Clarks is recalling a total of eight styles of its women’s shoes because some sample testing of these items revealed excess levels of hazardous chemicals benzidine or dimethoxybenzidine, according to a press release issued by the British shoe manufacturer on Thursday.
The chemicals, which are found in certain azo dyes used to color the footwear, are toxic and prolonged and direct contact with the shoes’ upper material may cause adverse health effects for the wearer. The synthetic chemical benzidine (and the derivative dimethoxybenzidine) has not been sold in the United States since the mid-1970s because it is potentially cancer-causing, according to the National Cancer Institute.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a press release saying that consumers should immediately stop wearing the shoes. About 113,000 pairs were sold in the U.S. and another 10,000 in Canada.
The safety recall affects the lines called Breeze (in the Americas) and Brinkley (outside the Americas), all in navy or dark navy blue colors and introduced for the spring-summer 2022 season. The specific products are Brinkley Step in navy (26168803); Breeze Step in navy (article number 26166904); Breeze Step in navy/white (article number 26165290); Breeze Step in dark navy (article number 26166718); Breeze Ave in dark navy (article number 26165269); Brinkley Ave in dark navy (article number 26166623); Brinkley Shore in navy (article number 26166596); and Breeze Shore in navy (article number 26164910).
The identifying eight-digit article number is the first eight digits of a 12-digit number found under the size and fit information and can be located on the fixed label inside the footwear.
Clarks is working with retail partners to contact as many people that purchased the shoes directly as possible. The shoes, which are manufactured in China, were sold for about $65 at Clarks outlet stores and other major retailers, including Macy’s, JC Penney, Kohl’s, QVC, Shoe Carnival, DSW and Zappos, as well as online at ClarksUSA.com and Amazon.com from February 2022 to October 2022.
Customers who have a pair of the shoes being recalled should visit the company’s recall website and follow the step-by-step guide to getting a refund, or visit www.ClarksUSA.com and click “Recall” at the bottom of the page for more information. For questions about the shoes or the return process, consumers are encouraged to contact Clarks via e-mail at email@example.com. U.S. customers can also call the company toll-free at 800-480-5992 from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET.
Consumers will need to upload a photo of their shoes in order to determine if they are included in this recall. If included in the recall, Clarks will send consumers free shipping materials and a prepaid shipping label to send back the shoes. Consumers may also return their shoes to the place where purchased.