As we’ve known the dangers of lead we assume it’s not in anything anymore but unfortunately, that’s not true. Lead in purses has become a concern and it’s something to be aware of.
Originally Posted: October 3rd, 2011
We are aware of the dangers of lead in paint, but did you know that the dangers of lead do not just stop there? Now they are finding traces of lead in purses, handbags, and wallets!
This was a big shocker for me. One of the big reasons it was such so shocking is that ever since my teen years I had a purse collection like many women. My closest was filled with all kinds of purses; sparkles, shiny, faux leather, canvas and pretty much any kind you can think of. Naturally, after I heard about lead purses I was concerned.
The Center for Environmental Health pulled purses from over 100 retailers to test for lead. They pulled from all different retailers, including Target and Wal-Mart, a place many of us shop for the affordability. The results were scary. They found that some purses had 30 to 100 times more lead than what is allowed for all children’s items. Lead has still be being found in purses after it was first reported in 2009.
The purses that held the most concern were faux leather purses. The lead is used to bring shine and make the color last and unfortunately, these are the purses that seem to always be in style. The big thing to realize with these purses is not simply that they contain lead, it’s that the lead rubs off onto our hands, clothes, and items inside. This means that we are likely ingesting lead periodically during the day.
So the question is whether or not a cheap handbag is truly worth the cost it has on our bodies. I have cleaned my closet out, I will not carry a purse that poses a risk. Now it’s time for all of us to not only get rid of these toxic handbags but to also tell others. There are many women walking the streets with one of these handbags on their shoulders and they have no idea. If you are concerned whether your purse contains lead the Center for Environmental Health offers free lead testing.
*Editor’s note: The faux leather is almost always made from PVC. Almost all PVC contains lead to stabilize it. To avoid lead look for purses that are PVC-free. You can buy real leather but there are concerns about other heavy metals in leather due to the tanning process and some also have ethical reasons for not buying leather. We recommend looking at Etsy or Amazon Handmade for a handmade purse made from fabric. *