What is the difference between listed and non-listed preservatives?

Why are cosmetic preservatives controversial?

As a beauty professional, you probably use cosmetic products that contain preservatives every day. But do you really know what they are and what they are used for? Preservatives in natural cosmetics are ingredients added to cosmetic products to extend their shelf life and prevent the growth of bacteria and mold.

Without them, you could be slathering yourself with expired cream or giving your clients makeup with bacteria, which isn't exactly glamorous.

There are two types of cosmetic preservatives : listed preservatives and unlisted preservatives .

But what is the difference between these two categories?

What opposes them?

Green Spa, your supplier of organic and natural beauty products, explains everything about this dichotomy that must be understood at all costs.

Preservatives listed

What we call listed preservatives are in reality preservatives authorized by the Cosmetic Regulations.

They have been evaluated and approved for safe use in cosmetic products, by regulatory bodies such as the European Union.

When a preservative is listed, you know in advance that it has been tested for safety and effectiveness.

The preservatives listed are also regulated as to their maximum quantity usable in a cosmetic product.

In specific sectors such as organic and natural cosmetics, not all listed preservatives are authorized. But we will come back to this point!

Unlisted preservatives

As for unlisted preservatives, it’s quite the opposite!

These are preservatives which are not authorized by the Cosmetic Regulations. They are also called unregulated preservatives, and are often excluded from the authorization list because conservation is not their primary role.

They can also have harmful side effects when applied to the skin.

In all cases, these are preservatives to avoid: they have not been tested, their reliability and their effectiveness are therefore not proven.

Which preservatives listed are authorized in organic cosmetics?

So let's return to the question of preservatives in the field of natural cosmetics.

As you probably know, natural and organic cosmetics follow their own rules. And this is for example the case in the choice of conservatives.

Out of 59 preservatives listed, only 5 are authorized in the field of organic cosmetics . It is :

  • Benzoic acid;
  • Benzyl alcohol;
  • Salicylic acid;
  • Sorbic acid;
  • Dehydroacetic acid.

These are conservatives considered “nature -identical” . Which means that they are found in nature, even if it is complicated to extract sufficient quantities for cosmetics.

How to choose the right beauty products based on their composition?

In the selection of your cosmetic products and treatments, one criterion is added: the choice of the right preservatives!

Before selecting the cosmetics that you are going to offer in your beauty salon, Green Spa recommends that you rigorously study their composition.

Do you need additional information to choose your products? Green Spa explains everything to you: