Over the last decade or so, there’s been a strong mainstream consumer push for companies to create products that are not only less toxic to our environment, but for ourselves as well.
Products labelled as natural, non-toxic, green or earth-friendly can mask a many a broad and often confusing definition of what you’re dealing with when planning to colour your performance with body markers.
Many art markers used today in sports applications for marking on human skin state on the label that they are AP certified non-toxic. But what does AP Certified really mean? The Art and Creative Materials Institute, Inc. (ACMI) is an international association that comprises manufacturers of art, craft and creative materials. Their organisation seeks to promote safety in art and creative products through its certification program.”
When a product receives the AP Seal, it means that the product has been tested and that toxins were not found in sufficient quantities to be injurious to people.
However, this certification only applies when that product is being used for the intent it was created. In other words, this doesn’t mean it’s safe to use markers containing the AP seal on skin.
The marker is considered safe when used on materials like paper but is not specifically tested for use on the human body.
What ingredients are in these AP certified markers? We don’t know because there’s no requirement to list them. However many permanent ink markers, both art and industrial, used for body marking contain toxic chemicals such as Xylene, Toluene, and Cresol which are absorbed into the bloodstream through vapours and skin contact.
- Xylene: Colourless toxic chemical with a distinctive odour. Known to cause minor skin irritations when absorbed into the skin, Xylene can cause pain, swelling, redness and itching.
- Toluene: Toluene is a toxic, clear, colourless liquid that when it comes in contact with air, it turns into a vapour at room temperature. The vapour has a distinctive sharp or sweet odour which is a sign of exposure. Toluene affects the central nervous system including the skin, eyes, respiratory system, kidneys and liver.
- Cresol – A liquid that can come in many different colours including yellow, brownish-yellow, pink AND colourless. Reports from skin exposure have included severe skin burns, scarring and toxicity that affects numerous systems in the body.
The makers of SportSafeTM marker inks ask ‘why subject your body to toxic chemicals when there’s an alternative?’
The makers of SportSafeTM marker inks, note:
“Our markers contain body safe FDA compliant cosmetic ingredients (ingredients are clearly listed on each product) that are water resistant and easy to remove when you’re ready.”