Amazon has pulled more than a dozen skin-lightening products with dangerous levels of mercury off its website after Minnesota public-health and environmental activists raised concerns.
The company's change came after two groups, the BeautyWell Project and the state branch of the Sierra Club, delivered a petition on Wednesday with over 23,000 signatures to Amazon's fulfillment center in Shakopee, Minnesota Public Radio News reported.
"For a large retail company selling toxic products to individuals of color, I think it's so wrong. And these are illegal products," said Amira Adawe, founder of the BeautyWell Project, who has been educating women on the hazards of creams intended to lighten their skin for about eight years.
Amazon spokeswoman Cecilia Fan said sellers who use their site must follow the proper guidelines.
"And those who don't will be subject to action, including potential removal of their account. The products in question are no longer available," she said in an emailed statement Friday.
Fan also pointed out the company's policy that bans suppliers from selling hazardous products, including ones containing mercury.
On the same day of delivering the petition, the organizations also took out a full-page ad in a local newspaper demanding that the Seattle-based company stop selling toxic skin-lightening creams. The ad had three words in bold print: "Dangerous, racist, and illegal."
Many such creams remain popular among some communities of color despite containing mercury. Adawe, who has worked on this issue for years locally, is now focused on targeting the retail giants.
She collaborated with the Sierra Club, an environmental advocacy group, in addition to the Mercury Policy Project to examine the skin-lightening creams sold on the Amazon site. Out of the 24 that were tested, 15 showed high levels of mercury.
Such products are not heavily regulated despite having illegal toxins in them, said Mary Blitzer of the local Sierra Club branch.
Adawe said in addition to public health concerns, "it's a racial thing that keeps encouraging that people should change their skin color, and we don't want to see that."
She added that the ultimate test is whether the products remain off Amazon's site for good. As of Thursday evening, all but one of the 15 products appeared to be removed from the site.
Hungary's National Blue Trail has been selected among National Geographic's best dream tourism destinations of 2020, local media reported here on Friday.
National Geographic picked the planet's 25 most exciting destinations for the year ahead, and Hungary's Blue Trail is among them, major Hungarian media Origo Index and HVG reported.
"Despite its lack of soaring peaks (the highest is 3,327-foot Mount Kekes), Hungary is a dream hiking destination thanks to the country's National Blue Trail," National Geographic said on its Travel website.
Meandering about 700 miles from Irottko Mountain, on the western border with Austria, to the northeastern village of Hollohaza near Slovakia, the Blue Trail (Kektura in Hungarian) is a wonderfully diverse web of paths labeled with white-and-blue-striped waymarkers, read the description on the National Geographic website.
"Originating in 1938 and recognized as Europe's first long-distance trail, it's part of the nearly 6,500-mile European long-distance walking route E4, which begins in Spain and ends (with ferry connections) in Cyprus," it added.
Italian luxury sports car manufacturer Ferrari launched its new model Roma, a coupe meant to revive "the carefree lifestyle of 1950s and 1960s Rome" after which it has been named, the company announced on Thursday.
Ferrari Roma is empowered with a V8 turbo engine that reaches 620 horsepower at 7,500 rpm, and is coupled with the new 8-speed DCT gearbox that was introduced on the SF 90 Stradale.
It would bring the coupe from zero to 100 km in 3.4 seconds, said the company.
The Roma is the fifth new model launched by the carmaker so far in 2019.
Daraz Bangladesh, known as the country’s biggest online marketplace and shopping hub, is going to host world’s biggest sale campaign “11.11” in the country on Monday.
Bangladesh National ODI Cricket Team Captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza is set to inaugurate the campaign through Facebook Live at 11:30pm on Sunday.
The daylong campaign will create the most worthy vibe of 24-hour online shopping experience when lots of fascinating deals will be unblocked.
The campaign was first launched by Daraz’s parent company Alibaba Group in 2009 worldwide.
Daraz first hosted the international campaign in Bangladesh in 2018 - on both its website daraz.com.bd and their official app.
During the last year’s “11.11” campaign, Bangladeshi customers bought products worth Tk 45 crore with 1.20 lakh orders.
This year, Daraz will celebrate the campaign with even bigger arrangement with the collective efforts of 3,500 employees and 15,000 sellers.
The mega sale event will provide a great shopping experience with more than 70 lakh products and lucrative offers. The special attraction includes Tk 11 Deal, Pre-sale Discount, Tk 1 Game, Double Tk Voucher, Shake-Shake Voucher, Happy Hour Voucher, Big Sale Time from 9pm to 12am and free deliveries on specific products.