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Will cosmetic regulation kill independent beauty brands?

by AirTalk®

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A general view of a makeup kit with Le Metier de Beaute during the alice + olivia by Stacey Bendet Runway Show at NeueHouse Los Angeles on April 13, 2016 in Hollywood, California. John Sciulli/Getty Images for Le Metier de Beaute

A new bill has been proposed to give the Food and Drug Administration authority to test cosmetic ingredients, as well as recall products that prove to be unsafe for consumers.

Senators Dianne Feinstein, D-California, and Susan Collins, R-Maine have co-authored the Personal Care Products Safety Act. In addition to adding regulations to a virtually unregulated industry, the bill would require cosmetic brands to pay roughly $20 million in annual fees. This would contribute to the total cost of making sure certain ingredients are safe.

According to a New York Times article, these fees are causing a split between industry heavyweights like Estee Lauder and Johnson & Johnson, and smaller, independent brands like Mary Kay. A counter-bill has been proposed by Texas Congressman Pete Sessions. His bill would require cosmetic companies to report any “adverse events” as a result of product use, without recalls or annual fees.

What do you think of the Personal Care Products Safety Act? Should cosmetics companies be regulated at the cost of potentially hurting independent businesses?


Jamie Court, President and Chairman of the Board, Consumer Watchdog

Walter Olson, senior fellow at the Cato Institute’s Center for Constitutional Studies

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