Assessing safety

The main purpose of the Cosmetics Regulation is human safety, and each cosmetic product must be the subject of a safety assessment performed by a duly qualified professional before it is placed on the market. In addition, the law requires that a specific safety assessment is carried out for cosmetic products intended for use on children under the age of three and for products exclusively used for external intimate hygiene.

From 11 July 2013 the requirements of the new EU Cosmetics Regulationwill govern the qualifications of individual safety assessors.

NB. Every product on the EU market on or after 11 July 2013 must be assessed according to the requirements of the new Regulation.

The safety assessor will take into account all support information such as:

  • the general toxicological profile of each ingredient used; 
  • the chemical structure of each ingredient; 
  • the level of exposure of each ingredient; 
  • the specific exposure characteristics of the areas on which the cosmetic product will be applied; and 
  • the specific exposure characteristics of the class of individuals for whom the cosmetic product is intended.

In the case of perfumery raw materials, the composition may not be known because of confidentiality. If so, it is necessary to obtain a relevant safety assessment from the supplier.

Ingredients used in cosmetics are strictly regulated by the Cosmetics Regulation, and these laws require cosmetic products to be safe under both normal and reasonably anticipated conditions of use.