Four beauty products no longer allowed to be sold in Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Division (NPRA) of the Health Ministry has cancelled the notification of four cosmetic products because they were found to contain scheduled poisons and thus are no longer allowed to be sold in Malaysia.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the four products are BL Skincare Day Cream 1 which was found to contain hydroquinone and tretinoin, while the other three products are Biela Beauty Glowing Night Cream, BL Skincare Day Cream 2 and BL Skincare Night Cream respectively, which contained mercury.

"The notification of the cosmetic products involved has been revoked by the senior director of pharmaceutical services of the ministry and that it is no longer allowed to be sold in Malaysia," he said in a statement.

Dr Noor Hisham said members of the public who are using these cosmetic products are advised to immediately stop using them and seek advice from health professionals if they experienced any discomfort or adverse effects.

According to him, hydroquinone can cause redness on the part of the skin where it is rubbed; discomfort; unwanted skin discoloration; skin becoming hypersensitive; and inhibits the process of pigmentation (depigmentation) which reduces skin protection from harmful UV rays and increasing the risk of skin cancer.

The use of tretinoin without the supervision of a health professional can cause the rubbed part of the skin to become red, uncomfortable, sore, flaky and hypersensitive to sunlight, he said.

"Mercury is banned in cosmetic products because it can be harmful to health. It can be absorbed into the body and cause damage to the kidneys and nervous system and can interfere with the brain development of young or unborn children," he said.

He said mercury can also cause rashes, irritation and other changes to the skin.

Dr Noor Hisham said the sellers and distributors of these cosmetic products should stop their sale and distribution immediately for violating the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulations 1984.

An individual who commits an offence under the regulation is liable to a fine not exceeding RM25,000 or imprisonment not exceeding three years or both for the first offence, and to a fine not exceeding RM50,000 or imprisonment not exceeding five years or both for subsequent offences.

Companies that commit the offence can be fined up to RM50,000 for the first time and fined up to RM100,000 for subsequent offences.

The public is encouraged to check the notification status of a cosmetic product by browsing the NPRA official website at or through the “NPRA product status” application which can be downloaded from the Google Play Store. - Bernama

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