Philippines bans more suspect Chinese cosmetics

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Philippine health regulators said Wednesday they had banned nine more apparently Chinese-made cosmetic products because they were found to contain dangerous levels of mercury.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) tests of the facial creams, seven advertised as cure for freckles and two others as "skin-whitening," prompted the latest advisory.

"Collected on separate occasions at various establishments, (they) contain heavy metal (mercury) exceeding the allowable limit of one part per million," the advisory said.

The FDA issued a similar warning two weeks ago for three other creams, all bearing the Jiao Li brand.

Bureau director Nazarita Tacandong said on Wednesday four of the nine other creams bore the same Jiao Li brand. The others were Xin Jiao Li, Jiao Liang, Xin Jiao Liang, Jiao Mei, and Jiao Yan.

They were imported without government authority, she said, and ordered them seized. She also warned shops stocking these products that they faced criminal prosecution.

Tacandong previously said the Jiao Li creams were apparently manufactured in China. She could not be reached for comment Wednesday, and the bureau did not say where the other brands were manufactured.

Many Filipinos go to great lengths to make their skin appear lighter than its natural brown, believing this would make them more attractive.