Labeling Claims

Little is more confusing to marketers and cosmetic formulators than product claims regulations. Questions regarding the rules commonly arise, including: What proof is needed? Who decides what can be claimed? What’s the penalty? and Who regulates the claims? When speaking with various governments about cosmetic regulations, I jokingly refer to Steinberg’s First Rule of Regulation: Do not promulgate regulations that you do not have the resources or ability to enforce completely. Why? Because without uniform enforcement, companies do not know which rules to follow or what they can get away with—they always seem to be chasing a competitor that is making prohibited claims without any repercussions. The mentality is, “If they can do it, why can’t I?”

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