When the post-00s are using skincare products, it is not hard to imagine why the post-90s “aunties” are spend big money to stay young. Made with a wide range of essences, face creams are highly popular weapons against aging, as if they can make you look 10 years younger and freeze time. Why are they so effective? Is it because of the essences or the banned ingredients?
To find out the truth, Test-it™ selected 30 most popular face cream products in the market and joined hands with a professional laboratory to perform safety test using the world leading bio-testing technology Testing 2.0. Based on the test results, it rated 17 products as Green Fish (Excellent), 1 product as Yellow Fish (Basic) and 12 products as Red Fish (Sub-optimal).
Test-it™ found that mid-priced face cream samples had the best safety performance. Based on the results of ingredients check, banned ingredients were found in 6 of the face cream samples.
According to the World Health Organization and United Nations, choosing the wrong product could cause cancers, infertility, precocious puberty, obesity and neurological disorders. Test-it™ provides clear, direct test reports with lifestyle tips. Equipped with scientific and objective information, consumers can make safer purchasing choices. Stay tuned for more interesting facts.
Interesting Facts of Face Cream
Findings of Test-it™
Face creams under the test mainly include European brands, American brands, Oceanian brands and Asian brands.
A total of 6 samples of European brands are selected, with 3 (50%) rated as Green Fish and 3 (50%) rated as Red Fish;
For the 7 American brands selected, 2 (29%) samples are rated as Green Fish and 5 (71%) samples are rated as Red Fish;
A total of 2 samples of Oceanian brands are selected, with 1 (50%) rated as Yellow Fish and 1 (50%) rated as Red Fish;
For the 15 Asian brands selected, 12 (80%) samples are rated as Green Fish and 3 (20%) samples are rated as Red Fish.
Test-it™ found that, in terms of “brand origin”, samples of Asian brands have a higher passing rate in the bio-test and 80% of the samples are rated excellent, meaning that they are safer than samples of European, American and Oceanian brands.
Samples are classified into high-priced, mid-priced and low-priced:
Among the 30 samples tested, the most expensive one costs 50HKD/g, which is about 500 times of the cheapest one that costs 0.1HKD/g. The average price is 6.5HKD/g.
In terms of prices, the mid-priced and high-priced samples are safer, while the mid-priced ones had the best safety performance.
Acute toxicity test
Based on the acute toxicity test, 25 (83%) out of 30 samples are rates as excellent, 3 (10%) samples are rated as basic and 2 (7%) samples are rated as sub-optimal.
Some samples caused abnormal developments of the zebrafish embryos, including heart swelling and coagulation. Certain samples even killed the embryos and failed the test.
Chronic toxicity test
Based on the chronic toxicity test, 24 (80%) out of 30 samples are rates as excellent and 6 (20%) samples are rated as sub-optimal.
The estrogen level in 6 sub-optimal samples exceeded the limit, causing medaka embryos to emit green florescence light.
Based on the ingredients check, 24 (80%) samples are rates as excellent and 6(20%) samples contain banned ingredients.
Isobutylparaben (found in 1 sample) is a preservative in the paraben family and is an estrogen endocrine disruptor. It can be accumulated inside human body after prolonged use and therefore increase the risk of cancer. It is banned in China and the European Union;
Methylisothiazolinone (found in 3 samples) is a preservative which may cause allergy. The European Union has banned methylisothiazolinone since 16 April 2016.
Additionally, two banned colors were identified. There are Red 4 (CI 14700) banned by EU and Orange 4 (Orange 4 ) banned by US respectively.
In addition, other preservatives that may pose health threat were found in some of the samples. For example, dibutyl hydroxy toluene (found in 2 samples) may cause dermatitis and allergy as well as accelerate the growth of lung tumour; DMDM hydantoin (found in 1 sample) may cause skin allergy and release the carcinogenic formaldehyde; diazolidinyl urea (found in 1 sample) may also release carcinogenic formaldehyde.
This shows that preservatives are commonly found in face cream products. Consumers are advised to check the ingredients before purchase, so as to avoid using products with harmful of low-quality ingredients. Check out the Green Fish List of Excellent Products, which provides you with accurate and clear information for reference.
Skin Care Tips
Conventional chemical test 1.0 and the basic regulations only reflects the basic requirement for a product’s market entry. The mission of Test-it™ is to further improve product safety with world leading technology Testing 2.0. Though horizontal analysis in similar products, Test-it™ provides consumers with information and data for better consumer choices. Products are categorised as Green Fish, Yellow Fish and Red Fish according to test results.
Test-it™ has developed a high standard as a third party consumer goods evaluation platform. Developed by an experienced research and development team and an advisory board of toxicology experts from 12 countries, Test-it™ references from the global standard of China, EU, the U.S., Japan, WHO and OECD. With the application of fish embryo toxicity (FET) test technology (Testing 2.0), The standard of Test-it™ could be higher than the existing regulations.
Market research and product
Test-it™ selected 30 best selling face cream products by analysing sales and attention span from the Test-it™ fans group. The research is conducted in both e-commerce platform and physical store.
Purchasing Method and Channel
All tested samples were purchased by Test-it as a common customer. Samples were purchased from the brands’ official beauty counters and their globally recognised sales channels ( official flagship stores ) on major E-commerce platforms ( JD, Tmall, Koala, Amazon) . All sample were purchased anonymously.In order to maintain neutrality and objectiveness, Test-it reports will not accept products submitted by manufactures.
1、Transgenic medaka embryo testing for chronic toxicants.
2、Zebrafish embryo testing for acute toxicants
Vitargent adopts an exclusive ingredients screening system comparing restricted and high risk ingredients regulated by the CODEX Alimentarius of the WHO&FAO, USFDA, EU, Food and Drug Administration of Japan and China to further enhance product safety.
Ingredient Screening: Products must not contain any chemicals that are associated with health complications, eco-toxicity, or contamination by scientific safety evaluations, or are banned by the following governmental agencies and authoritative bodies.
US: USFDA’s ‘Summary of colour additives for use in the United States in foods, drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices’, ‘Prohibited & Restricted Ingredients’, and 'Everything Added to Food in the United States (EAFUS)'.
EU: European Commission Nos. 1333/2008, 1223/2009, 1129/2011, and 1130/2011, and Candidate List of substances of very high concern for Authorisation (SVHC) by European Chemicals Agency (2017).
China: China FDA’s ‘Safety and Technical Standard for Cosmetics’ (2015), and 'National food safety standards: food additive standard (GB2760-2014).
Japan: Japan’s ‘Standards for Cosmetics’ (2000), and 'Standard for use of food additives (2017)
WHO&FAO: CODEX Alimentarius
Results Analyzing Method
|Category||Medaka embryo testing for chronic toxicants||Zebrafish embryo testing for acute toxicants||Ingredients check|
|Pass safety threhold referring to WHO guideline on Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI)||Meet fish embryo test standard at high concentration||No banned or high concernedingredients|
||Pass safety threhold referring to WHO guideline on Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI)||Meet fish embryo test standard at normal concentration||No banned but contain high concerned ingredients|
||Fail (reading exceed ADI or over 50% fish death at Vitargent category-based reference line )||Fail fish embryo test standard at normal concentration||Contain banned ingredients|
|Hong Kong Technological Achievement Award(2014)||Davos Global Innovation Pioneer (2015)||Geneva International Inventions 43rd Grand Prix Winner (2015)||World Intellectual Property Organization Gold Medal (2016)||APEC & GIC Future Maker (2016)||Unreasonable Impact (2017)|