When tested with an XRF instrument this vintage (likely c. 1977-1989) crystal heart charm / fidget (it is not a bead, but something someone might hold in their hand or keep in a keepsake box)…. had the following readings:
- Lead (Pb): 557,800 +/- 77,000 ppm
- Antimony (Sb): 2,663 +/- 620 ppm
- Zinc (Zn): 21,100 +/- 3,100 pm
The test results shown here are for a 60 second test done with a freshly calibrated XRF instrument testing in “consumer goods” mode. All metals detected by the XRF are reported in the above reading set (no other metals were detected.) Results are science based, replicable and accurate. If you have questions about the testing reported on this site, please click here to learn more.
How much Lead is too much Lead?
The amount of Lead that is considered unsafe and illegal in a modern / newly manufactured item made and sold for use by children today is anything 90 ppm Lead or higher in the paint / glaze or coating and anything 100 ppm Lead or higher in the substrate. Since there is not a paint or coating on this item the “100 ppm” standard to determine toxicity would apply for this item (if it were modern.)
How dangerous is this item?
This item is incredibly dangerous.
- INGESTION: If it were swallowed by a child it might kill them – AND it is the right size to be swallowed by a young child.
- SKIN CONTACT: If a child touched this (and rubbed it and kept it in their pocket – as one often does with a fidget), Lead would wear off on to their hands and that child could be exposed to unsafe levels of Lead by any subsequent hand-to-mouth contact.
Crystals should not be considered toys. In the absence of intentionally choosing Lead-free crystal from a known vendor, crystal items should not be played with or used by children (this includes crystal glassware items.)
Thank you for reading and for sharing this post.
As always, please let me know if you have any questions!