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Microbe-free cosmetics with new ISO standard

by Maria Lazarte on
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Cosmetics
Many of us use cosmetics such as make-up or shampoo to cleanse, perfume, protect and change our appearance or scent. But how do we know that the products we apply are safe? A new ISO standard will help evaluate the antimicrobial protection of cosmetics.
There are several ways to protect cosmetics:
  • Chemical preservation
  • Inherent characteristics of the formulation
  • Package design
  • Manufacturing process.

The new standard, ISO 11930:2012, Cosmetics – Microbiology – Evaluation of the antimicrobial protection of a cosmetic product, will help test their effectiveness in safeguarding consumers.

“The use of cosmetics is as global as the industry,” says Andrée Cremieux. Project Leader of ISO 11930. “Harmonized global guidance is necessary to ensure tests of cosmetics are carried out reliably around the world, and that results from different laboratories are comparable.”

“ISO 11930 outlines a procedure for evaluating the overall preservation of a cosmetic product including a preservation efficacy test, as well as evaluation criteria. The standard will share best practice around the world, making companies more efficient, bringing down barriers to trade and reassuring consumers that the products they use are safe.”

ISO 11930 should be used in accordance with ISO 29621:2010, Guidelines for the risk assessment and identification of microbiologically low-risk products, which helps determine which products have a risk of microbial contamination.

ISO 11930:2012, Cosmetics – Microbiology – Evaluation of the antimicrobial protection of a cosmetic product, was developed by ISO technical committee ISO/TC 217, Cosmetics. It is available from ISO national member institutes (see the complete list with contact details). It may also be obtained directly from the ISO Central Secretariat, price 98 Swiss francs, through the ISO Store or by contacting the Marketing, Communication & Information department (see right-hand column).