The Nuffield Council on Bioethics has called for a ban on non-surgical procedures for under 18s unless for medical reasons corroborated by a health specialist such as a GP or psychologist.
It said there were major points of ethical concern around the practice and promotion of cosmetic procedures, in a report titled Cosmetic Procedures: Ethical Issues. The Council made a series of recommendations to reform the ways in which cosmetic procedures are marketed and carried out in the UK.
It urged the Department of Health to make all dermal fillers ‘prescription-only’ – like botulinum toxin – in order to place formal limits on who can inject them, as well as implement legal quality and safety approval measures on the product itself.
“Under 18s should not be able to just walk in off the street and have a cosmetic procedure. There are legal age limits for having tattoos or using sunbeds. Invasive cosmetic procedures should be regulated in a similar way,” said Jeanette Edwards, professor of social anthropology from the University of Manchester, who chaired an inquiry on the report.