From under the counter in a black plastic bag: Banaras Hussain hands over a powerful cream that could harm the liver and nervous system
Illegal skin-whitening creams are being sold by high street cosmetics shops despite a number of prosecutions, a BBC undercover investigation has revealed.
Shaba Hair and Cosmetics stores have been fined for dealing in creams containing hydroquinone but researchers found outlets continuing to sell them.
Products containing hydroquinone can damage the liver and nervous system.
Trading Standards officials said there was “no excuse” for selling the creams. Shaba refused to comment.
Skin-lightening products containing hydroquinone are widely used throughout India and sub-Saharan Africa – although some countries have outlawed the ingredient.
Shaba director Banaras Hussain has been prosecuted for selling the banned creams at his shops on three previous occasions – in Enfield, Dalston and Peckham.
Made in the Congo
He was fined £11,792 over the Peckham sales alone, and is due in court on 1 April for sentencing after pleading guilty to 33 offences related to the Dalston shop.
But after a tip-off, the BBC found Shaba outlets continuing to deal in banned skin lightening creams under the auspices of Mr Hussain.
At Shaba Hair and Cosmetics (Peckham) an undercover researcher was sold a jar of ‘Caro Light’ cream priced at £9.99 that listed hydroquinone as an ingredient.
Manufactured in the Democratic Republic of Congo, when tested it was found to contain 4.6% hydroquinone – more than twice as powerful as …read more
Source:: BBC world news feed