Mardi Gras Beads (2012) Purple: 315 ppm Lead, 132 ppm Cadmium.
Tested with an XRF instrument.
The amount of lead that is considered toxic in an item intended for children is anything 90 parts per million (ppm) or higher. On the outside of the bags that Mardi Gras beads come in they are labeled with a warning that says “Not intended for children under 12 years old.” However the individual strands are not required to be labeled (given they are not being sold as a child’s toy.)
The only Mardi Gras beads that I have personally tested that were consistently lead free are new ones from Disney Land or Disney World. Otherwise I always recommend avoiding giving these to children to play with. The lead is in both the coating and some of the substrate (plastic), and the coating will often chip or peel with regular play use by children. Additionally this result here (shown with this particular set of beads) is on the low side for toxics. Most of the Mardi Gras beads that I have tested and found to be positive for lead and cadmium were positive at much higher levels.
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“Unexpected Lead Expert”