A 2012 FDA investigation discovered that many imported creams and lotions contained mercury, a very toxic ingredient that can lead to very serious health problems including kidney and neurological damage. Skin lightening products are among the worst offenders for mercury contamination among other toxic ingredients. Many of these products come from Asia and Latin America (eg. China and Mexico) and are either brought into the United States for private use, sold in some neighborhood shops, and/or purchased online. Be wary of products with no listed ingredients.
According to FDA regulation, products must label and list ingredients. Please check here for more information.
Phthalates and parabens are believed to be hormone disruptors.
Be wary of products containing the word “fragrance” in its ingredient list. This term is unregulated and can conceal dozens of toxic substances. Instead, opt for products that list essential oils as main ingredients for fragrance.
- Check out this list of non-toxic body lotions.