19 May 2024

Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health has banned the import, production and sale of cosmetic products containing plastic microbeads, effective January 1st, 2020.

According to the ministry’s announcement, which has already been published in the Royal Gazette, plastic microbeads do not degrade over time in water, or in the environment, and are used in rinse-off products such as face scrubs.

The UK, for instance, prohibited the use of plastic microbeads in the manufacture of cosmetics and personal care products in 2018, out of concern over their impact on marine life.

The small spherical beads, designed to help with exfoliation (dead skin cell removal) are then washed down the drain, often slip through waste-water treatment system and end up in the sea.