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Consumer & Business Advice
Media releases
25 July 2018

Nearly 100 imported eyeliner bottles potentially containing dangerous levels of lead have been removed from South Australian shelves following action from Consumer and Business Services.

Commissioner for Consumer Affairs Dini Soulio said Consumer and Business Services responded quickly to protect South Australians following concern about the sale of these products in New South Wales.

“Hashmi eyeliner products are predominantly sold in South Australia through shops that stock goods imported from Pakistan and Afghanistan,” he said.

“Tests conducted on these products in New South Wales have indicated dangerous levels of lead, as well as the presence of other dangerous metals, including arsenic, cadmium and mercury.

“Officers from Consumer and Business Services have been visiting shops across Adelaide, finding these products in three stores and a similar product from the same brand in one store.

“Pleasingly, these store owners have been very cooperative when alerted to the issue, and have immediately taken all products from their shelves.”

Mr Soulio said that, so far, 97 units have been taken off shelves – some of which have featured labels claiming the products are lead free.

“Officers from CBS will continue to check shops that may be stocking these products to ensure they are taken off the shelves as a matter of priority,” he said.

“I would urge any stores that sell cosmetics to check their shelves to ensure they aren’t selling any products of concern, which at this stage are the Hashmi Surma Special and Hashmi Kohl Aswad eyeliners.

“If these products are found, staff should remove them from sale immediately and contact us directly.”

SA Health’s Chief Medical Officer and Chief Public Health Officer, Professor Paddy Phillips, said anyone who has the product should refrain from using it.

“It only takes a very small amount of lead to pass into your bloodstream to result in serious health impacts,” Professor Phillips said.

“Lead can be harmful to people of all ages, but the risk of health effects is highest for unborn babies, infants and children.

“If anyone has used the product, they should seek medical advice.”

Mr Soulio said CBS will continue to work with authorities in New South Wales, who are leading the investigation into this matter.

Consumers who have purchased these products are being urged to contact CBS on 131 882.