Japanese Manufacturer of Skin-Whiteners Has a Blotchy Mess on Its Hands

Kanebo Cosmetics confirms another 1,233 customers developed blotchy skin after using its products

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Yoshikazu Tsuno / AFP / Getty Images

Kanebo president Masumi Natsusaka apologises for a recall of products blamed for leaving thousands of customers with skin blotches at a press conference in Tokyo on September 11, 2013.

The blotch count keeps rising for a Japanese manufacturer of skin-whitening products. Kanebo Cosmetics Inc. confirmed on Monday that another 1,233 customers had developed blotchy skin after using a whitening chemical substance called 4-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-2-butanone, which the company refers to as Rhododenol, reports the Japan Times.

Kanebo has confirmed 15,192 cases to date, and in a series of candid press releases, has broken down the symptoms by severity, from widespread blotches across the face and hands, to smaller patches at least 5 cm in diameter, to “other.”

[Japan Times]


So glad this is a thorough press release.  Too bad Time doesn't do journalism and answer the questions... like Why do people use this? Where do they use it?  What does it cost? What is it costing the company? How are products like this regulated in Japan?  Guess it's cheaper to just publish the press releases then to hire a journalist.