Cosmetics Regulations in China (CSAR) and the Impact on Labeling

by Danny Lim, on July 7, 2021

In this article we will outline the specific changes implemented by recent regulations for cosmetics in China, and discuss the implications for cosmetics and beauty companies interested in capitalizing on the tremendous growth of the country’s personal care industry.

On January 1st, 2021, the Chinese government put into effect a new piece of legislation titled the Cosmetics Supervision and Administration Regulation (CSAR). The legislation reorganized cosmetics and beauty products into new categories, formulating new rules for how goods in each of these categories can be produced, bought, or sold within China. Some of the most significant changes implemented by CSAR involve augmented labeling provisions for foreign businesses to be able to continue to sell their products within the country.

Specifically, the CSAR has mandated the following changes to all personal care, cosmetic, and beauty labels sold in China:

According to Chemlinked; Instruction for Use of Consumer Products—General Labelling for Cosmetics (GB 5296.3-2008), the following information shall be indicated on labels of the imported cosmetics:

  1. Product name (in line with Requirements on Naming of Cosmetics);
  2. Name and address of the manufacturer, distributor;
  3. Country of origin;
  4. Approval ID number (the ID number on the administrative license or record-filing certificate, such as “国妆备进字J20130000”);
  5. List of ingredient (all ingredients with concentration over 1.0% must be indicated with Chinese INC names and listed in descending order of "quantity"; in absence of INCI name, the corresponding name in Chinese Pharmacopoeia, its chemical or botanical name can also be adopted);
  6. Net content;
  7. Production date and shelf life or the batch number and expiration date;
  8. Warnings (for products containing restricted substance, e.g. Zinc phenolsulfonate, the term "avoid to contact with eyes" shall be indicated on the label; and special use cosmetics e.g. hair dye);
  9. Instruction and storage condition (provided if inadequate storage impacts safety);
  10. Other info (the local distributor or wholesaler can be indicated as well).

There are currently two options for labeling cosmetic products for import into China:

  • Companies may design a label specific to the Chinese market according to the above description
  • Companies may design a China-recognized over-label to be able to affix to imported products sold within the country

While the CSAR has been applauded across the personal care, beauty, and cosmetics industry for opening up many new opportunities for selling these products in what could soon be the largest global market for them, these new labeling provisions are enhanced by a framework for levying fairly significant penalties and fines against companies that fail to comply.

This is where Loftware comes in.

Achieving CSAR Compliance with Loftware

Loftware offers a range of labeling solutions to help organizations transform their labeling processes, deliver greater agility and ensure adherence to regulatory requirements.

Instead of being restricted by different legal and compliance requirements, Loftware’s solutions empower businesses of all sizes to develop the labeling processes they need to maintain competitive advantage across borders. Our dynamic, data driven labeling capabilities allow organizations to meet the demands of ever-evolving regulations such as CSAR, and to use configurable business logics that eliminate the costs and errors associated with managing constantly shifting labeling requirements.

Our solutions are available in both cloud-based and on-premises deployments and can be configured to your organization’s unique needs.

Interested in learning more? Get to grips with Enterprise Labeling and see how you can improve processes to ensure compliance with our Enterprise Labeling for Dummies Guide.