Ad campaign during Toronto Fashion Week alerts Canadians to the dangerous, undisclosed, toxic substances in some of their cosmetics
Toronto, ON – An environmental group is making a statement at Toronto Fashion Week with an ad campaign that spotlights the harmful chemicals in some cosmetics and personal care products. The provocative ads, commissioned by Environmental Defence, the environmental organization that led the charge to ban Bisphenol A (BPA) in baby bottles, will run on a giant screen in David Pecaut Square alongside Toronto Fashion Week events.
The campaign alerts Canadians to the many cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting and allergy-inducing substances in some of the cosmetics and personal care products they use every day, and urges the federal government to give the Canadian beauty industry a long overdue makeover.
“There’s no better venue to highlight the persistence of cancer-causing chemicals in cosmetics than Toronto Fashion Week,” said Dr. Rick Smith, executive director, Environmental Defence. “We hope that the Canadian government will follow Europe’s lead by improving labeling, and banning or restricting toxic substances in cosmetics.”
To raise awareness about the toxins in Canadian products, Environmental Defence partnered with creative agency Open to create the 60-second spot “How To Look Pretty Without Poisoning Yourself,” directed by Partners Films’ Aleysa Young, that will run once per hour, daily, from 10 AM to 11 PM from March 12 to March 16.
In the ad, a chipper game show contestant must choose a cosmetic product that doesn’t contain toxins and cancer-causing chemicals, a “game” that thousands of Canadian women play on a daily basis whenever they buy make-up or perfume containing harmful substances. Naturally, she loses because flaws in Canadian cosmetic regulations mean that there are undisclosed toxic ingredients in many cosmetic products.
In addition to the large screens, Environmental Defence will replicate the game featured in the ads on the streets outside of Fashion Week’s tent in David Pecaut Square and along King Street West, inviting passersby to guess the toxicity of common cosmetics on the market. Fashion Week outreach is part of Environmental Defence’s ongoing Just Beautiful campaign ( rallying for safer cosmetics in Canada.
The 60-second ad can be viewed at 
About Environmental Defence ( Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.


For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Erin Charter, Environmental Defence, 416-323-9521 ext. 258; 647-210-7888 (cell);