Cosmetics manufacturers have a big role in glorifying fair complexion and demonizing dark one in our society and they do it for their commercial interest.
Manipulation of our emotions by the cosmetics industry and forcing us to indulge in complex is detestable. People irrespective of their gender have become so obsessed with fair skin that fairness injections, tablets and lasers are replacing fairness creams and fairness bleach creams in the market.
The government has announced to soon devise a policy and launch a crackdown on harmful and substandard beauty creams specially the ones that use excessive amount of mercury to temporarily brighten our skin by peeling and damaging it, which sometimes paves the way for skin cancer.
Minister of State for Climate Change Zartaj Gul in a recent press conference urged the fairness cream producers to stop making people fair anymore through counterfeit ways. “Stop playing with our skins.”
She said Pakistan was also a signatory of Minamata Convention of the United Nations which prohibited use of mercury.
The Minamata Convention on Mercury advocates halting usage of mercury to protect human health and the environment from its adverse effects.
Sharing the number of ratio of mercury in a cream, Gul said it should be 1 ppm part per million, while in most of the low quality creams here it was 54,000 ppm part per million.
“The companies should avoid using mercury to whiten skin,” she said talking to ARY News programme Bakhabar Sawera.
She revealed that not only local companies were found to be using harmful contents but the international ones were also not spared.
“We conducted assessment tests of 57 beauty creams and only three of them could pass the lab tests,” she said adding that she had a complete list of the harmful creams which she could provide for public awareness.
Warning the cosmetics industry, the minister had said a legislation was on the anvil against use of mercury in producing creams and the crackdown would be launched against its violators from January 1, next year.