Saturday, 13 October 2012

Fatal Beauty

When I meet women who are from Hong Kong, many of them look very closely at my face and exclaim that I have good skin.

They ask me for my beauty secrets and many are disappointed when I tell them I drink lots of water, exercise regularly and don't drink coffee, tea or soft drinks.

They were expecting I'd tell them about a miracle product that I use and hoping to get their hands on it.

One time I met two women from a cosmetics line, their faces completely made up so I was assuming they'd try to hard sell some products to me.

Instead they thought my skin was fine with just some cover up in some areas and filled in my eyebrows.

However there are women in the city who are willing to do just about anything to beautify themselves, even if it costs thousands of dollars.

But the results can be fatal as we are seeing in DR Beauty Centre chain where one 46-year-old woman has died and three others were infected with a superbug after undergoing a procedure that's normally reserved for cancer patients.

The procedure involves drawing blood from the person, then it is processed to harvest "cytokine-induced killer cells" or CIK found in white blood cells. The CIK cells are multiplied in a culture solution in a laboratory and then injected back into the patient along with their own blood after two weeks.

The centre claimed this treatment helped beautify the skin, but founder Dr Stephen Chow Heung-wing admitted there was no evidence the treatment was effective.

Each woman paid HK$50,000 for this procedure, including Chow's sister who is one of those still in hospital.

While the government is conducting a review of this case, many medical practitioners and people within the beauty industry are calling for regulations as currently beauty clinics can claim just about anything in their advertisements which are plastered all over the city.

At the same time consumers must learn not to be gullible when it comes to beauty treatments -- many of them may not necessarily result in the promised benefits.

When a treatment involves extracting blood and it's not in a hospital or doctor's office, it's shocking to find consumers didn't think this was alarming until this incident.

More education must be done so that consumers will know what to expect when they visit these beauty centres.

In the meantime I'm sticking to my tried and tested regimen -- water, exercise and sleep.

No comments:

Post a Comment