The cosmetics and personal care products act of 2013 was introduced in the house in March 2013. The main aim of the act is to amend the federal food and drugs act in order to provide regulation of cosmetics, which this is done by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. The bill is designed to introduce a new sub chapter in the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics act. This newly introduced sub chapter will impose new obligations on the FDA and also on the owners of the brand. The brand owners making the beauty products are responsible to bring the cosmetics into the market whether foreign or domestic and the obligation under this act is imposed on the manufacturers of the ingredients.

Cosmetic Labeling

  • With this new act in place, the FDA calls for the cosmetic ingredients for skin care and moisturizer to be listed on the label. The trade secret ingredients of the brands have to be listed under the head of other ingredients – this could be a flavor or fragrance of particular cosmetic. The incidental or the insignificant ingredients for which technical details are not available need not be listed.
  • The bill strictly says that all the ingredients used in the cosmetics should be listed in alphabetical order and listed by name. In case there are contaminants in the cosmetics they have to be listed separately – that too if the contaminants are present for more than 1 part per billion and in certain cases it could be even lower.
  • The trade secret protection is provided for the concentration of the cosmetic ingredients which are generally used as a finished product in the cosmetic manufacturing.
  • The Nano materials have to be classified as the nano scale; using the standards of 1 percent of particles having at least 1 dimension of more than 100 nanometers.
  • The vendors or the retailers who sell their products through the online sites should always include the entire detailed ingredients list in the website itself. This is important in order to get the FDA license.

Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act of 2013 Provisions

  • The cosmetic manufacturers are required to establish proper safety of each ingredient during the process of acquiring them and also in storing them. This has to be documented as per the rules of this new bill.
  • Ingredients that have been and will be linked to birth defects and cancer are to be phased out of use in skin care and cosmetic products.
  • Companies will be required to share data in order to reduce duplication of testing and to develop alternatives to testing products on animals.

What this means for the safe beauty movement

The federal is being to acknowledge the fact that the rules that have been in place for decades were not doing enough to protect the consumer from shady practices in the skin care industry. The United States is far behind the with regulations concerning the ingredients and development of the skin care products sold and used by millions of unsuspecting americans. In many cases, big brand skin care companies have been formulating safe beauty products for countries in Europe, because of their stricter regulations, and in turn, sending the same dangerous alternative formulated products here. The Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act of 2013 is a step in the right direction, but more can and should be done.

We, as the consumers, hold the power as to what we will and will not tolerate from this multi-billion dollar skin care industry. If we make a concerted decision to buy from brands that are being responsible, we can fast track the mass adoption of safe beauty ingredients and production processes.