EcoWaste said it bought dozens of skin whitening creams and lipsticks on Sept. 7 and 8, which were found to contain mercury and lead beyond the regulatory limits of 1 and 20 parts per million (ppm), respectively, upon screening using a portable X-ray Fluoresence device. The group said the products were sold for P20 to P120 each.
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EcoWaste: Toxic lipsticks, whitening creams sold in Davao City
Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - September 13, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Severals cosmetics sold in Davao City contain dangerous levels of mercury and lead, according to environmental watchdog EcoWaste Coalition.

EcoWaste said it bought dozens of skin whitening creams and lipsticks on Sept. 7 and 8, which were found to contain mercury and lead beyond the regulatory limits of 1 and 20 parts per million (ppm), respectively, upon screening using a portable X-ray Fluoresence device. The group said the products were sold for P20 to P120 each.

It said 13 of the 20 skin whitening products contained mercury in excess of the 1 ppm limit.

Mercury amounting to 1,187 to 2,330 ppm was detected in Erna, Jiaoli and S’Zitang creams, which had been banned by the Food and Drug Administration.

Twenty-four of the 100 lipsticks have lead levels ranging from 118 to 30,500 ppm.

Counterfeit lipsticks bearing the names MAC Vivaglam, Dermacol and April Skin were found laced with lead beyond the 20 ppm limit.

“Both lead and mercury are highly toxic and are not permitted as ingredients in cosmetic products. The continued sale of cosmetics laden with this poison, most of which are contraband and counterfeit items, is putting the health of consumers at risk and should be stopped,” Thony Dizon, EcoWaste’s chemical safety campaigner, said.

EcoWaste and the Interfacing Development Interventions for Sustainability urged city government officials to impose stiffer penalties against erring establishments and individuals.

“Aside from its health benefits... halting the sale of poison cosmetics will prevent the leakage of lead and mercury into the environment, particularly when these chemicals are discharged into wastewater and water bodies,” the groups pointed out.

The World Health Organization said lead and mercury are among the “10 chemicals of major public health concern.”               

ECOWASTE COALITION
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