On the set I got, some of the colors have a warning by them for the state of California and it also says "some colors may contain cadmium pigments". There is the obvious warning not to breathe in pastel dust. Personally, I am sure all the sets that come from Europe contain the same toxins, but in the USA the products have to have a warning label on them. Colors imported from France, Germany, etc. don't have such strict labelling laws. I use a very good HEPA filter in my studio and keep it cranked up on a high level when I am working. I wear latex gloves when I work also, but I cannot bring myself to use a mask, which would definitely fog up my glasses, so I'll take my chances that I die a little sooner but live happier by painting!