A New Bill Calls For Stricter Regulations on the Cosmetics Industry

There's a new bill that could give the government more regulation power when it comes to your beauty products.

The bi-partisan proposal could grant the FDA broader jurisdiction over the cosmetics industry. Instead of just asking companies to voluntarily recall products and disclose adverse side effects, it would make doing so a legal requirement. Any consumer reports of death, disfigurement or hospitalization as a result of using certain beauty products will need to be reported within 15 business days. All other reactions such as rashes must be disclosed in an annual report.

“This bill is the best hope for meaningful cosmetics regulation in many years,” said Scott Faber, vice president of government affairs for the Environmental Working Group in an interview with the New York Times. “Most consumers don’t have much faith in voluntary company commitments. The absence of a credible regulator has undermined consumer confidence in everyday products.”

The pending legislation also calls for annual safety studies of the five different chemicals that have concerned the public for awhile now such as propylparaben, a common cosmetic preservative, Methylene glycol, which used to be found in some hair-straightening treatments and lead acetate, an ingredient used in men’s hair dye.

Although many bills like this have been proposed before but never passed, proponents are hopeful, citing that such regulation is needed.  “We do feel that it’s very important that the F.D.A.’s authority in this space bring peace of mind to consumers and at the same time reflect modern science and advancements,” said Darrel Jodrey, the executive director of federal affairs at Johnson & Johnson in a New York Times interview.