HSA Alert: ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’ Detected to Contain High Levels of Mercury

The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) is alerting members of the public not to purchase or use ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’, as it was tested by HSA to contain high levels of mercury. The product which was sold on various online platforms was purported to have skin whitening and anti-wrinkle effects. Consumers who have purchased or are using this product are advised to stop using and discard them immediately. Please refer to Annex A of the pdf version for pictures of the product.

2    HSA had been alerted by the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE), which tested a range of skincare products recently and found this product which was sold online to contain high levels of mercury. HSA followed up and further tested several samples of the product obtained from various online platforms. All samples tested positive with high mercury levels. HSA has directed the web administrators of online platforms to remove all listings of the product from the websites and will take the necessary actions against sellers of ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’.

3    Mercury is a toxic substance and is prohibited for use as an ingredient in cosmetic products. Regular application of creams containing mercury could lead to rash, skin discolouration and blotching. Chronic exposure to high levels of mercury in cosmetic products may also affect the kidneys and nervous system as it can be absorbed through the skin.

Consumer advisory

4    Members of the public are advised to:

  • Stop using the product and see a doctor if they are experiencing adverse effects following its use.
  • Exercise discretion in their purchase of cosmetic products, including those purchased from online sources. They should purchase these from reliable and reputable sources. Unlike other commodities, the use of poor quality and falsely labelled health products including cosmetics can cause serious health effects.
  • Visit www.healthdangers.sg to learn more about the dangers of buying illegal health products from questionable sources.

Advisory to sellers of cosmetic products

5    Sellers must stop selling ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’ immediately. It is their responsibility to ensure that the cosmetic products they are selling are safe and comply with Singapore’s regulatory requirements such as the absence of prohibited substances.

6    HSA will take action against anyone found selling ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’. Anyone who supplies illegal health products is liable to prosecution and if convicted, may be imprisoned for up to 3 years and/or fined up to $100,000.

7    Members of the public who have any information on the sale and supply of ‘Royal Expert Whitening Cream’ or other illegal products may contact HSA's Enforcement Branch at Tel: 6866-3485 during office hours (Monday to Friday) or email: hsa_is@hsa.gov.sg.

22 MAY 2017

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