The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Beauty, Aesthetics and Wellbeing has published a report into the cosmetic surgery industry and says it is time for the UK government to regulate it and put a stop to dangerous procedures.
The report says demand for non-surgical cosmetic procedures has "exploded" in recent years, partly as a result of Instagram and the rise of social media influencers and because of the popularity of reality TV shows such as Love Island which has included several young women, who have clearly had cosmetic surgery on their breasts and lips.
But most aesthetic training courses are unregulated, which puts patients at risk from people who have sometimes gained their training online.
The co-chair of the APPG, Labour MP Carolyn Harris said: "It's like the Wild West. We have people who are selling training courses which are not worth the paper they are written on. We have practitioners who are destroying the industry's reputation by practising completely unqualified and we have victims who are scarred for life".
Today we have published the final report in our inquiry into non-surgical cosmetic treatments. We urge the Government to act on our recommendations to protect consumers and support the industry. Maintaining the status quo is not an option.— APPG on Beauty, Aesthetics & Wellbeing (@BAW_APPG) July 21, 2021
Read more here: https://t.co/NjHudPUyJY pic.twitter.com/4LPgNDBDzF
The report makes 17 recommendations, and Patient Safety Minister Nadine Dorries promised to consider them closely.
Among the recommendations was one which called on the government to “set national minimum standards for the training that all practitioners must be required to undertake to provide aesthetic non-surgical cosmetic treatments”.
It may not be the same for them and I'm definitely projecting but wow it always blows my mind how much better people looked before the cheek & lip fillers, thread lifts etc.— City Aunt (@Keratile_) July 18, 2021
The report also said: “On-site medical oversight must be mandatory for aesthetic non-surgical cosmetic treatments using prescription-only medicines, where the treatments are performed under the oversight of the prescriber who has gained the accredited qualifications to prescribe, supervise and provide remedial medicines if necessary”.
The MPs on the APPG said the non-surgical cosmetic surgery ranged from Botox (botulinum toxin) injections to dermal (lip) fillers, PDO cogs - a type of facelift using polydioxanone - and thread lifts.
Real que..is plastic surgery that common place now? Or was that the criteria to enter #LoveIsland— #hobosexual (@moyzman89) July 14, 2021
They also called on the government to work with the industry “on the development of psychological pre-screening tests to cover a range of broader psychological vulnerabilities, and make these mandatory prior to a consumer undergoing an aesthetic non-surgical cosmetic treatment”.
Make-up artist Sarah Draa underwent a filler procedure on her lips five years ago, when she was 18.
She told the BBC: "I would say, 'I want Kylie Jenner lips, I want to look like Kim K'. There's so much pressure when you are seeing influencers on massive social media platforms every day".
She underwent the procedure at a low-budget firm but recalled: "It became so noticeably big, my lips looked like they had collapsed. I had to have more filler put into the other side to balance it out. I looked disfigured and it was so sore".
But why would Sharon even want Hugo? Does she not remember the ‘argument’ about plastic surgery which she and Faye spearheaded? #LoveIsland— MDM 💙 (@TheMakedah) July 15, 2021
Eventually she had to pay to get it dissolved and refilled elsewhere.
In their conclusion Ms Harris and co-chair Judith Cummins, said: “The evidence that we have received during this inquiry and our findings clearly demonstrate that maintaining the status quo is not an option.
“As the market for advanced aesthetic non-surgical cosmetic treatments has continued to grow exponentially, it is inconceivable that there remains a complete absence of a legal framework for their administration. In short, anyone can carry out any treatment with minimal restrictions, and even where restrictions are in place, there is little oversight or enforcement. This cannot continue”, they added.