What is a Cosmetic?
Under Section 2 of the Food and Drugs Act, a cosmetic is defined as “any substance or mixture of substances manufactured, sold or represented for use in cleaning, improving or altering the complexion, skin, hair or teeth, and includes deodorants and perfumes.” This is different than drugs and natural health products even though they are all regulated under the Food and Drug Act. The classification of the product depends on its function, purpose, and representation for use (such as claims or recommended purposes). Ingredients in the formula may also help determine the classification. For example, in Canada, ingredients like corticosteroids can only be licensed as drugs whereas Green Tea Leaf Extract may be licensed as a cosmetic product or a natural health product.
Types of Cosmetic Notification Form
This form can be used for new products, amendments, and discontinuation of sales. For new products, you must notify Health Canada within 10 days after you first sell the cosmetic product in Canada. For amendments, you must notify Health Canada of this within 10 days of the change and include the Cosmetic Number in the notification form. For discontinuation of sale, you must notify Health Canada of this within 10 days of the discontinuation and include the Cosmetic Number in the notification form. This notification form must be completed and submitted at the latest 10 days after it is first sold in Canada.
Cosmetic Notification Form
In Canada, it is the Food and Drugs Act and Cosmetics Regulations that require a Cosmetic Notification Form to be submitted by the manufacturer or importer for all cosmetic products. This notification form must be completed and submitted at the latest 10 days after it is first sold in Canada. This form is also used for amendments and discontinuation of sales. This form must include the following information:
- Name and address of the manufacturer of the cosmetic product
- Name of the cosmetic product
- Function of the cosmetic product (i.e. moisturizer, shampoo, conditioner)
- Ingredient list that includes each ingredient’s name and its concentration percentage or concentration range
- Form of the cosmetic product (i.e. foam, liquid oil, semi-solid lotion)
- Name and address Canadian manufacturer, importer or distributor
- Name and address of individual who manufactures or formulates the cosmetic product
- Name and title of individual who signs the notification form
Tips on How to Complete a Cosmetic Notification Form
To complete the Cosmetic Notification Form efficiently, it is recommended to:
- Have a complete list of ingredients ready, including composition information of the formula
- Have a copy of the bilingual product label prepared
- Know who your manufacturer/importer/distributor is and have their contact information on file
- Work with a third-party consulting firm like Quality Smart Solutions, that is familiar with the Canadian Cosmetics Regulations. This way you can have your cosmetic formulas and labels reviewed before submission to minimize any pushback from Health Canada
- Have a copy of the previously submitted notification form and cosmetic number ready if this is an amendment or discontinuation of the sale
How Quality Smart Solutions can help
QSS offers regulatory services from registering your cosmetic products to reviewing your cosmetic labels. Our experts are here to help and offer any cosmetic-related regulatory advice!