This Popular Skincare Product Has Cancer-Linked Chemical Found In High Amount, Study Finds

Some of the most popular skincare products have been found to contain high levels of benzene. It is an ingredient that is linked to cancer.

The discovery was made during a recent study by an independent testing lab named Valisure. It found that benzoyl peroxide-containing acne treatment products like Proactiv, Clinique, and Clearasil significantly exceeded the 2 parts per million of benzene allowed by U.S. Food & Drug Administration guidelines for such products.

Vasilure tested 66 products that contain benzoyl peroxide. Usually at temperatures that replicate different environments where consumers may keep them in their homes, it was found that Proactiv’s 2.5% benzoyl peroxide cream contained 1,761 parts per million of benzene.

On the other hand, Clinique’s cream contained 401 parts per million, and Clearasil contained 308. (Read More: 5 Superfoods To Rejuvenate Your Skin This Year)

“Substantially different”

David Light, the president and co-founder of Valisure, stated in a press release that the results are “substantially different.” They were compared to other consumer goods the company has examined, such as hand sanitizers and sunscreens.

“The benzene we found in sunscreens and other consumer products were impurities that came from contaminated ingredients; however, the benzene in benzoyl peroxide products is coming from the benzoyl peroxide itself, sometimes at hundreds of times the conditional FDA limit,” claimed Light.

“This means the problem broadly affects benzoyl peroxide products, both prescription and over-the-counter, and necessitates urgent action.”

Can cause ‘Cancer’

Benzene is a ‘carcinogen’ that is commonly used as a solvent in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries.

When people are exposed to benzene, it can cause cells to work wrongly. It has the potential to damage the immune system by destroying white blood cells. Long-term side effects of benzene exposure can cause cancers such as leukemia, have negative effects on bone marrow, and cause excessive bleeding and bruising.

Recall the products

The company filed a petition with the FDA. They are asking the administration to recall the benzoyl peroxide acne products.

Benzene has prompted several product recalls from major brands in the past. For example, in 2022, Edgewell Personal Care recalled a batch of its Banana Boat Hair & Scalp Sunscreen SPF 30 due to the presence of benzene. In January last year, it expanded that recall to include three more batches of the product.

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