For those new to this website:
Tamara Rubin is a multiple-Federal-award-winning independent advocate for childhood Lead poisoning prevention and consumer goods safety, and a documentary filmmaker. She is also a mother of Lead-poisoned children (two of her four sons were acutely Lead-poisoned in 2005). Since 2009, Tamara has been using XRF technology (a scientific method used by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission) to test consumer goods for toxicants (specifically heavy metals — including Lead, Cadmium, Mercury, Antimony, and Arsenic). All test results reported on this website are science-based, accurate, and replicable. Items are tested multiple times to confirm the test results for each component tested. Tamara’s work was featured in Consumer Reports Magazine in February of 2023 (March 2023 print edition).
Published: March 6, 2019
Yikes — I guess it’s not just glass baby bottles that are painted with Leaded paint these days!!!
My husband bought this water pipe attachment (the Sneaky Pete Arizer Bubble Straw) to use with his fancy vape (we’re in Oregon after all, where cannabis is legal — and quite popular! (He explained his thinking was that any relatively “low-risk” stress-reduction strategy is definitely welcome/pretty much mandatory in these trying times — and the combination of such a thoughtfully-designed vape [he acquired that device a while ago] plus this clever water-cooling accessory seemed like a sure-fire “healthier” way to chill out!)
What is apparently also legal, however, is that lovely accessories such as this — an ingenious example of glass art, really — are allowed to be sold decorated with paint that is positive for three known poisons to humans: Lead, Cadmium, and Arsenic!
What’s most upsetting is that this is not the first vape component I have tested that was positive for Lead.
When tested with an XRF instrument, the painted logo on this borosilicate glass vape stem (by Sneaky Pete Vaporizers) had the following readings (each test done for a minimum of 60 seconds):
- Lead (Pb): 6,827 +/- 120 ppm
- Cadmium: (Cd): 2,233 +/- 47 ppm
- Arsenic (As): 807 +/- 59 ppm
- Barium (Ba): 366 +/- 148 ppm
- Chromium (Cr): 256 +/- 64 ppm
- Selenium (Se): 442 +/- 16 ppm
- Zinc (Zn): 1,249 +/- 26 ppm
- Nickel (Ni): 19 +/- 12 ppm
- Iron (Fe): 70 +/- 27 ppm
- Metals not listed were not detected by the XRF instrument in consumer goods testing mode.
Continue reading below the image:
Here’s a second set of readings for good measure (confirming similar levels, with a slightly different area of the logo in the scope of the XRF instrument):
- Lead (Pb): 5,024 +/- 93 ppm
- Cadmium: (Cd): 1,583 +/- 38 ppm
- Arsenic (As): 596 +/- 50 ppm
Simple solution: Please consider checking first when purchasing items like this to confirm that they come (or can perhaps be orderable) without any painted logos or markings.
Of course, my husband was very disappointed that this thing he bought to relax and get away from his wife’s depressing daily grind of ferreting out heavy metal toxicants in consumer goods ironically turned out to be painted with Lead paint!
Update: Amazing response from the company…
When we shared this discovery with the company — they immediately sent us a replacement piece with no painted markings at all. I love getting responses like that right away. I don’t yet know if they changed their products (or their paint formulations) across the board — but hopefully, now that they know better, they can re-source or reformulate the markings on their glass products and perhaps even offer some right away on their website without any painted markings at all! (I will check back with them to see if they are doing anything different since our initial findings were shared with them — and I will let you know about that here with another update!)
This stuff doesn’t have to be hard, but most manufacturers of quality glass items actually HAVE NO IDEA that the paint used for their decorations and logos may be high in potent neurotoxicants (like Lead, Cadmium, and Arsenic).
As always, please let me know if you have any questions and I will do my best to answer them personally as soon as I have a moment.
Some additional reading:
- Here’s another article about “safe smoking” when it comes to concerns about toxicants (heavy metals) like Lead, Cadmium, Arsenic, and others.
- Here’s our full “420” category of articles on this website. There are currently 10 related articles — including test results for screens, pipes, and hemp wick examples. You can also find the category by clicking the “420” keyword at the top of this article (under the headline).
- Here are more articles with test results for other borosilicate glass items we have tested.
Thank you for reading and for sharing the articles on LeadSafeMama.com/TamaraRubin.com.
Tamara Elise Rubin
Owner, Lead Safe Mama, LLC