HM Insights

Botched Beauty Treatments - What to do if it happens to you

Updated 11 February 2020

Non-surgical cosmetic treatments have fast become the norm in the beauty industry.  Botox injections and dermal fillers account for 9 out of 10 cosmetic procedures in the UK – as commonplace as tanning or hair removal.  These treatments are readily available in premises ranging from hairdressers to pharmacies.

Beauty Treatment Claims Guide - What you should do

Treatments & injections currently unregulated

As the BBC highlighted recently, the provision of these treatments and injections is currently unregulated.  The industry is rife with unethical promotions shifting the focus from patient wellbeing to profit.  'Non-surgical' does not mean 'non-medical' and deciding where to have these treatments must be done vigilantly.  As with most medical treatments, there are risks as well as benefits and the practitioner should be chosen carefully. 

Following advice from the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), the Scottish Government have submitted proposals for formal regulation and licencing of those offering these treatments and this is aimed at ensuring providers have the required skill, training and experience. 

Recent Developments in England

In the past week, the House of Lords has introduced a Bill ( The Cosmetic Surgery ( Standards) Bill) in order to provide regulation in the field.  Specifically the Bill looks to introduce a specialist register that should include the names of medical practitioners who specialise in cosmetic surgery.  The proposed changes will apply to medical practitioners who operate both within and out with the NHS.  It will also apply in Scotland. 

The Bill states that in creating such a scheme the General Medical Council should identify the standard of person which it considers to be a person qualified to carry out cosmetic procedures and so be included on the register. 

Treatments are currently been provided by a range of individuals, from hairdressers and beauticians to qualified medical practitioners.  It therefore remains to be seen as to how far reaching such a scheme will be and whether the proposed regulations will apply to all treatment providers.

Legislators are clearly now responding fast to this particular industry.  However, while treatment providers remain unregulated, it is possible that treatments will continue to be provided by those who are not deemed to be suitably skilled, trained or experienced.  We expect to continue to see a large number of claims arising from this industry.

Beauty Treatment Claims Guide

We have put together a helpful guide of what you should do if your treatment doesn't go to plan:

  1. Photos – take colour photographs of your injuries/treatment results straight away. It would also be helpful to take photos of the premises where you had the treatment;
  2. Keep any emails, text messages or letters received confirming your appointment together with any receipts confirming payments or contractual agreements signed;
  3. Report the issue to a manager as soon as possible. They should make a record of this in their incident book; and
  4. Get medical advice from a qualified medical professional on how best to treat the issue.

Why choose Harper Macleod for your claim?

We regularly act for clients who have suffered injuries or botched results following beauty treatments including:

  • facial disfigurement
  • chemical burns
  • hair loss/damage
  • allergic reactions
  • contraction of post-procedural infections or diseases. 

At the moment, without proper regulation, it can often be difficult establishing a provider has been negligent.  Many venues allow treatment providers to work on a self-employed basis, they may be unqualified, use poor equipment or substandard products, they may not have a record of your appointment or even the treatment you received.  It is, therefore, crucial to keep evidence in the event your treatment doesn't go to plan. 

We are injury experts and have one of the largest personal injury departments in Scotland with over 25 personal injury specialists covering the whole of Scotland, with offices in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Inverness, Thurso and Lerwick.

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We provide a free initial consultation and you can contact us by filling out our simple claims form online with details of your accident/injury or:

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