Some batches of antiperspirant and deodorant sprays from brands such as Old Spice, Secret, Equate, Suave, Tag, Sure, Right Guard, Brut and many more contain dangerous levels of the carcinogen, benzene, according to the testing company. independent pharmaceutical Valisure.
Exposure to benzene over a long period of time can cause problems with the immune system, bone marrow and blood, including blood cancer, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Last May, Valisure testedand found that some lots also contained dangerous amounts of benzene. In response, Johnson & Johnson announced on July 14 that it was voluntarily recalling certain and Aveeno spray sunscreens “out of caution.” Beiersdorf-owned Coppertone issued a similar recall on September 30 for certain aerosol sunscreens.
Benzene is widely used in the United States, according to the CDC. It is used to make certain types of lubricants, rubbers, dyes, detergents and more. However, because it is a known carcinogen, the United States Food and Drug Administration has said the chemical should not be used in pharmaceuticals (according to Valisure, antiperspirants are generally regulated in as medicinal products, while deodorants are regulated as cosmetic products). If the use of benzene is “unavoidable to produce a drug,” the levels should be maintained at 2 parts per million. Benzene is not needed to make sunscreen or antiperspirant and deodorant sprays.
In a citizen petition, Valisure asked the FDA to recall 38 lots of body sprays. The company also asked the FDA to issue guidelines for benzene in aerosolized body spray products, to review current guidelines for body spray products, and to respond to similar requests. According to the CDC, benzene evaporates very quickly in the air.
One hundred and eight batches of products from 30 different brands were tested for benzene, by Valisure, and 54% of the batches contained at least part of the chemical. One batch of Old Spice Pure Sport antiperspirant contained the most benzene, at 17.7 parts per million.
Brands of antiperspirants and deodorants that contain 2 parts per million benzene or more can be found in Table 2 of Valisure’s petition to the FDA. Antiperspirants and deodorants that contain between 0.1 ppm and 2 ppm benzene can be found in Table 3. Most of the products on the list are for underarm use, but a few are marketed as sprays. body or vaginal sprays.
If you see your own deodorant or antiperspirant on the list, check the lot number on your product to see if it has been tested and if it is contaminated. Valisure is asking the FDA to recall the products in Tables 2 and 3, but the agency has not listed any company recalls yet. When products are recalled by a company, customers are generally asked to dispose of the contaminated product. For aerosol cans, you may need to consult your local guidelines for disposal information.
The FDA did not immediately comment. High Ridge Brands (Brut, Sure), My Products USA (Tag), Procter & Gamble (Old Spice, Secret), Thriving Brands (Right Guard), Unilever (Suave) and Walmart (Equate) did not immediately respond to requests. to comment.
The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute health or medical advice. Always consult a doctor or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have about a health problem or health goals.