Important factors in Cosmetic Testing according to Indian Regulations
Cosmetic testing labs that are approved by the state FDA and CDSCO under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act for testing cosmetic products must be used for cosmetic testing of products. The Indian cosmetic products are regulated under Drugs and Cosmetics Act 1940 and Rules 1945. The standards for cosmetics are listed under Schedule S of Drugs and Cosmetics Rules 1945. Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has also laid down specific standards for some products like lipsticks and skin creams under IS 9875:1990 and IS 6608:2004 respectively.

Types of cosmetic testing

Cosmetic testing labs carry out testing on a number of cosmetic products like lipsticks, hair oil, shampoos, skin creams, soaps, lotions, nail polish, etc. The ingredients used as well as the finished cosmetic products are analysed for microbial and heavy metal contamination. The cosmetic testing labs also verify that the products do not contain banned chemicals and colours or any other restricted and prohibited materials and ingredients. All leading brands take the help of cosmetic labs to formulate their products so their cosmetics are within the prescribed Indian standards. The testing laboratories also determine if there are any inconsistencies in product formulation. Cosmetic labs help to determine the percentage of organic ingredients and absence of harmful chemicals in the various products.

Why cosmetic testing is needed

Cosmetic testing in labs is also important for other reasons like stability testing and shelf life testing. Properly conducted shelf life and stability testing ensure that the quality of the cosmetic products will be maintained throughout the product life-cycle, which for cosmetics extends into years. Besides, cosmetics are also tested for spread ability, viscosity, pay off test and scratch test. Skin irritation studies of cosmetic products, along with sun protective factor also play some pivotal roles in ensuring that the products are safe and will do what they claim. Cosmetic testing labs play a crucial role when there is a requirement to troubleshoot and carry out investigation so complaints can be mitigated. Testing labs carry out deformulation of products to ensure that the ingredients are safe and in the right concentration as indicated on labels. They also carry out efficacy testing of products especially anti-aging skin care products.

Some other important cosmetic testing

Since water is an important ingredient in cosmetics it is important to have the water testing also carried out from an approved food lab. This will ensure that the water is potable, free from microbial, chemical contaminants and does not contain heavy metals. Sometimes cosmetics are made from spurious materials and cosmetic testing labs can analyse the finished product, especially if products are being imported to ensure that the ingredients meet the Indian cosmetic and BIS standards. It is also important for manufacturers to test the fragrances, colours, flavours and preservatives used in cosmetic products to ensure they are prescribed by regulations and are safe to use. Also all the ingredients are tested to ensure that they do not have the potential to cause allergic reactions.

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