China NMPA posted an article "Talk about whitening cosmetics and whitening agents" on 16th Dec, 2021, explained the reason of canceling the registration of 4-(1-Phenylethyl)-benzene-1,3-diol, known as SymWhite377 as a cosmetic ingredient.
Why did China canceled the registration of SymWhite377?
Guangxi Province MPA published a No.8 Order on Dec 10th, 2021, claiming that SymWhite377 was registered in China as a whitening cosmetic ingredient, but actually used in some products sold as normal cosmetic. So the actual efficacy does not match the registered content, and it's against "Cosmetics supervision and management law". So Guangxi Province canceled the registration of SymWhite377, and all the cosmetics containing this substances should be called back according to "Cosmetics supervision and management law".
Since Guangxi Province canceled the registration of SymWhite377, it will be no longer in the permitted list of cosmetic ingredients in China. Analysis of relevant sources guessed that China maybe will ban this substance. But currently we still don't know if this substance can be registered again or totally banned in the future.
To answer people's questions, NMPA posted an article "Talk about whitening cosmetics and whitening agents" on 16th Dec, 2021, explained the reason of canceling the registration of SymWhite377 again and named some other substance of whitening ingredients, including arbutin, nicotinamide, phloroglucuronide, phenethylresorcinol, ascorbic acid (i.e. vitamin C), ascorbyl glucoside, 3-o-ethyl ascorbic acid, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, coagulic acid, potassium methoxysalicylate, red myrrh alcohol, but still didn't say if SymWhite377 can be registered again.
For now, we can only wait for the NMPA to release a list of whitening ingredients. However, an industry insider revealed that "the list of whitening agents was discussed many years ago, and then somehow it was left untouched." And although the relevant departments are preparing a list of whitening ingredients, but she believes that it is not clear when the list of whitening ingredients, "so many new regulations out, there are many regulations interpretation not out, there is always an urgency sort."