Police Warn UK Consumers of Dangerous Fake Beauty Products on Sale

Police Warn UK Consumers of Dangerous Fake Beauty Products on Sale

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It has come to our attention that the City of London Police have warned about the rise in fake cosmetic goods that contain harmful substances such as human urine and rat droppings and toxic chemicals such as arsenic, mercury and cyanide. Make-up, sun cream and perfumes being high on the list. As a result the Police have launched an awareness campaign called ‘Wake up – don’t fake up!’.

The ‘Wake up – don’t fake up!’ campaign has been launched to educate and warn consumers of the risks associated with purchasing these fake products and how to look out for them.

As the growth of the online market is continuing to grow rapidly, so are the amount of fake beauty products. The City of London Police have estimated that UK consumers spend at least £90 million each year on fake goods in general.

In 2014 the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) at City of London Police broke up a criminal operation that was suspected of importing and selling counterfeit goods to the UK. The PIPCU team seized a shipping container and was found to have contained what is believed to be more than 4,700 fake versions of one of the UK’s most popular beauty brands. These beauty products included; foundation, bronzer, lip gloss, eye shadow and eyebrow pencils.

Harmful Substances Found Within Fake Beauty Products

The harmful substances and chemicals that have been added to the fake beauty products including, but not limited to; mascaras, eye liners, foundations, lip glosses, beauty creams etc. can seriously harm you and lead to swelling, rashes and in serious cases can lead to lethal poisoning. Purchasing these products can seriously damage your health! Tests on fake perfumes have found human urine present in the formula and this could be due to either being used as a bulking agent or due to the very unhygienic conditions within the illegal laboratories that are set up overseas with no regulation or policing. These laboratories are only set up to make money from the creation and selling of fake beauty products and to then filter the money made, back in to organised crime.

Laboratory making fake beauty products
Laboratory making fake beauty products. Image: BBC

It is no secret that fake beauty products have become increasingly common and are easily accessible and available on auction sites such as eBay and Amazon and social media, posing as the real thing (to deceive consumers) but a great deal cheaper. The criminals selling these goods work hard to make sure these fake beauty goods look exactly like the real products and are even using generic stock images to make consumers believe that these products are authentic.

Identity Theft

The damage that the purchase of these fake beauty products can cause doesn’t stop with damaging health. The City of London Police have also warned that consumers who use these purpose built websites to buy fake goods are at risk of having their identities stolen.

Detective Superintendent Maria Woodall: ”Not only could these products have serious implications to your health and wellbeing but by simply going online and buying from a rogue site or dealer, your personal and financial information is at risk. We have had victims who have bought fake items online only to discover later that the criminals behind the site have used their payment details to make further purchases or even use their personal details to set up hundreds of illegal sites selling counterfeit goods.” – Telegraph

Our tips:

If a product is a great deal cheaper, please don’t be fooled…if it’s too good to be true, it is more than likely fake. Det Supt Maria Woodall: “Most luxury brands don’t reduce their prices” – BBC

Although authenticating products has become more challenging as consumers are unable to physically inspect items before purchasing them online, If you are unsure about the seller, try contacting the brand (of the product for sale) themselves and asking if they know if the particular seller of the product in a genuine and authorised stockist of their products. These brands or their authorised distributors will have this information to accessible.

How to identify a website selling fake goods. These websites or marketplace selling accounts like eBay and Amazon are created purposely to sell fake beauty products and are made very quickly without care. Often there are lots of spelling mistakes, this is one identifier, another is that when you go to the checkout of the website that it has no HTTPS in your URL address bar.

The small saving made to you financially when purchasing fake beauty products is certainly not worth your health or your identity.


Official Stockist

At forever beaux we are an official stockist of all the brands and products that we stock. Our products are carefully sourced from the brands themselves or official brand distributors. www.foreverbeaux.com

I love all things beauty and trying new brands, new beauty fads and new beauty treatments both in and out of a salon. My favourite beauty brand is Dior. I love my family and friends, animals and Starbucks coffee, white cafe mocha to be precise and I have a pet fish. I have a degree in: Bachelor of Arts (BA), Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts with honors and CIM – CAM Diploma in Digital Marketing My secret...I have an inner geek and love keeping up to date with digital marketing and SEO.


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