Cannabis cosmetics under question in Malaysia

By Lucy Whitehouse

- Last updated on GMT

Cannabis cosmetics under question in Malaysia

Related tags Kuala lumpur

With interest in the potential of cannabis in cosmetics products on the rise across the globally, Malaysia’s health ministry was recently forced to investigate claims that domestic retailers have been illegally selling such items.

Responding to a report that lipsticks, body lotions and lip glosses containing cannabis had been on sale at the country’s major international airport (Kuala Lumpur International Airport, KLIA and KLIA2), the health ministry carried out an inspection of 22 outlets.

It reportedly found none to be retailing products containing cannabis, according to health ministry director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

Cannabis cosmetics

Cannabis extract is becoming something of an ingredient du jour among cosmetics manufacturers, with non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD) resin extract often heralded for its reported capacity to treat various skin conditions, including acne, psoriasis, eczema and dry skin.

Since the US Department of Health and Human Services awarded Patent #6,630,507 for CBD and other cannabinoids back in October of 2003, the application of cannabis extracts within cosmetics formulation has been on the rise both in North America and across the globe.

Hemp extract has become a focus for many cosmetic manufacturers as they find themselves pushed increasingly to draw on more innovative ingredients in a bid to shake up the saturated natural and organic market.

CBD also has various health applications, with studies having shown it can alleviate seizure disorders, anxiety and inflammation.

Investigation details

Malaysia’s recent crackdown on potential cannabis-containing cosmetics suggests it is one nation that is not yet ready to welcome the rise of hemp’s potential in the industry.

Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah explained that the country’s FDA equivalent, the BPF, has been helping the health ministry and the industry in its bid to regulate the sale of such items.

The cyber pharmaceutical section, BPF and the ministry monitor websites and the social media to detect those dealing in such cosmetic products without notification, as well as unregistered medicines online," ​he said.

"Last year, several websites and Facebook sites selling cosmetics containing cannabis were detected and reported to the police narcotics division​."

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