Nowadays, we live in a society that obsessed with beauty. From the moment each of us sets foot on this earth to the day we die, we are taught by the culture around us that beauty means lives happily ever after, while the hideous witch or ogre is doomed to meet a grisly end. We grow older and the princesses of our bedtime stories make way for shimmering Hollywood stars and carefully made-up models in magazines. The message, however, remains the same which is “beauty is everything”. But as we strive for this indefinable perfection, we must ask ourselves what it truly means to have beauty and how far we are willing to sacrifice to obtain it. With all the big brand launches their much projected products and some of them not being available in our countries, we tend to trust online shopping but is this safer? Shopping for cheap designer cosmetics might put you at risk and with social media playing a big role in this, many of these products are fake and more alarming could leave you with bad side effects. The beauty industry is exploding and with the youth trying to keep up with their beauty idols and catch up with trends, many are taking short cuts. These unregulated fakes can contain a lot of unregulated dangerous ingredients that we don’t know of and can cause massive damage.

Firstly, the thing that always show up are all about the reason for using cosmetic that can affect the skin. The effect to the skin by using cosmetic is one of the expectations that vary for the cosmetic user itself. The importance of cosmetic is usually to look more beautiful and be confident. It also plays a big role in the creation of an image or being presentable to others (DeLong and Bye, 1990). In a meanwhile, cosmetic usage gives a really big impact to the skin of users that come in good result and ineffective result. According to (Rodda, 2004) a beauty therapist, he revealed that a lot of products in the market are harsh on the skin. Moreover, without using a correct protection when using cosmetic product, it can lead to making the skin be more sensitive. The skin will go on defensive, thinking that it is being attacked. Many people say they have sensitive skin because skincare products, or household products that contact their skin, cause stinging, burning, redness, or tightness. Usually, people are concerned about the condition on the skin and not thinking about the effect to the skin. Cosmetic as a product that will ensure the changes on the skin turns out to be much demanded product that plays the part of fulfilling human needs. Cosmetic usage and the ingredients in the cosmetic product plays important role in safety. A 2006 study by Chemical Safe Skincare Research found that the average woman uses 12 toiletries per day, cumulatively containing up to 175 different chemicals. Because 60 percent of products applied to the skin are absorbed into the body, the average woman absorbs five pounds of chemicals per year through her cosmetics. Many products on the market are not safe and effective, including one of every eight high-SPF sunscreens that does not protect from UVA radiation as mentioned by (EWG, 2007).

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Second, the sale of counterfeit cosmetics affects brands. Surely at some point in our life we have bought or at least thought about buying something that was not the real deal. They spend millions of dollars promoting their brand and doing all the right things with innovation and product development, only to have somebody create a substandard product with false branding. The loyal following created by heritage and start-up cosmetics brands alike have consumers seeking all avenues to get their hands on the latest products. Those seeking the enormously popular Kylie Cosmetic Lip Kits are undoubtedly barraged with deals from traditionally trustworthy channels. There are presently over 300 results on Amazon for Kylie Cosmetics, while the brand clearly states on their website that these products are sold exclusively on the company’s website. Looking at the reviews of these products, you’ll find comments stating that the products smell like gasoline or that the product caused their lips to burn or stick together. Third-party ecommerce retailers are having trouble preventing counterfeit products being sold on their sites, so manufacturers will need to step in to help. While manufacturers are doing their best to protect their consumers from dangerous knock-offs and their own brand equity from the effect these horror stories have on their business, consumers should not rely on 3rd-party retailers to guard against counterfeit product. These 3rd parties cannot guarantee a product is authentic, untampered, stored correctly, etc. Unfortunately, it is the manufacturer’s brands that get tarnished as negative consumer reviews on sites get attributed directly to the product listings and not the profiles of the sellers. Amazon is working to combat this issue and has strict anti-counterfeiting policies that can immediately shut down a seller operation. However, as identical operations pop up in place of the ones that are shut down.

Lastly, the dermatologist added that the use of these fake products with at times unknown chemicals can lead to a lot of dangerous conditions like allergic reactions, heavy metal poisoning, arsenic poisoning, exposure to dangerous bacteria and skin cancer. Cosmetics are not a healthy choice, but one cannot stop using them. It is advisable to use the products in moderation though, and only when absolutely necessary. As Dr Javed said long term exposure can lead to the accumulation of toxic materials in the skin, which can cause skin cancer. The government should fulfil its responsibility to protect the public from harm by taking action against the sale and advertisement of counterfeit and cheaply made cosmetics. Skin Specialist Imtiaz Rao said that it was crucial to indicate the expiry date and provide other critical information on product packaging. Dr Rao advised adequate consuming conditions must also be clearly written on products together with the production dates. It is also crucial for buyers to read this information before purchasing and applying.

In conclusion, the effect of using counterfeit cosmetics are effect of skin, the sale of counterfeit cosmetics affects brands and chemicals can lead to a lot of dangerous conditions. Its offensively clear that using counterfeit products are dangerous. My advice to everyone buying fakes online is to do your research first and consider whether it is worth it. Because getting a reaction from a replica makeup brand which can cause acne, dermatitis, eczema or even scaling is not worth saving a few pennies in my opinion.

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