Essential preservation

Despite negative press surrounding certain ingredients, preservatives are an essential part of the formulator’s palette. John Woodruff looks at recent developments

Preservatives are added to all manner of products in the personal care and cosmetics industry. They inhibit the growth of bacteria and fungi, thereby increasing the product’s shelf life and consumer safety. Current EC Regulation No 1223/2009[1] defines preservatives as substances that are exclusively or mainly intended to inhibit the development of micro-organisms in a cosmetic product.

EC 1223/2009 came into effect in July 2013 and Article 14 states that cosmetic products should not contain preservatives other than those listed in Annex V and preservatives which are listed there but not used in accordance with the conditions laid down in that Annex. In the introduction to EC 1223/2009 it also states that substances that are intended to be used as preservatives should be listed in Annex V in order to be allowed for this usage.

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