Cosmetic products warning in Sandwell
Published on 17th October 2012
Nearly three-quarters of cosmetic products tested by trading standards in Sandwell failed to comply with the law, it has been revealed.
An investigation into the safety and compliance of imported ethnic cosmetic products found that nearly three quarters of the products sampled failed to comply the law.
Fifteen cosmetic samples were taken and submitted to a laboratory for analysis. Of those 15 samples 11 were found to in breach of the regulations.
In one case an exfoliating soap claimed to be 'enriched with apricot extracts and vitamins' but when it was tested no vitamins were found in the product.
A bottle of nail varnish was reported by the analyst to contain toluene, however, the required safety warning was missing.
Toluene is a chemical which may cause skin irritation, dizziness, headaches or nausea if inhaled and children are considered to be more vulnerable to the effects than adults. A product containing this chemical must be marked with the safety warning ''To be used by adults only''.
Appropriate safety warnings are important to ensure that the products are used correctly, or avoided by people with certain intolerances.
If a consumer was to suffer an allergic reaction then traceability would be essential to identify the manufacturer or importer and to prevent further problems.
Cabinet member for neighbourhood services Councillor Ian Jones said ''Research has shown that the average consumer uses around 10 cosmetic or personal care products each day.
"Consumers are entitled to assume that every cosmetic product is safe, contain what they say they do and meet any specific claims they make. I am pleased to say that trading standards are ensuring that cosmetic products sold in Sandwell are safe.''
Other products were found to have no batch code or manufacturer details for traceability and another product was found to have medical claims but it wasn't licensed by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency as it should have been.
Bob Charnley, Trading Standards Manager, added: "Businesses are co-operating with our investigations and the offending items have all been voluntarily removed from sale.
"Retailers of cosmetic products must ensure they buy from reputable wholesalers and importers and make sure they get itemised invoices. Businesses should seek advice from trading standards on how to comply with the law."
All cosmetic products brought into the UK should have been assessed for safety by a registered competent practitioner.
Products produced for non EU countries may well not comply with these safety laws. Businesses seeking advice can contact Trading Standards on 0845 3597522.