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We, as a cosmetic testing facility, often find that many cosmetic manufaturers and formulators are not safety testing their cosmetic and beauty care products to the extent that they should be. This can be for several reasons, some being because they use preservatives that have already been tested by the supplier or because the FDA does not require pre-approval prior to market and the company just can't afford to test until their products make more profit. There are many good reasons to properly test cosmetics, though; whether it be to protect the interests of the company, or to be sure you are protecting the health and safety of the consumers using the products. Of these, we've chosen the top five reasons for cosmetic product manufacturers and formulators to safety test their products.
5. FDA Regulations – Though not the most imaginative of reasons, companies are required to follow regulations set by the FDA when manufacturing their products. Testing provides documented proof that a company has taken steps to follow regulations. This is a sort of insurance policy. By spending the money to test the product, cosmetic companies are guarding against potential repercussions by the FDA and expensive actions associated with that.
4. Marketability – A good majority of testing labs in the U.S. do not conduct testing on animals. For many, this is for ethical reasons. For others, it's because many of the methods associated with animal testing are actually banned in their area. By testing with a lab that conducts in-vitro (non-animal) testing as opposed to in-vivo, and making sure that their suppliers do the same, a cosmetic company is legally able to advertise that they do not associate with companies that test on animals; a disclosure that's become increasingly important to a wide range of social demographics.
3. Product Planning – Before selling a new product, a company needs to test it in order to ensure that it's actually going to sell. The test most useful in this case is the stability test. This will tell companies if their product is in danger of separating, changing colors, or ending up with foul odors and thus becoming aesthetically unpleasant while on the shelf. They'll also learn from this how to label it; if consumers should be given specific instructions on proper storage, practice and how long realistically they can use the product after opening before it expires. By utilizing testing methods, cosmetics companies are able to accurately project aspects of the future of their products.
2. Quality – A benefit that goes along with marketability and product planning, quality is an aspect of any product that should be kept in mind. Any company can devise the most eye-catching packaging or quick methods of getting a consumer to buy that first item, but the quality of the product guarantees repeat customers. By testing their cosmetics, companies are making sure that their products will last long enough at home for the customer to fall in love. Deterrents to such ends are things like changes in the smell of the product, mold growth, separating of liquids in the cosmetic, and skin irritation. All of these things can be detected with testing and remedied before the product ever reaches the consumer.
1. Safety – The number one reason why a company should test their products is safety. The concept of most cosmetics is that they're temporary and always changing. When safety fails, it could lead to permanent damage, usually to the skin but also to the eyes. Danger to the consumer is danger to the company. By not testing their products and ensuring that they are safe for use, companies are taking the chance that something could go wrong and they could end up with a lawsuit, FDA involvement, and product recalls, all of which are very expensive and not conducive to the future of any company.
Creating cosmetics and starting a successful company can be terrifying, but it can also be very rewarding. By following the rules and practicing competence and honesty, a company can go far. There are many reasons for cosmetic companies not to test their products, but there are even more reasons to go the extra mile. By testing their products, cosmetic and personal care companies remove the hazard associated with untested products, providing them with a better opportunity to succeed because they ensured the safety and the quality of their product.