The demand for the cosmetic industry is growing day by day. Both Indian and International cosmetic companies are extending their product range to meet the expectations of their consumers. Social media and television is fuelling the growth of the cosmetic industry and creating constant need of looking fashionable and glamorous. Earlier, there were no rules for importing and manufacturing cosmetic products. The government of India was compelled to frame various policies to make sure that the cosmetic products available in the market are accurately tested in various laboratories and are free from harmful ingredients.
The importer of a cosmetic requires the cosmetic registration license before the introduction of their products in the Indian market. After proper verification of documents like Certificate of Analysis of a particular cosmetic product by CDSCO, your license for cosmetic business will be provided in Form 43.
What is Certificate of Analysis (COA)?
COA is a document that gives actual test results for the batch of cosmetic products that a cosmetic company is exporting. The test results are usually documented against a set of specifications. Documents must be provided for all products and their variants. Also, it should be given by the manufacturer (actual or legal) and must report basic physiochemical, microbial and heavy metal tests.
A Specification for a product is a document that gives guidelines of a given cosmetic product’s physical and chemical parameters.
Elements of Certificate of Analysis for Cosmetics in India
The cosmetic analysis test is conducted as per the rules set by the Bureau of Indian Standards. Cosmetic testing includes:
Physical and Chemical Analysis
- Tests to know about the presence of any heavy metals
- Heavy metals like Lead, Arsenic and Mercury are harmful for skin. Generally, heavy metal analysis is more relevant to individual ingredients than it is for a finished cosmetic product. However, it is mandatory to get the heavy metal analysis.
- Microbial testing to check the absence of microbial counts as well as pathogens
The ability of microorganisms to grow and reproduce in cosmetic and skincare products is a concern of both quality and safety. Sometimes suppliers utilize preservatives and other ingredients to combat the growth and survival of microorganisms in their products. However, the rise of all-natural and herbal cosmetics and skincare reintroduces microbial risks. Online retailers such as Amazon, Whole Foods, and many others now mandate suppliers to submit a Certificate of Analysis (COA) on all cosmetic and skincare products sold through their platform. Microbial counts are done on each batch in most cosmetic manufacturing companies.
- All kinds of physical testing such as viscosity, pH, specific gravity, etc.
The data required for a cosmetic specification are appearance, pH (if the formula contains water), odour, specific gravity, and viscosity.
The viscosity is important for most cosmetic products as it gives you a numerical range pertaining to the consistency of the product. This will directly impact how the cosmetic performs while using it in reality.
Specific gravity is another key measure of a product as it depicts how dense it is in relation to water.
The following details are given on the letterhead of Actual Manufacturer:
- Product Name and Batch Number
- Testing parameters of the cosmetic product like appearance, odour, specific gravity, pH, viscosity
- Microbiology of the product like total viable count, gram-negative pathogens.
- Presence of heavy metals like lead, arsenic, mercury. Certain maximum limits have been set for these heavy metals. Moreover, the total heavy metals other than lead should be less than 100 ppm.
Get a Certificate of Analysis (COA) for skincare and Cosmetics products. We provide quality-assured data to brands, manufacturers, and suppliers to help them understand and mitigate product risk. CliniExperts can organize the data for you and complete specifications for finished products or ingredients. We can arrange a full panel of Cosmetic and Skincare microbiological analyses to meet the Certificate of Analysis (COA) requirements of your cosmetic product.
- Guidance Document on Common Submission Format for Import Registration of Cosmetics in India. Available at: https://cdsco.gov.in/opencms/export/sites/CDSCO_WEB/Pdf-documents/cosmetics/Guidancedoccos.pdf.Accessed on 18th August, 2020.