Guidance on “Nature-orientated Cosmetics”

Cosmetic products contribute towards the wellbeing of consumers, and everyday life can no longer be imagined without them. During the past years, consumers have increasingly turned to natural cosmetics or nature-orientated cosmetics. However, natural cosmetics, nature-orientated cosmetics and conventional cosmetics cannot always be clearly differentiated from one another. Depending on their intended use, many products include more or less natural ingredients. Not all cosmetic products can be made from natural substances alone, such as certain sunscreens and decorative cosmetics or also certain hair dyes. As a matter of principle, all cosmetic products are subject to the comprehensive conditions imposed by the EU cosmetics legislation, and every product must undergo a detailed safety assessment.

As far as certified natural cosmetics are concerned, consumers can orient themselves today towards the different seals. The criteria of NATRUE and COSMOS, for instance, are transparently accessible on the internet. Here, the consumer finds answers to his questions, eg whether in accordingly certified natural cosmetics exclusively natural ingredients may be used or whether certain amounts of synthetic substances may be processed as well.

Today consumers expect transparency on all levels: regardless of whether ingredients, processing, packaging or sales are concerned. All these topics are gaining in relevance for the buying decision and hence mark the expectations of customers concerning a product. Consumers sometimes feel puzzled, more particularly, for products which refer to natural ingredients in their advertising but do not have any natural cosmetics seal.

After a thorough discussion about the topic within the framework of DIALOG KOSMETIK, all participants agreed that it would make sense to elaborate guidance which can first support manufacturers in positioning themselves authentically with their products on the market. The working group of representatives from public authorities, industry and consumer associations has now elaborated this Guidance which is to contribute to a better structuring of the product diversity on the market. This means of course that there will also be more clarity for consumers who can orient themselves better when making purchases. This document is to be constantly amended and adjusted to the current developments on the market – with the goal of creating the best possible transparency for everybody.