According to a press statement sent from the desk of Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Bin Abdullah, the notifications for the seven products were promptly cancelled following the detection of mercury.
The notifications were held by five companies: Thefjura Marketing, Rohban Trade Sdn. Bhd., Qalbu Ocean Enterprise, Glowing Expert Apple Diamond and Lurveya Sdn. Bhd.
It added that the products had since been banned for sale in Malaysia.
According to NPRA’s press statement, the seven products listed were: Fjura-Face Polish Treatment, Dnars Golden Cream, Glow Glowing N Glowing, Apple Diamond Day Loose, 3rd Series Yanko Fade Out Cream Day Cream, 5th Series Yanko Fade Out Cream Day Cream and 7th Yanko Series Whitening Cream Day.
Often, cosmetics with mercury are marketed as skin whitening and brightening creams even though it is a toxic substance that poses a significant threat to human health, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO)
Datuk Noor Hisham said: “Mercury is prohibited in cosmetic products because it can be harmful to health. Mercury can absorb into the body and cause damage to the kidneys and nervous system. It can also interfere with the development of the brain of young or unborn children. It can also cause rash, irritation and other changes in the skin”
Public and distributors warned
NPRA has advised the public to refrain from buying and using these cosmetics products. Additionally, it urged consumers who owned the products to stop using them immediately and to seek the advice of a health professional if they experienced any discomfort or adverse effects,
It also warned sellers and distributors to stop peddling the toxic products immediately. It added that continuing to distribute these products would violate the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulation of 1984.
According to the statement, an individual found to be committing an offence under the regulations can be fined up to a maximum of RM25,000 ($6,127) and face up three years imprisonment.
For second or subsequent offences shall be liable on conviction to a find up to RM50,000 ($12,254) and face up to five years imprisonment.
A company that is found guilty of the crime can be fined up to RM50,000 ($12,254) for the first offence and fined up to a maximum of RM100,000 ($24,507) for subsequent offences.