Decalogue of good practices for cosmetic products

It is essential not to use cosmetic products once they have expired, as it is not recommended to change them or mix them. The recommendations of good practices for the use of cosmetic products are a great help for our care.

The AEMPS -Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products- has published a document called « Decalogue of good practices for cosmetic products «. The objective of the same is to avoid problems related to the use of these products, because a series of misuses and practices of cosmetic products that may pose a risk to public health have been identified.
The Spanish Cosmetovigilance System, which is in charge of ensuring the safety of all cosmetic products on the market, has detected that many of the problems related to cosmetics come from misuse by consumers . And, although they are a minority, they can be avoided by following the recommendations that we explain throughout the article.
Let’s see next what these recommendations are.

1. Always read the labeling

A good practice for cosmetic products is to always read the labeling of the one that we are going to use . Likewise, you must also consult the instructions for use and pay special attention to all the warnings and precautions that are indicated.
In this way, we will be informing ourselves of the components that this product contains and we will avoid, for example, adverse reactions of certain substances to which we know we have an allergy.

2. Use the product for the purpose for which it was manufactured

The second point of the decalogue of good practices for cosmetic products is quite clear. Cosmetic products should not be used for a purpose not intended by the manufacturer . Thus, we should not, for example, use a hand cream to try to hydrate the skin of the face.

3. Respect the expiration dates and the period after opening

It is essential not to use cosmetic products once they have expired , or after the maximum date that a product supports after it has been opened . The reason for this is that molecules, after a certain time, can modify their chemical structure. Moisture in the environment or light are conditions that cause them to react chemically and turn into other different molecules.
In this way, if we use a product outside the recommended dates, it is possible that the composition has changed. If so, either we will not obtain the desired effects or undesirable and harmful effects will occur.

4. Keep the products properly

Similar to the previous point, it is essential to properly store cosmetic products – avoiding exposure to extreme temperatures and direct sunlight – as well as keeping cosmetic containers clean and tightly closed. Otherwise, the composition of the product can be modified and produce the same effects that would occur in expired products.

5. Wash your hands before using the cosmetic product

This habit is essential to avoid both infections and unwanted reactions in the area where we use the product . The hands are full of microorganisms and dirt .
In case of not having good hygiene, we will transport all these substances to the area where we apply the product. The consequences can be a skin infection or an allergic reaction of the dermatitis type.

6. Do not share products that may be in contact with fluids

Some cosmetic products, such as eye pencils or lipsticks, are in contact with fluids from our body. By sharing them, we would be in contact with other people’s fluids. Shared fluids pose a possibility for disease transmission.

7. Do not mix products or add additional substances to the initial product

Many people modify the initial composition of cosmetic products , since they think that they can obtain a more marked or more beneficial effect . This habit is wrong and can cause undesired effects on the consumer.

8. Avoid the transfer of products not intended by the manufacturer.

The packaging of cosmetic products is manufactured in a specific way to guarantee its good conservation. Transferring a product to another container will not guarantee this conservation , which may cause a modification of the content of the same.

9. Discard products that are not reusable

There are some community dispensers that are not reusable. If the manufacture of the container already specifies from the beginning that it cannot be reused, then they should be discarded once the content has been consumed .

10. Throw away those products that look bad

When we are going to use a cosmetic product that has any alteration in its color, smell or consistency, we must throw it away and not use it. It can be damaged and it can irritate the area in which we are going to apply it .

Conclusion on good practices for cosmetic products

It is essential to follow this decalogue of good practices for cosmetic products published by AEMPS. If we put it into practice we will save ourselves many discomforts and concerns related to the unwanted effects triggered by this type of product.
Although it seems to us that cosmetics are harmless, we must understand that their composition is chemical and they apply care very similar to that used in medicines. Let us be careful when using them and, in addition to acquiring them in certified places for sale, let us preserve them correctly.

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