Valisure, a New Haven, Connecticut-based online pharmacy, examined 260 bottles of hand sanitizers from 168 brands and found 17% contained detectable levels of benzene. Benzene, on par with asbestos, is a known human carcinogen.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) define benzene as a carcinogen, and lists “inhalation, skin absorption, ingestion, skin and/or eye contact” as routes of exposure.
The National Institutes of Health’s genome research arm states a “carcinogen is a specific chemical or physical agent that has the ability to cause cancer.”
Valisure’s testing found 44 batches that contained the highest level of benzene at 16.1 parts per million (ppm). That is more than eight times the Food and Drug Administration’s permitted interim limit of 2 ppm for benzene only in hand sanitizers.
“Consumer use of hand sanitizers has increased significantly during the coronavirus pandemic and while it is important that consumers have access to products that help ensure personal and public safety, it is of utmost importance that consumers have access to products that are safe and not contaminated,” said David Light, founder and chief executive officer of Valisure.
Valisure said these hand sanitizer brands have the highest levels of benzene:
2. Scentsational Soaps & Candles Inc.
5. The Creme Shop
6. Star Wars Mandalorian
7. Body Prescriptions
8. Born Basic
9. Beauty Concepts
11. Miami Carry On
12. Natural Wunderz
15. Hand Clean 100