Potentially lethal skin whitening products seized by Newham Trading Standards

24 April 2015 in Community safety and Health
The highest level of a potentially lethal banned chemical was found in a beauty product at a Newham store during a London-wide crack down on dangerous skin products.
Newham Trading Standards seized the product Fair & White Gel Crème, from a store, in Barking Road, Upton Park, earlier this year and tests found it to contain 8.2 per cent of hydroquinone – a toxin that could lead to skin cancer and liver damage. The use of hydroquinone is banned in the UK and in a number of other countries around the world.

Hydroquinone was also discovered in products on sale in two other Newham premises:
  • Easy White, containing 3.6 per cent of the toxin, was taken from another shop in Green Street, Upton Park
  • The ingredients for Maxi Peel, taken from a supermarket in Plaistow Road, Plaistow, stated it contained two per cent hydroquinone.
During the London-wide campaign, funded by the Department for Business Industry and Skills, Newham Trading Standards also seized Likas Soap and Ponds White Beauty BB products from stores for not having the correct labelling.

The council is now considering taking legal action against the store owners and has also requested information about product suppliers so that action can be taken to stop the distribution of these products across the country. Stores and suppliers can face a fine and imprisonment for selling these products.

Councillor Ian Corbett, mayoral advisor for environment and leisure, said: “Our residents need the peace of mind that any cosmetic product they buy is safe to use.

“Through the actions of our trading standards team these potentially lethal items have been removed off the shelves of these shops. This project is continuing because we have a duty of care to our residents and we will take the necessary steps to protect them from dangerous cosmetic products.”