Get in on this viral marvel and start spreading that buzz! Buzzy was made for all up and coming modern publishers & magazines!

Fb. In. Tw. Be.

What Are Cosmetics? A Good Place to Start

What should a cosmetic product be (or not) ?

There is so much to the art of formulating cosmetics, it’s almost impossible to choose where to start. It seems to me that a definition would be useful to understand what we can and cannot do when creating a cosmetic. That’s a good place to start.

FDA’s Definition of “Cosmetic”

The Federal Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) defines cosmetics as “articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied to the human body…for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance.” Included in this definition are products such as skin moisturizers, perfumes, lipsticks, fingernail polishes, eye and facial makeup preparations, shampoos, permanent waves, hair colors, toothpastes, and deodorants, as well as any material intended for use as a component of a cosmetic product.

EU’s Definition of “Cosmetic”

The European Union Cosmetics Directive defines a cosmetic as “any substance or preparation intended to be placed in contact with the various external parts of the human body (epidermis, hair system, nails, lips and external genital organs) or with the teeth and the mucous membranes of the oral cavity with a view exclusively or mainly to cleaning them, perfuming them, changing their appearance and/or correcting body odours and/or protecting them or keeping them in good condition.”

In Short

A cosmetic is a product for external application with the role of helping improve/maintain the appearance of the hair, skin, and teeth.

The Definition Specifically Excludes

Substances or mixtures intended to be ingested, inhaled, injected or implanted into the human body. Cosmetics should NEVER be represented as having physiological or therapeutic activities.


Now you know the definition of Cosmetics, and what a cosmetic product should and should not do (or claim to do). Many small brands and soap makers claim that their products are calming, uplifting, stimulating, etc. This is completely out of the scope of what a cosmetic product can / should do, and can cause these people a lot of trouble if news gets the FDA that they are doing these claims. If you are thinking of starting a cosmetic line / business, please make sure you are only claiming things that are within the definition of “Cosmetics” where you live.

Post a Comment

You don't have permission to register