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Common criteria for cosmetic product claims

On 10 July 2013, the European Commission published the list of "common criteria for the justification of claims used in relation to cosmetic products".

This Regulation is binding and directly applicable in all Member States.

Its main objective is to protect the end user by guaranteeing his understanding of the cosmetics product’s claims relating to its function, content and effects.

Once he is aware of the products characteristics and qualities, he can then make an informed decision based on his needs and expectations. This will in turn promote innovation and competition.

The list is as follows:

  • Legal compliance: eg. you cannot “convey the idea that a product has a specific benefit when this benefit is mere compliance with minimum legal requirements”.
  • Truthfulness: eg. “If it is claimed on the product that it contains a specific ingredient, the ingredient shall be deliberately present”.
  • Evidential support: eg. the claim must be based on the most recent evidence, studies and data.
  • Honesty: eg. "Claims shall not attribute to the product concerned specific characteristics if similar products possess the same characteristic"
  • Fairness: eg. cosmetic product claims must be objective and not denigrate competitors.
  • Informed decision-making: eg. claims must be understandable and clear to the average user.

See Regulation (EU) No 655/2013 for more information.

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