Ireland’s Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA) and the Health Service Executive (HSE) have warned consumers over the use of fake cosmetic products after identifying presence of harmful substances.

HSE tested 728 counterfeit products that were detained by HPRA and found some of the cosmetics contained harmful substances, including arsenic and lead.

Imitations of Kylie Holiday-Burgundy and Bronze eyeshadow palettes, Kylie Matte liquid lipstick and lip liner, and Urban Decay eyeshadow palettes were among the products that were seised.

“Prolonged exposure to both of these banned substances can severely damage your health causing potential harm to your brain and kidneys.”

Most of the products were eye-shadows and lip brands, which were purchased online outside of the EU and being sold to Irish consumers in trade shows and online.

HPRA cosmetics compliance manager Aoife Farrell said: “The HPRA is extremely concerned that highly toxic substances, such as arsenic and lead, have been detected in products, which are available to Irish consumers.

“Prolonged exposure to both of these banned substances can severely damage your health causing potential harm to your brain and kidneys, among other organs.”

The HPRA noted that high-end cosmetics such as Kylie Cosmetics by Kylie Jenner are available only from the company’s website in the US. Other genuine cosmetic products are available only through high street stores or pharmacies.

Farell advised: “Beauty brands usually list their licensed retailers on their websites and this is an easy way for consumers to ensure that they are purchasing a genuine cosmetic product. If a product is much cheaper than in a high street store or pharmacy, consumers should be immediately suspicious and think twice before buying the beauty product.”