How Do We Know If a New Cosmetic Product Is Safe?

Updated on February 18, 2021

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Men of today are much more open to using cosmetics and health products than ever. While this change is one that is definitely welcome, the difficulty is that many men are new to the world of cosmetics, and this brings new challenges, especially when there are many unregistered products that are likely to have dangerous effects on your body.

When using new cosmetic products, it’s important to know the processes involved in how these products enter the market. Here’s how you can determine if a new cosmetic product is safe to use.

The Five Stages of Drug and Cosmetic Development

Discovery and Development

Pharmacological companies spend millions of dollars on research. The discovery of new methods, manufacturing techniques, and new designs are the first step in the development of any product. Drug discovery has yielded profits as high as up to $35.2 billion dollars. 

Preclinical Research

Once a new product or process is discovered, the product undergoes a preliminary testing phase. During this phase, the newly-discovered product is tested on animals in order to detect any potential safety risks that could endanger human patients.

Clinical Research

After a product is cleared from preclinical trials, the product then proceeds to human trials, where the product is tested based on stringent criteria. This process requires a clinical trial registration. Companies also need to plan their logistics for clinical trials. A clinical trial involves scientific testing in order to determine the safety and efficacy of a particular product.

FDA Review

The Food and Drug Administration is the regulatory body that determines which products are safe for consumer use. Some of the requirements need for FDA drug approval are:

  • The fulfilment of the first three testing phases, which often means 10 to 15 years of testing prior to approval
  • Fully-documented  research and findings, submitted to the FDA

When a product passes the FDA’s evaluation, the FDA will provide a response from six to 10 months. When a product is FDA-approved, it simply means that the benefits of the product have been found to outweigh the risks. However, it should be noted that not all products are treated in the same manner. For instance, the law does not require cosmetic products and ingredients to have FDA approval before they are introduced into the market. However, this does not mean that the FDA does not impose any regulations on cosmetics, which are subjected to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

Post-Market Safety Monitoring

Even after a product is approved by the FDA and released into the market, the FDA monitors all types of advertising for accuracy. It also looks out for any complaints regarding a product. The FDA conducts routine inspections and if a product is found to be harmful, the FDA has the authority to limit the sales of a particular product.

As a general rule, before consuming a product, it’s important to understand how it affects your body. This is true for all products related to mens’ health, be it male enhancement supplements, prescriptive drugs, or cosmetics.

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