Revised EU Cosmetic Guidance Updates Nanomaterial-specific Considerations

The European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) released its latest guidance on testing and evaluating the safety of cosmetics. The guidance provides information to help stakeholders comply with EU cosmetic legislation and includes a newly updated section on nanomaterials that describes (1) the relevant regulatory definition of a nanomaterial, (2) potential safety issues and (3) information requirements.

The revised SCCS guidance highlights special features of nanomaterials that challenge conventional risk assessment, such as agglomeration/aggregation potential and lack of solubility, and points to more detailed information on nanomaterial safety assessment available elsewhere (such as here [currently under revision], here and here). The guidance notes that, when providing safety information, special attention should be paid to appropriate use of analytical methods, the form of absorbed material (nano or non-nano) and surface modifications. It further indicates that full physical chemical datasets (including information on surface modifications/coatings) and safety data on the core nanomaterial should be provided.

Other notable updates to the SCCS guidance include enhanced emphasis on non-animal testing strategies and use of weight of evidence/genotoxicity and mutagenicity toolbox approaches.