Ghosts of Christmas Past

Study Finds Toxic Chemicals in a Majority of Seasonal Holiday Décor Products; No Improvement in String Lights or Beaded Garlands

HealthyStuff.org tested 69 seasonal holiday products purchased in November 2014 from major retailers. More than two-thirds of the products contained at least one hazardous chemical at levels of concern. Beaded garlands were found to contain a multitude of toxic contaminants, mirroring the results from our 2013 study of beaded garlands. Light strings were also compared to an earlier study by HealthyStuff.org. The 2014 lights—including lights attached to decorations--commonly showed high levels of lead and bromine, as did the 2010 study.

For 2014, we expanded the test categories to include, in addition to beaded garlands: tinsel garlands, artificial wreaths and greenery, stockings, figurines and other tabletop decorations, and gift bags.

Product Highlights:

Published on December 16, 2014

Sample Listing

12 ft. Green Tinsel Garland
high
12 ft. Red Tinsel Garland
high
12 ft. Snowflake Tinsel Garland
high
15 ft. Red and Gold Tinsel Garland
high
18 ft. Lighted Garland
high
18-Ft Clear Crystalized Rope Lights
high
24 in. Wreath
high
9-Ft Non-Lit Branch Garland
high
Bead Garland
low
Beaded Red Ball Pick
medium
Bicycle Gfit Bag
low
Candy Cane Striped Stocking
medium
Decorative Bows
high
Decorative Pick
high
Decorative Spray
high
Decorative Tree
high
Gold Poinsettia Clip
medium
Gold Shiny Bow
low
Green Gold Red Beaded Garland
high
Holiday Door Hanger
medium
Holiday Home Tablecloth
medium
Holiday Swag Bundle
high
Jingle Bell Wreath
medium
Large Santa Hat
medium
Let It Snow Wooden Wall Hanging
high
Light-Up Snowman
medium
Light-Up Tree
low
Lighted Acrylic Snowflake
low
Merry Christmas Antlers Headband
high
Mini Bows
medium
Mini Red Sequin Stocking
medium
Mini Stocking with Sequins
medium
Mini Tree
low
Mini Wreath
high
Oblong Easy-Care Tablecloth
medium
Peanuts 10 in. Nutcracker
high
Poinsettia Garland
low
Poinsettia Pressed Vinyl Placemat
high
Poinsettia Wreath
high
Polar Bear Figurine
medium
Popcorn Tin
high
Red Gold Beaded Garland
high
Red Bead Garland
high
Red Fabric Ribbon
high
Red Felt Stocking
medium
Red Poinsettia Pick
medium
Red Stocking with Zebra Pattern
medium
Reindeer Figurine
low
Reindeer Gift Bag
high
Santa Decoration
medium
Santa Hanging Decor
high
Shiny Santa Hat
medium
Silver Bells
high
Silver Jingle Bell Door Hanger
high
Silver Joy Gift Bag
high
Snow Blanket with ice Flakes
medium
Snowflake
medium
Snowman Decoration
high
Snowman Figurine
medium
Snowman Gift Bag
low
Snowman Gift Bag Holographic
high
Snowman Placemat
low
Tinsel Garland
high
Twisty Cane
medium
Velvet Poinsettias with Glitz
high
Velvet Red Bow
high
Wall Art
high
Window Clings
high
X Large Take Out Box
medium
IMPORTANT NOTE: HealthyStuff.org ratings do not provide a measure of health risk or chemical exposure associated with any individual product, or any individual element or related chemical.