Do ‘Cosmeceuticals’ Cause Cancer?

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Do ‘Cosmeceuticals’ Cause Cancer? featured image

Dr. Samuel Epstein is angry. According to him, the cosmetics industry is selling unsafe products to ignorant consumers. But it isn’t just controversial parabens that and chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition is speaking out against-he’s railing against AHAs.

Despite ample scientific support for the safety of glycolic, lactic and other popular alpha-hydroxy acids found in skincare products, Epstein, who is also a University of Illinois professor, says that manufacturers’ suggestion to wear sunscreen while using these ingredients just isn’t enough. He wants the FDA to place black box warnings-used on prescription drugs known for serious side effects-on products with these and other ingredients he and his organization deem risky.

“People who use cosmeceuticals are guinea pigs in reckless and self-serving industry experiments to test whether these products are safe for human health,” Epstein said in a Huffington Post editorial. However, the Personal Care Products Council takes exception to his inflammatory statements.

“The highest priority of the Personal Care Products Council member companies is the safety and health of consumers who use our products,” the organization stated. “Companies are required by law to substantiate the safety of all ingredients and products before they are marketed.”

Furthermore, The Council says Epstein’s use of the term cosmeceutical shows a flaw in his argument, as this isn’t even a recognized product category for the FDA: “Any reference to a ‘cosmeceutical’ fails to recognize the vast difference between the way cosmetics and drugs are regulated.”

What do you think? Is Dr. Epstein overreacting or is he onto something? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.

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