Keep an Eye on Lash Serums


For the past two years, I have been badgering the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) about eyelash growth enhancers, some of which contain pharmaceutical substances called prostaglandin analogues used in glaucoma drugs (see my 20 January column). In June, the MHRA told me it ‘shares concern about the appropriateness of using such agents in unlicensed products’ and has referred it to the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, which looks after consumer protection. But the products continue to be sold over the counter, potentially endangering people’s vision. Meanwhile, the Swedish Medical Products Agency (SMPA) has analysed 26 eyelash serums and found that nine contained prostaglandin analogues, which ‘the agency views very seriously’. It advises consumers not to use these products as it ‘may lead to serious side effects’. The SMPA is pursuing a ban and has published a full list of the products on its website: visit and search for ‘eyelash serums’.
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