In a new study published by JAMA Internal Medicine, a shocking revelation was made regarding an increase in the reporting of adverse events related to cosmetics to the FDA.
The report alludes to approximately 5000 cosmetic-related events reported from 2004 to 2016. When compared to the number of cosmetics products used daily this may not appear to be a considerable number, however with the rise of consumer awareness and demand for naturally-sourced products this research comes both as a surprise and concern.
With the self-regulating nature of the beauty industry, there is a certain sense of responsibility bestowed upon organizations to monitor their R&D and product launches closely. And while companies such as L’Oreal, Colgate Palmolive, and Kimberly-Clark have taken active steps to maintain high ethical standards for years, it is about time this responsibility be shared among all organizations within the beauty industry.
Taking attention to the results of the report, US Senators Dianne Feinstein, Susan Collins, and Amy Klobuchar are sponsoring a bill called the Personal Care Products Safety Act this year. The bill would serve to allow the FDA to issue recalls, increase labelling requirements, and help small businesses meet new mandates. While the proposed bill is strict in its mandate, it may be the right step for the future of ethical beauty.
It is not a matter of whether the market is saturated with 5000 or 50 harmful products, but a matter of how these products have made it to the market in the first place and what can be done to prevent such incidents from occurring again. As beauty serves a social need, it is vital society can build trust in products to empower their well-being without harm.