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California's 'Toxic-free Cosmetics' Act Moves to the Governor

Contact Author Rachel Grabenhofer
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Assembly Bill 2762, the 'Toxic-free Cosmetics' Act, moves forward for the governor's approval after it passed in the California legislature on August 30, 2020.

As previously reported, the Act provides that beginning on January 1, 2025, "no person or entity shall manufacture, sell, deliver, hold or offer for sale, in commerce any cosmetic product that contains any of the following [12] intentionally added ingredie­nts..." (Note: the Act does provide for unavoidable trace contaminants that occur during manufacturing.) 

12 Ingredients of Concern

  1. Dibutyl phthalate (CAS no. 84-74-2)
  2. Diethylhexyl phthalate (CAS no. 117-81-7)
  3. Formaldehyde (CAS no. 50-00-0)
  4. Paraformaldehyde (CAS no. 30525-89-4)
  5. Methylene glycol (CAS no. 463-57-0)
  6. Quaternium-15 (CAS no. 51229-78-8)
  7. Mercury (CAS no. 7439-97-6)
  8. Isobutylparaben (CAS no. 4247-02-3)
  9. Isopropylparaben (CAS no. 4191-73-5)
  10. m-Phenylenediamine and its salts (CAS no. 108-45-2)
  11. o-Phenylenediamine and its salts (CAS no. 95-54-5)
  12. The following per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and their salts:
    • (A) Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS); heptadecafluorooctane-1-sulfonic acid (CAS no. 1763-23-1)
    • (B) Potassium perfluorooctanesulfonate; potassium heptadecafluorooctane-1-sulfonate (CAS no. 2795-39-3)
    • (C) Diethanolamine perfluorooctane sulfonate (CAS 70225-14-8)
    • (D) Ammonium perfluorooctane sulfonate; ammonium heptadecafluorooctanesulfonate (CAS 29081-56-9)
    • (E) Lithium perfluorooctane sulfonate; lithium heptadecafluorooctanesulfonate (CAS 29457-72-5)
    • (F) Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)(CAS no. 335-67-1)
    • (G) Ammonium pentadecafluorooctanoate (CAS no. 3825-26-1)
    • (H) Nonadecafluorodecanoic acid (CAS no. 355-76-2)
    • (I) Ammonium nonadecafluorodecanoate (CAS no. 3108-42-7)
    • (J) Sodium nonadecafluorodecanoate (CAS no. 3830-45-3)
    • (K) Perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA)(CAS no. 375-95-1)
    • (L) Sodium heptadecafluorononanoate (CAS no. 21049-39-8)
    • (M) Ammonium perfluorononanoate (CAS no. 4149-60-4)


A related California Assembly Floor Analysis regarding the proposed Act offers the following explanatory background: "Cosmetic products are sold to consumers across California, including to children who are still in the formative years of development. These products are used as part of daily beauty and cleansing routines, often times on the skin's most sensitive areas, like the face, eyelids, and lips. Cosmetic products are most heavily used by women, including those of childbearing age, increasing the likelihood of exposing mothers, fetuses and nursing children to substances that can cause cancer and reproductive toxicity. For these reasons, it is critically important that cosmetic products are safe, properly labeled, and free of contamination."

It continues, "Neither the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) nor [the California Department of Public Health] (CDPH) require pre-market safety testing, review or approval of cosmetic products. Under both the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and the state Sherman Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, cosmetics and their ingredients are not required to be approved before they are sold to the public, and the FDA does not have the authority to require manufacturers to file health and safety data on cosmetic ingredients or to order a recall of a dangerous cosmetic product."

The analysis adds that this bill, AB 2762, bans a list (see above) of specified ingredients from cosmetic products consistent with the European Union's (EU) Annex II of regulation No. 1223/2009, which lists substances prohibited in cosmetic products sold in the EU. All of these ingredients have been banned in the EU under Annex II.




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