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Promoting whitening creams an offence

Dear Editor,

I was glad to see the article about the problem with whitening creams, tragically causing a death, although the specific cause was not identified (“Beauty salon licencing drive follows skin cream fatality”, March 31).

What ingredient was lethal? Mercury? I also was glad to see the Health Ministry warn that all such whitening creams are dangerous.

I think it is criminal the amount of money that is spent producing, advertising and purchasing these creams.

Promoting the idea that beauty, acceptability and opportunity for marriage or career are related to the lightness of your skin is an offence against the natural skin color of billions of people, urging them to seek to alter a basic condition of their health and beauty.

The companies that promote and sell these products should be ashamed of this assault on the self-image of young people, both girls and boys now, as I observe young men using them, too. The ads are offensive.

As a foreigner, I sometimes cannot find skin lotions without whitening ingredients, which are harmful to the skin.

I hope the Health Ministry will continue its educational efforts to inform citizens of the dangers of these creams.

David Biviano
Siem Reap

Send letters to: or PO?Box 146, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The Post reserves the right to edit letters to a shorter length.The views expressed above are solely the author’s and do not reflect any positions taken by The Phnom Penh Post.



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