Federal health officials are warning consumers not to use skin creams, beauty and antiseptic soaps, or lotions that might contain mercury.
The products are marketed as skin lighteners and anti-aging treatments that remove age spots, freckles, blemishes and wrinkles, says Gary Coody, national health fraud coordinator in the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Regulatory Affairs. Adolescents also may use these products as acne treatments, adds Coody. Products with this toxic metal have been found in at least seven states.
The products are manufactured abroad and sold illegally in the United States—often in shops in Latino, Asian, African or Middle Eastern neighborhoods and online. Consumers may also have bought them in another country and brought them back to the U.S. for personal use.
The article notes if you see the words “mercurous chloride,” “calomel,” “mercuric,” “mercurio,” or “mercury,” to stop using the product immediately. And, if there is no label or no ingredients are listed, do not use the product. Federal law requires that ingredients be listed on the label of any cosmetic or drug. These products are not licensed.
As always, BE VERY CAUTIOUS (or do not use at all) products such as medications (even natural or herbal) or cosmetics that have not been tested and inspected. There is a good reason why we have such laws in the U.S. and most modern countries.