By Kieran Rooney, Rachel Claxton

Many Australians have sought medical treatment over the past year after purchasing do-it-yourself cosmetic procedures online.

A large percentage of the often unlicensed products are known to cause permanent damage.

Cosmetic Physicians Society Australasia spokesperson Dr Mary Dingley said consumers are putting themselves at risk.

“These products may not be what is on the label, instead of botox you could get arsenic or something quite poisonous,” she said.

“It is a matter of people trying to save a buck and if you look at someone that is good at doing these types of procedures well, it may look very easy.”

Dr Dingley said that no-one should buy medical products online.

“Unfortunately medications are different from buying a top from a store in the US, it needs to be assessed by the Therapeutic Goods Association to determine whether it is suitable for use, ” she says. 

Australian National University public health expert Rhian Parker said cosmetic procedures are not suitable for home use.

“When you inject something into yourself you are injecting foreign matter and it is usually silicones or something of that kind,” she said.

“If you don’t know what your reaction will be to those things then it is really dangerous and should only be done under medical supervision, if at all.”

Ms Parker said people should not be lured by the strength of the Australian dollar.

“When you are thinking about getting a cheap product that you are going to inject into yourself, no matter how cheap it is, it is definitely not worth the risk,” she said.