How do I find out if I can use a ingredient in cosmetics?
The EU Cosmetics Regulation and UK Cosmetics Regulation controls what may or may not be put in a cosmetic product and in many cases specifies how certain cosmetic ingredients must be used. This decision tree is intended to take you through the steps of checking whether a substance is prohibited, restricted or otherwise permitted for use. At each stage you will need to check whether your ingredient is listed in a particular Annex to the Regulation. Substances are identified in the Annexes using information such as chemical name or INN (Non-proprietary Names), CAS (Chemical Abstracts Service) number, EC (European Community) number, common ingredient names found in Commission Decision (EU) 2019/701 (Glossary), or in the case of colorants, by their Colour Index (CI) number. Please note that this decision tree is a helpful tool to introduce you to the Annexes. If in any doubt about a particular substance it is recommended that you check with your raw material supplier or a consultant specialising in the cosmetics legislation. Whilst CTPA cannot recommend individual companies, our website has an interactive list of members allowing you to search for specific services.Start
Annex II is the list of substances that are prohibited for use in cosmetic products.
Some substances are included in Annex II under ‘umbrella’ terms, for example entry 39 prohibits ‘antibiotics’ and entry 416 prohibits ‘cells, tissues or products of human origin’. It is therefore advisable to familiarise yourself with the entries in this Annex as a simple search may not immediately identify your substance as falling under one of these terms.