Consumers Cautioned Against Using Cosmetic Product Containing Scheduled Poison

News categories: 
Released date: 
Wednesday, 9 July 2014



The public is advised to avoid buying and using the following cosmetic product:


Product Name

Notification Number

Scheduled Poison Detected


Name of Product Notification


Name of Manufacturer


Dermaceutic Spot Cream


Hydroquinone and Tretinoin

Parvus Sdn. Bhd.

Dermosciences, Ireland.



Dermaceutic Spot  Peel Cream


Hydroquinone and Tretinoin

Parvus Sdn. Bhd.

Dermosciences, Ireland



The cosmetic products above have been tested and found to contain scheduled poison hydroquinone and tretinoin, which are prohibited in cosmetic products. These products are no longer allowed to be sold in Malaysia.

Products containing hydroquinone and/or tretinoin are classified as pharmaceutical products that requires registration with the Drug Control Authority (DCA) and can only be used under the advice of a healthcare professional. Hydroquinone is commonly used for the skin in hyperpigmentation conditions, while tretinoin is used for treatment in acne vulgaris. Unsupervised use of preparations containing hydroquinone and/or tretinoin may cause unwanted side-effects.

Cosmetic products adulterated with hydroquinone typically marketed for skin lightening, as well as, to treat blemishes and uneven skin tone.  Hydroquinone can cause skin redness, discomfort, skin discoloration, hypersensitivity and a gradual blue-black darkening of the skin. Hydroquinone inhibits the pigmentation process (depigmentation) which reduces the skin’s ability to be protected from harmful UV rays, thus, increasing the risk of skin cancer.

Cosmetic products adulterated with tretinoin are commonly promoted for use in acne and to reduce wrinkles. Preparations containing tretinoin should only be used under the supervision of healthcare profesionals. The unsupervised usage of tretinoin can cause redness to the skin, discomfort, stinging, peeling and sensitivity to sunlight.

The company responsible for placing the product in the market has been instructed to immediately halt the sale and supply of the product mentioned and remove all physical stocks from the market within 72 hours.

Anyone who is in possession of this product is advised to immediately cease selling/distributing/using it. Sellers are reminded that posession of this product  is an offence under the Control Of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulations 1984. Any individual who commits an offence under these Regulations can be fined up to a maximum of RM25,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 years or both, and for a second or subsequent offence he shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding RM50,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years or to both. A company found guilty can be fined up to RM50,000 for the first offence and fined up to a maximum of RM100,000 for a subsequent offence.

Consumers are advised to contact the National Pharmaceutical Control Bureau (NPCB) at 03-78835532/5533/5537 if they experience any allergic reactions or adverse events from use of cosmetic products.

Pharmaceutical Services Division
Ministry of Health Malaysia

10 June 2014


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