Next time you’re perusing the cosmetics counter at Macy’s or the personal-care aisle of CVS, you might want to take a pass on the lip liner and aftershave. According to new research conducted by scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health, exposure to monoethyl phthalate, a chemical commonly used in cosmetics and fragrances, may lead to DNA damage in men’s sperm. Other studies have linked chemicals in the phthalates family to birth defects in animals, but this is one of the first studies on the effects of phthalates in humans. The finding comes just weeks after a controversial decision by the U.S. Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel, an industry-backed watchdog, to allow the continued use of three types of phthalates in personal-care products and perfumes, with assertions that the chemical uses were safe. The new study, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, does not indicate whether sperm damage from monoethyl phthalate could lead to infertility or birth defects.