Researchers work to regulate inhalation risk from cosmetic spray

By Michelle Yeomans

- Last updated on GMT

Researchers work to regulate inhalation risk from cosmetic spray
A group of German scientists from industry institutions like Procter and Gamble and L‘Oreal have published a review paper on how to assess possible inhalation risk from cosmetic spray products.

Its focus is to determine inhalation exposure from spray products whilst developing an approach to compile common principles for risk assessment without interfering with the flexibility of the individual safety assessor.

According to its authors, “Spray products require additional consideration with regards to potential inhalation even if the vast majority of exposure for consumers is through dermal contact​.”

The guidelines outlined in the paper are said to be particularly useful as a support document for SME safety assessors across the industry.

“Many of the methods to ensure product safety of cosmetic sprays in accordance with the requirements of the EC Cosmetics Directive are based on industry experiences which are not necessarily consistent across companies.”


In order to determine if the consumer is at risk, the researchers say steps need to be taken in; “understanding systemic and local exposure of the respiratory tract and using data on local and systemic toxicity to establish margins of safety and/or margins of exposure”, ​for a final risk assessment.

Safety assessors will benefit from having access to improved exposure models and to standardized safety assessment methodologies utilized for spray product evaluation​.”

Aspects to consider

The review also stresses that “it is advisable to measure particle size distribution and other aerosol characteristics and their time-dependent change, including agglomeration, sedimentation and ageing effects”, ​in order to make a thorough safety assessment.

In terms of evaluating the safety of ingredients in sprays from an inhalation point of view, the assessor is said to need to “consider where compounds may come into contact with the respiratory tract and where possible adverse effects may occur​.”

The full list of guidelines on inhalation risk assessment can be found on the multidisciplinary forum for research, Toxicology Letters​.

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