The Standard Group Plc is a multi-media organization with investments in media platforms spanning newspaper print operations, television, radio broadcasting, digital and online services. The Standard Group is recognized as a leading multi-media house in Kenya with a key influence in matters of national and international interest.
  • Standard Group Plc HQ Office,
  • The Standard Group Center,Mombasa Road.
  • P.O Box 30080-00100,Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Telephone number: 0203222111, 0719012111
  • Email: [email protected]

Dangerous beauty products that you should avoid

 Photo: Courtesy

Young Kenyan women craving to look pretty continue to use some cosmetics that pose danger to their bodies. Some products sold in cosmetic shops have adverse effects on human skin.

In major towns in East Africa, skin medications are used as cosmetics without supervision due to ignorance by the users. Skin treatment ointments and lotions are potent substances used to treat only certain skin conditions or diseases. They are not meant to be used as cosmetics.

According to dermatologists, the potency of the ointments varies from one formation or formulation to another. They might be marked as Dermovate, Diprosone, Betnovate, Nerisone, Mediven or Hydrocortisone. However, they are strictly prescrip­tion products that are used to treat certain diseases, which means a doc­tor decides when, where and for how long a particular product is to be used, says Melanie Miyanji, a consultant dermatologist and venereologist.

Dr Miyanji is a former medical consultant at the Aga Khan University Hospital and the chairperson of the Kenya Society of Cosmetology and Allergology. She says wrong use of skin products has serious consequences. Using them for longer than the specified time is also dangerous. She says it is advisable for a medical doctor to monitor those treating their skins with ointments to ensure they do it correctly. “It is distressing to see these products being used as cosmetics, with some using them to embellish their faces,” she says.

Women are reminded that the creams are only given for specific skin diseases and can cause problems when used for other purposes.

“Corticosteroid preparations may cause skin problems,” explains Nicholas Ochieng’, a dermatology lecturer at the Kenya Medical Train­ing Centre (KMTC).

These, says Dr Ochieng, who also works at the Kenyatta National Hospital, include thinning of the skin, which consequently breaks easily and does not heal well. They also induce stretch-marks.

He says the substance can easily damage the upper layer of the skin as well as cause rashes. It can also exacerbate other skin infections  and spread bacterial, viral and fungal infections.

“The worst effect is that they can be absorbed into the bloodstream, hence causing problems to the rest of the body. The products can mask skin dis­eases, impeding or delaying diagno­sis, leading to inappropriate treatment. This leads to progression of a disease and may cause irreversible damage,” he says.

Products marketed as having magical and imme­diate effects may actually be more potent and thus have a high toxicity level. This should raise the alarm among users. To be safe, women should seek a doctor’s consent before using any cosmetics.

Related Topics


Similar Articles


Recommended Articles