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SFDA issues guidance for children’s cosmetics in China

By Andrew MCDOUGALL , 01-Nov-2012
Last updated the 03-May-2013 at 11:08 GMT

The State Food and Drug Administration in China has issued a guide for the application and review of children's cosmetics in order to ensure product safety.

The guide has been published to ensure that cosmetics intended for use by children under 12 years of age will have to comply to a specific set of rules and criteria regarding labels, ingredients, and intended use.

“In order to ensure the quality and safety of cosmetics for children and further standardize the application and technical review of children's cosmetics, the SFDA developed and recently issued the Guide for the Application and Review of Children's Cosmetics,” says the directive.

“The Guide specifies the scope of application, principles of formulation, safety of cosmetics, application requirements for children's cosmetics and review principles.”

Under scrutiny

Under the new guidelines the scope, formula, raw materials, product safety and security risk assessment will all be scrutinised to ensure companies adhere to them.

With regards to labeling; it must be completely clear that the product is intended to be used by children, highlighted where appropriate on the packaging.

The formula of these products should contain less or no colouring agents, preservatives and surface-active agents where possible.

Ingredients used for skin whitening, anti-acne products, hair removal, anti-perspirants, and deodorants, are also deemed inappropriate by the new guidelines.

Specific criteria

On top of this, only ingredients with a certain history of safe use in cosmetics are allowed, whilst the use of gene technology, nanotechnology and other raw materials preparation are advised against.

The last point alluded to in the directive concerns security; in particular product safety and risk assessment.

The risk assessments for the products must be specific to a child and take into account how the product will be used, reporting solely based on the characteristics for children.

The guidance can be found in full on the Chinese version of the website , or you can access the English website here.

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