Lip fillers must be made prescription-only like botox in order to protect vulnerable people from being exploited, MPs warn today.
The Commons Health Select Committee has called for action to reduce the “conveyor belt” approach to non-surgical cosmetic procedures – such as Botox injections or chemical peels – by bringing forward a licensing regime for providers.
This should also include minimum training standards for people providing these services and a “cooling off” period between consent and providing the procedure, MPs said.
Fillers are a non-surgical treatment that fill lines and wrinkles.
In a warning issued today after an inquiry, Commons Health Select Committee chairman Jeremy Hunt said: “The Government must act urgently to end the situation where anyone can carry out non-surgical cosmetic procedures, regardless of training or qualifications.
“We heard of some distressing experiences – a conveyor belt approach with procedures carried out with no questions asked, procedures that have gone wrong, the use of filthy premises.
“It was clear throughout our inquiry that some groups are particularly vulnerable to exploitation in this growing market that has gone largely unregulated.
“We need a timetable now for a licensing regime with patient safety at its centre to reduce those risks.”
A new report from the committee has urged the Government to introduce a law so “commercial images” which feature bodies which have been edited. This also includes changing skin tone.
The law would force companies to have a logo on the edited image to show it has been altered.
Meanwhile the Government should review the growing use of anabolic steroids for cosmetic purposes, the group said. MPs proposed a safety campaign for those at risk.
It comes after senior Tory MP and chairwoman of the Women and Equalities Committee Caroline Nokes called for “some form of licensing or regulation” to govern aesthetic cosmetic non-surgical procedures.
She told MPs in the Commons: “I can vividly remember visiting a doctor in my constituency and talking to her about the experience she had when a patient came to see her, after having had far too much lip filler placed into her lips by an unqualified, inexperienced practitioner and the poor girl’s lips had frankly exploded, leaving her permanently scarred, leaving her with the prospect of many years of corrective surgery to try and rebuild her face and that’s the stark reality.”
“We’re talking about tattooing, about Botox, about laser treatment. Just imagine the damage that high-powered lasers can do to somebody’s skin when in unqualified, untrained hands.”