Beware! There’s death in everything!

If you’re anything like me and mildly obsessed with Asian beauty products, you’re likely also always concerned about what’s actually in the stuff you’re slathering all over your face.

Enter Allure to confirm our worst fears: apparently dangerous levels of mercury have been found in skincare products being sold on Amazon and eBay. Lovely.

According to Allure, mercury has been found in creams claiming to be able to lighten or bleach the skin, fade dark spots and fine lines, and also as a preservative. Products produced in the U.S. are fine, since we have laws about acceptable levels of mercury (though is any mercury really acceptable?), but consumers should be particularly vigilant about things purchased from Asia and the Middle East. Where the things I love are made.

According to the story, the only way to make sure the stuff we’re buying is safe is to check the ingredients, but that logic seems flawed to me; if products are being produced in other countries, are they required to label products accurately? Would they really tell us that we’re buying poison? I suspect not. I know that mercury has been in cosmetics for centuries, but it also causes kidney damage, anxiety, depression, skin irritation and psychosis. This is scary stuff. There’s a reason Elizabethan women had pale white skin and short lives.

They also say that products with high levels of mercury will look grey, since that’s what color mercury is, but I don’t necessarily want to rely on the color of my products to determine whether or not they’re safe. It seems like another flawed detection method; how grey does it need to be to be considered dangerous? Should we be tossing any k-beauty product that’s even slightly greyish?

The companies I normally purchase products from, like Shiseido, Mizon, Face Shop and Innisfree, are reputable companies and I like to think that they don’t want to poison me, but how can I be sure? I’ll likely continue to use products made in Asia and sold on Amazon, but I’ll likely think twice about trying new stuff from brands I’ve never heard of.

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6 Comments

    • Teresa
      Permalink

      Same, though they also mentioned that the products can be for fading dark spots or acne scars, and that’s something that might have appealed to me before I read this story.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
  1. alwayscleia
    Permalink

    I feel like there’s something dangerous in everything. I don’t generally buy k beauty but that’s alarming that some products can contain mercury! I also doubt that companies putting it in their products are labelling correctly…

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    • Teresa
      Permalink

      I really wish we could trust companies to put the health of their customers over money/sales… but I guess it’s too much to ask.

      Like

      Reply
  2. Daena May
    Permalink

    You need to check the ingredients. Also if something has mercury, chances are the population of that country wouldnt use it either. If anything, you should be buying international beauty from trusted sites that ship it directly from source country. And not amazon and ebay, especially not american sellers in these. Since these are often refilled and repackaged and might not be original product at all. Its quite easy to reseal bottles and packages. I implore you to go directly to a brand’s website. A lot of korean brands have US websites. Or got to a store like yesstyle or korea depart or tester korea, etc. Since the brands you mentioned are drugstore, no one is going to dupe or refill them in korea itself. But since they are somewhat rare in the USA, there is a huge chance you are not using original products. In fact, for any kind of makeup, you should be buying directly from the brand website or a makeup website. Amazon and ebay are the last place you should be buying things like skincare or makeup

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    • Teresa
      Permalink

      I’ve gotten a lot of stuff from YesStyle but I’ve never heard of the other two sites you mentioned. Thanks for the recommendation!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

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