NEW YORK — The Health Department is warning New York City residents about 10 skin-lightening creams and two medicated soaps that have high levels of mercury.
The products, which can be bought over the counter, contain up to 14,000 times the allowed limit for mercury in cosmetics, health officials said.
The health department recommends New Yorkers stop using all skin-lightening creams and medicated soaps with mercury as a listen ingredient, but also advises consumers that mercury will not always be listed.
Those using non-prescribed skin lightening products should speak to their doctor.
The Health Department is working with New York City businesses to remove the 10 skin-lightening creams from Pakistan and two medicated soaps from Spain from their shelves:
- Due Beauty Cream made by Kreative Cosmetics (Pvt) Ltd.
- Sandal Whitening Beauty Cream made by MMC Cosmetics, Pakistan
- Chandni Whitening Cream made by SJ Enterprises, Pakistan
- Golden Pearl Beauty Cream made by Golden Pearl Cosmetics
- Face Fresh Beauty Cream made by Shaheen Cosmetics, Pakistan
- Faiza No. 1 Beauty Cream made by A.M. Cosmetics (Pak), Pakistan
- Faiza Beauty Cream made by Poonia Brothers (Pak), Pakistan
- Seven Herbal Ubtan Cream made by C.P.H.L.
- Stillman’s Freckle Cream and Stillman’s Skin Bleach Cream made in Pakistan under license from the Stillman Company, Inc., USA
- Niuma Medicated Antiseptic Soap made by Niuma Belleza, Spain
- Niuma Lemon Medicated Germicidal Soap made by Niuma Belleza, Spain
Exposure to mercury can cause serious and life-threatening problems, including damage to the kidneys and nervous system as well as affects on the fetus or miscarriage risks for pregnant women.
The Health Department advises New Yorkers to:
- Immediately stop using all skin-lightening creams and medicated soaps that list mercury as an ingredient. · Tell your health care provider if you are using non-prescription products to lighten skin or for skin disorders.
- Call 311 to report locations where these products are sold.
- Call 212-POISONS (212-764-7667) or visit http://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/health/healthtopics/mercury.page for additional information.