remain in households may still contain the mineral. These include:
- Vehicle parts like brake pads, gaskets, clutches
- Household appliances and other kitchen gadgets
- Construction materials like insulation, cement, flooring and roofing components
- Textiles like fire-proof clothing
A recent story in the news highlights how some manufacturers may not be entirely truthful about whether products contain asbestos. The popular children's clothing and makeup retailer Justice, which has locations in the Pittsburgh area, made unwanted headlines this month when a local news station in another state uncovered that a makeup powder contained asbestos. The product's ingredient list did not list asbestos.
According to the investigation, the company's Just Shine Shimmer Powder contained asbestos. In a statement, the retailer said it was pulling the product off of shelves nationwide while it investigates.
Asbestos is harmless as long as it is not disturbed. However, if it is indeed in this powder, using it could release asbestos into the air, which anyone could breathe in. Exposure to asbestos has long been linked to asbestosis, mesothelioma and other types of cancers, especially for workers who spent years exposed to the mineral.
Anyone who thinks they have asbestos in their home and that it is danger of being disturbed should contact an experienced professional to assess the situation.