Cosmetics Europe fights ingredient misinformation with new app

By Julia Wray | Published: 30-Nov-2023

The COSMILE Europe app is available in eight languages and aims to demystify more than 30,000 ingredients

The cosmetics industry is fighting back against misinformation about beauty ingredients, this time with an app.

Cosmetics Europe, the European cosmetic industry trade association, has boosted the accessibility of its cosmetic ingredients database for consumers by launching a COSMILE app.

This new tool makes its debut less than a year after the COSMILE database went live. 

COSMILE Europe provides access to information on almost 30,000 ingredients used in cosmetics that is said to be reliable, verified and scientifically supported. 

The new app is available in eight languages, with more to come. 

The online database itself launched with 14 language options when it was unveiled in February. 

Using the COSMILE Europe app, consumers can search for ingredient information by scanning the ingredients list on the label of a product; search for information on an individual ingredient manually; or scan a product barcode to retrieve information about the product and its ingredients list. 

However, Cosmetics Europe stressed that, while the barcode scanner is available via the app, it is not available for all products. 

It added that as the app becomes established in each country, more products will become available moving forward. 

“As an industry we are committed to providing information on the ingredients in our cosmetic products in a simple and easily accessible way,” said John Chave, Director General of Cosmetics Europe. 

“Now with the COSMILE Europe app, with its new ways of searching and tracking ingredients, accessing this information has never been easier. 

“We hope this tool will contribute to helping European citizens choose their cosmetic products.”

The app was first developed by the German Cosmetic, Toiletry, Perfumery and Detergent Association (IKW), but has been rebranded as COSMILE Europe. 

To further personalise the app, users can create a list of favourite products from the cosmetics they have scanned to consult the products’ ingredients. 

An ‘insights’ section, meanwhile, provides information on EU cosmetics and ingredients safety laws, as well as answers to useful frequently asked questions about cosmetics and their ingredients.

Cosmetics Europe’s COSMILE Europe is the latest beauty sector initiative developed to educate consumers about the industry. 

Earlier this year, beauty brand Paula’s Choice launched the Beautypedia Skin Care Ingredient Checker, aiming to “cut through the jargon, misinformation and hype” to help consumers buy products that are right for their skin care type and concern.

A report in August, published by Unilever brand Simple, found 80% of people believe that the beauty industry is rife with misinformation.

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