The content examination has revealed that skin-whitening creams can contain a bleaching agent called hydroquinone which can seriously harm the skin. Following this, LGA (Local Government Authorities) in UK have banned such creams.
Harmful Effects Of Fake Skin Lightening Cream
According to the LGA, the seized creams may contain mercury which is well-known for its poisonous nature. The seized products are considered the biological equivalent of paint stripper, which can remove the top layer of the skin completely, thereby increasing the risk of cancer. Furthermore, illegal skin lightening cream can also cause liver and kidney damage.
Both the local government association and The British Skin Foundation are advising people to visit their nearest physician if they have used such creams or have come into contact with them. They further advised customers to steer clear of shady retailers who often sell such products in car boot sales and market stalls.
What even more alarming is the fact that the manufactures don’t mention the correct quantity of ingredients they have used to produce such beauty items hence putting the user at a higher risk.
Products containing hydroquinone, steroids, or mercury are banned for over the counter sale because of their potential side effects and need a prescription from a doctor to buy or sell it.
In a series of raids conducted over the past few years, mass quantities of these products have been seized. In a raid in Dagenham resulted in the seizure of 360 products that contained hydroquinone and failed to meet EU standards. The owner was fined £6,500 and ordered to pay £8,010 to the council, reportedly.
According to media reports, in 2018 a raid had resulted in the seizure of 2,900 skin-whitening products that had been imported from Nigeria. The owner was jailed for selling them.
LGA response on the matter
Lisa Bickerstaffe a spokesperson for the Local Government Association while commenting on the issue stated that this is a very old problem and it is hard to tell whether this problem it was increasing or decreasing as there are numerous way to smuggle these products into the country. The products were also being sold online increasing the dangers for potential buyers.