With various cosmetic companies feeling the wrath of the FDA over misleading marketing claims of late, the Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers & Distributors association is focusing on helping the industry to avoid making the same mistakes in the future.
ICMAD president, Pam Busiek says providing cosmetic companies with the right information from government agencies like the FDA will help marketers to be prepared and avoid running into problems, especially when it comes to area of product claims.
“Sharing the following information is part of ICMAD’s on-going effort to communicate key issues within the industry.”
Helping the industry to be prepared
The Association is known for holding presentations that focus on the top challenges facing cosmetic industry professionals today.
It recently held a Cosmetic Technical Regulatory Forum in California whereby it addressed current regulatory and legislative issues such as changes in federal and state landscape, how it is helping to shape the legislation and how product claims are fueling consumer lawsuits in California.
“The ICMAD Cosmetic Technical Regulatory Forum is beneficial in helping beauty entrepreneurs better manage the complex product regulations our industry faces. The information and insight alone from our board members and industry experts is invaluable,” says Busiek.
Following that conference, the Association has highlighted the FDA’s guidelines on product claims and how marketers can avoid getting into hot water with the Administration, like some have in recent months.
Since September 2012, the FDA has issued seven warning letters to manufacturers of cosmetic products, identifying numerous products that appear to be promoted for uses that cause these products to be drugs.
Specifically, the claims for these products indicate that they are intended to affect the structure or any function of the human body, and/or are intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of disease, rendering them drugs under the FD&C Act such as providing antibacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits, boosting the activity of genes, or repairing structural damage.
According to the director of the Office of Cosmetics & Color at the FDA, Linda Katz; "The definitions of a 'cosmetic' and of a 'drug' are critical to understanding the warning letters recently issued by FDA related to the claims made for cosmetic products."
She reminds the industry that the FD&C Act defines “cosmetic” as “(1) articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied to the human body or any part thereof for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance, and (2) articles intended for use as a component of such articles; except that such term shall not include soap."
Altough misleading claims are nothing new, Katz says they appear to be escalating in recent years and that as a result, consumers are asking more questions and have raised a number of concerns.