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Uh-oh, here’s a bit of bad news that might have lip lovers foaming at the mouth: Cult cosmetics brand Lime Crime has been slapped with a stern missive from the FDA for the inclusion of two insidious ingredients in its lipstick line-up.

The legalese-filled letter is offered online in full for your perusal, but here’s the tl;dr version of what we know so far about this beauty boo-boo. Lime Crime’s lust-worthy Velvetines Liquid Matte Lipstick (sidenote: These babies are absolutely perfect for nailing Kylie Jenner’s signature satiny smackers) have caused the powers-that-be to pucker up in consternation because of the formula’s (alleged) use of ferric ferrocyanide and ultramarine colourants.

Ferric what? For those not in the know, a cursory Google search throws up some disquieting evidence pointing to said chemicals’ capacity for inducing redness and rashes around the mouth.  

In turn, Lime Crime has responded in kind with an open letter reassuring beauty buffs that this whole kerfuffle is “simply a labelling error”, and that “those ingredients are not in Lime Crime’s Velvetines products”.

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So there you have it, a rebuttal straight from the horse’s mouth. Still, this rumpus raises several pertinent points of discussion, chief of which is the pressing need to scrutinise the labels of your beauty haul for stuff that may be sickening you the consumer.

After all, you’re quite literally putting one’s money where one’s mouth is. Think of the number of times you re-apply your lippie – touch-ups are required precisely because some of your lip product is inevitably swallowed. Scary, right?

The solution: Be a beauty brainiac by doing your research and arming yourself with a comprehensive overview of the “good” and “bad” brands on the market. There’s a ton of advocacy groups and sites out there, so it’s really just a click and bookmark away to your virtual beauty manual.

To carry the skincare metaphor to its logical conclusion, knowledge is like an astringent – it’ll enable you to cut through the “grease” of marketing messages, so as to select a mild-on-the-mouth, big-on-the-drama lipstick that welds the best of the “natural” and “synthetic” worlds into a single bullet. Good luck with your search!

Want more? Get all the top tips and tricks to nailing what is shaping up to be this season’s biggest beauty trend: Lipstick, lipstick, lipstick.