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.