Consumers should avoid skin lighteners, "anti-aging" creams, and other cosmetics that may contain toxic levels of mercury, the FDA advised in an alert issued recently.    Products that list "mercurous chloride," "calomel," "mercuric," "mercurio," or "mercury" among their ingredients -- or that don't list ingredients in English, or at all -- should not be used, the FDA warned.

The alert came after the Minnesota Department of Health tested 27 products marketed as skin lighteners, finding that 11 exceeded the FDA's allowable limit of 1 ppm of mercury compounds.   Several of these contained mercury at concentrations thousands of times higher -- one, an imported Asian product called "Lemon Herbal Whiting Cream," tested at 33,000 ppm, or 3.3% mercury.

Individuals who have already purchased products that might contain mercury should throw them away immediately, the FDA urged. The agency said it had received several reports of people who were treated for mercury poisoning after using skin-care products.

Specific products identified by the FDA and the Minnesota health department as containing excessive mercury included creams and soaps with brand names such as Diana, Fasco, and Stillman's. Others had labels that were only in Chinese or Arabic scripts.

All the offending products had been imported, but the FDA emphasized that the warning applied to cosmetics originating from anywhere.

The agency also noted that persons using such products are not the only ones affected. Family members may inhale mercury vapors emanating from users' skin. Also, young children may ingest mercury after touching a user's skin and then putting their fingers in their mouths.

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Comments

Interesting article! Clearly Mercury needs to be avoided at all costs, all the evidence surrounding toxicity associated with mercury poisoning is widely documented.
The health risk is too high.

Very good article; mercury needs to be avoided at all costs. Thank you so much for raising our awareness about this topic.

I got a friend that was affected with this catastrophic mercury content, She had bought a beauty cream that it will remove scars and whitens the skin. Later to find out that her skin went to blemish red then a bruise color. Sad part is that she has to accept that buying cheap products and not tested proven ruins her entire career where her work needs the pleasing persona.

I have really dry skin and use loads of creams everyday just to stop the irritation and reduce the redness. This is really quite an eye opener, time to pay more attention to what I am putting on my skin...

I never imagine about that the creams are so dangerous, Sometimes my children eat a little bit when forget to lock my dressing table.

Hi
Thanks for sharing us this very informative and well written blog post. It is very interesting! I love every bit of it especially the points that you expressed. And I would love to come back in a regular basis so post more of the subject!!!

The alert came after the Minnesota Department of Health tested 27 products marketed as skin lighteners, finding that 11 exceeded the FDA’s allowable limit of 1 ppm of mercury compounds. Several of these contained mercury at concentrations thousands of times higher — one, an imported Asian product called “Lemon Herbal Whiting Cream,” tested at 33,000 ppm, or 3.3% mercury.

These type of products are still so popular. I think the "rewards" they hold too often override any possible side effects. If I have kids I will make sure they do not go near this stuff. A lot of people try all sorts of products without any thoughts of effects.

It’s very disturbing. These facts can’t compete with the over advertising and seduction techniques of the big skin care brands.

Health officials sent out a medical alert after tracing the mercury poisoning of to an illegal skin-lightening cream.

Thanks for sharing this article, I had no idea that mercury would be in anti aging creams. We need to get the general public notified of this.

I used to use a face cream containing mercury to eliminate acne. once I know mercury is dangerous for skin health, I immediately stop using it. I think it's better to treat the skin naturally, such as the use of fruits.

Very nice post specially for those who try to use skin lightener cream without any recommendation of a dermatologist. I think homemade organic treatment using natural product is best to lighten your skin. Because mostly skin lightener products available in the market contains more or less harsh chemicals which can damage our skin and destroy our face beauty.

Great article! Thank you for raising awareness abut this important topic.

Gosh Sharon - mercury in cosmetics nowadays ?
that sounds like a throwback to pre-Victorian times where lead and arsenic were also common ingredients in beauty products they may look good but time over use can have scary results from products containing mercury

This should be one of the reasons for the increasing cases of skin cancer around the world today. The FDA should take further steps in acting against the producers of these skin care products and also increase awareness/public awareness.

Yikes!!! On top of the high levels of mercury we get from our food, now we have to look at skin creams... I personally use a product from the ponds line which i believe is made in america and good for you. thanks for the info!

Skin lightening products are still so popular, I think the 'promises' they hold too often override any possible side effects, for people who are prepared to do almost anything to lighten their skin. A lot of asians try all sorts of products without any thoughts of effects (I worked in spas for years and this was a common request).

I have to say I'm surprised about some anti aging products too - this is a great article for awareness. Again though, it's sad these facts are more mainstream, they can't compete with the over advertising and seduction techniques of the big skin care brands.

Isn'i it better to use anti-aging cream, wrinkle-fighting solutions which are made from natural ingredients and minerals by real worldwide known companies. They work and they safe.
Lan

Very nice post specially for those who try to use skin lightener cream without any recommendation of a dermatologist. I think homemade, organic treatments using natural products is best to lighten your skin.

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