What to do if you are considering having a cosmetic procedure

Before having any cosmetic procedure

  • Seek advice from a medical practitioner before having a procedure to get information about any health or infection risks that might be involved – your GP would be a good first port of call.
  • Check the experience and qualifications of the person performing the procedure. If the person claims to be a doctor or nurse, you can search the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) website to see if they are registered in Australia and if there are any conditions on their practice. Also consider whether they have the appropriate qualifications for the type of procedure you are considering.
  • Don’t jump in. Take your time deciding what you want and if you wish to proceed. These can be complex procedures. Your provider should give you detailed information about what is involved and the possible risks. Don’t hesitate to ask questions and read any information you are given carefully and make sure you understand the implications before you agree to proceed. If a procedure is offered before you have time to assess the risks and benefits of a particular service, you should delay and seek advice.
  • Check whether the cosmetic procedure you are considering is on the list of treatments that must be performed at a licensed private health facility or public hospital. Licensed private health facilities should display a copy of their licence. You can also check whether the clinic is licensed by referring to the list of Licensed private health facilities.
  • Compare the prices quoted for the procedure or medication with competitors. If the prices quoted are far less than competitors, this can indicate the products may be counterfeit or not Australian registered medicines.

After a cosmetic procedure

  • If there are any complications after a cosmetic procedure – seek medical advice.
  • Refer any complaints concerning the quality of cosmetic procedures to the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC). This includes complaints about the quality of care as well as complaints about the outcome of the procedure.

More information

Cosmetic procedures

To find out more about cosmetic procedures, refer to Frequently asked questions.

Unsafe and illegal practices at beauty and cosmetic clinics

For more information regarding unsafe and illegal practices at beauty and cosmetic clinics, visit:

Review of the regulation of cosmetic procedures

The NSW Minister for Health, the Hon. Brad Hazzard MP, requested NSW Health undertake a review to determine whether the regulation of cosmetic procedures was appropriate to ensure the safety of consumers. For more information about the review, refer to the Report on the Review of the Regulation of Cosmetic Procedures.

Current as at: Tuesday 13 July 2021
Contact page owner: NSW Health