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Popular Korean cosmetic brand Etude House recalls product in Singapore

SINGAPORE ― Popular Korean brand Etude House has recalled one of its cosmetic products in Singapore, after excessive metal traces above the permissible level were found in it.

Popular Korean cosmetic brand Etude House recalls product in Singapore

Etude House Singapore said that “only a small portion” of Etude House AC Cleanup Mild Concealer under the lot number AAH was distributed here. Photo: Etude House Facebook page

SINGAPORE ― Popular Korean brand Etude House has recalled one of its cosmetic products in Singapore,after excessive metal traces above the permissible level were found in it.

Etude House Korea announced earlier this week that it has suspended and recalled two of its products: Etude House AC Clean-Up Mild Concealer and Etude House Drawing Eyebrow Duo No 3 Gray Brown. 

“The decision of suspension and recall followed upon finding traces of excessive antimony in them and voluntarily reporting the same to the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety,” said Etude House Singapore in a media statement on Wednesday (March 21).

The two cosmetic products recalled by Etude House. Photo: Etude House

Etude House’s products are supplied by Korean cosmetics firm Amorepacific.

The affected products from Etude House in the current recall were manufactured and supplied by Hwasung Cosmetics, one of the Amorepacific’s subcontractors. 

Etude House Singapore said that “only a small portion” of Etude House AC Cleanup Mild Concealer under the lot number AAH was distributed here.

Most of the products were distributed in South Korea, the company added. The company told TODAY that the Etude House Drawing Eyebrow Duo No 3 Gray Brown is not distributed to Singapore. 

“Customers who have purchased the product included in the recall list can return products for a full refund or an exchange for another product at the official Etude House in Singapore,” said the company.

“Ensuring the safety and quality of all products is of utmost importance to us. We will continue to make every effort to ensure that we take appropriate actions during the recall process”.

Asked by TODAY, if customers who bought the recalled products from South Korea are able to do a refund or exchange, a spokesperson from Etude House Singapore said they may visit their stores to "exchange for a different product of the same amount or lower or receive a full refund".

Local PR professional Lim Shi Min, who has five of the eyebrow pencils, is surprised at the recall.

“I stock up on it every time I go to Korea,” said the 32-year-old, who just bought the eyebrow pencils earlier this month. “I use them every day and have five of those in my make-up drawer. I hope I still can get a refund even though I bought them in Korea and do not have the receipts anymore.”

On Tuesday, Amorepacific apologised after several of its cosmetic products were found to contain metal traces above the permissible level.

According to South Korea’s Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, six products – including skin concealers and eyebrow pencils from Aritaum and Etude House, cosmetic brands under Amorepacific – contained antimony exceeding the permissible level of 10 microgrammes per gram.

Antimony is found in consumer products, including batteries and electrical appliances, and has been detected in food packaging and toys.

Research has shown that chronic exposure to antimony in the air can lead to irritation of the skin, eyes, and lungs while drinking high levels of the metal in water could cause vomiting and abdominal pain. 

“We apologise for the incident, we should have put all our focus on quality assurance,” said Amorepacific in a media statement earlier this week.

“We will do our best to prevent similar cases from happening again”.

On Monday, the South Korean ministry banned the sales of 13 cosmetic products sold at eight companies including Amorepacific and ordered a recall. Among the companies included Aritaum, Etude House, Skinfood, and 3CE. 

The Skinfood product that was recalled in South Korea is the Cherry Full Lip Liner. However the product is not launched in Singapore, a spokesperson told TODAY. 

List of products recalled from Etude House: 

AC Clean Up Mild Concealer, item code: AAH (2021.01.08) 

Drawing Eyebrow Duo #3 Greybrown, item code: GLG (2020.12.17)

List of products recalled from Aritaum: 

Full Cover Stick Concealer #1 Light Beige, item code: AAH (2021.01.12), BAH (2021.01.30), CBH (2021.02.11) 

Full Cover Cream Concealer #2 Natural Beige, item code: ELG (2020.12.17)

Full Cover Cream Concealer #1, item code: GLG (2020.12.14), AAH (2021.01.30)

Full Cover Cream Concealer #2, item code: AAH (2021.01.14) 

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