Sunscreen: Regulatory issues viewed by Cosmed


Regulatory affairs manager, COSMED, France


The regulations, which directly or indirectly regulate sunscreens, are constantly evolving due to consumer expectations, environmental issues, Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) assessments in terms of nano and endocrine disruptors. This raises the question of a formula conforming worldwide.

2020 was difficult for sunscreens between the health crisis and the media controversy over UV filters. Sales fell by 9.5% in retail stores.
However, manufacturers meet consumer expectations with formulas increasingly respectful of the skin and the environment. Indeed, 82% of French people consider the composition of a sunscreen product to be essential, making it the 2nd most important criterion of choice after the sun protection factor.


For several years, consumer associations have been disapproving sunscreen products because of their lack of effectiveness, the testing methods used or their environmental impact.


In Europe, the latest polemic arises from a Franco-American study (1) concluding that octocrylene poses a risk by degrading into benzophenone during the life of the product; benzophenone being a substance classified as a carcinogen by ATP 18. But does this call into question the use of octocrylene as a UV filter? As benzophenone is present as an impurity, it is up to the safety assessor to evaluate the quantity of this su ...