What are ACD & ASEAN Cosmetic Labeling Requirements?

What is ASEAN?

ASEAN is short for “The Association of Southeast Asian Nations” which brings together ten Southeast Asian states – Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam – into one organization.


What is the ASEAN Cosmetic Directive?

The ASEAN Cosmetic Directive (ACD) is an agreement among ASEAN countries to harmonise requirements of cosmetic products so as to reduce technical barriers to trade in the region.


What is “cosmetic product” under ASEAN cosmetic regulation?

Under ASEAN Cosmetic Directive (ACD), “cosmetic product” shall mean any substance or preparation intended to be placed in contact with the various external parts of the human body (epidermis, hair system, nails, lips and external genital organs) or with the teeth and the mucous membranes of the oral cavity with a view exclusively or mainly to cleaning them, perfuming them, changing their appearance and/or correcting body odours and/or protecting them or keeping them in good condition.


What are ASEAN Cosmetic Labeling Requirements?
  • Scope and definitions:

Name of the cosmetic product means the name given to a cosmetic product, which may be an invented name, together with a trade mark or the name of the manufacturer;

Immediate packaging means the container or other form of packaging immediately in contact with the cosmetic product;

Outer packaging means the packaging into which is placed the immediate packaging;

Labeling means information written or printed or graphic matter on the immediate or outer packaging and any form of leaflets;

  • Labeling Of Cosmetic Products

1.The following particulars shall appear on the outer packaging of cosmetic products or, where there is no outer packaging, on the immediate packaging of cosmetic products:

a) The name of the cosmetic product and its function, unless it is clear from the presentation of the product;

b) Instructions on the use of the cosmetic product, unless it is clear from the product name or presentation;

c) Full ingredient listing. The ingredients must be declared in descending order of weight at the time they are added. Perfume 4 September 2007 and aromaticcompositions and their raw materials may be referred to by the word “perfume”, “fragrance”, “aroma” or “flavor”. Ingredients in concentrations of less than 1% may be listed in any order after those of concentration of more than 1%.

Coloring agents may be listed in any order after the other ingredients, in accordance with the color index number or denomination adopted in Annex IV.

For decorative cosmetic products marketed in several color shades, all coloring agents used in the range may be listed, provided that the terms “may contain” or “+/-“ be added.

The ingredients shall be specified using the nomenclature from the latest edition of standard references (Refer to appendix A).

Botanicals and extract of botanicals should be identified by its genus and species. The genus may be abbreviated;

The following shall not, however, be regarded as ingredients:

  • Impurities in the raw materials used;
  • Subsidiary technical materials used in the preparation but not present in the final products;
  • Materials used in strictly necessary quantities as solvents, or as carriers, for perfume and aromatic compositions;

d) Country of manufacture;

e) The name and address of the company or person responsible for placing the product on the local market;

f) The contents given by weight or volume, in either metric or both metric and imperial system;

g) The manufacturer’s batch number;

h) The manufacturing or the expiry date of the product in clear terms (e.g. month/year). The date shall be clearly expressed and shall consist either of the month and year or the day, month and year in that order. The date of minimum durability shall be the date until which this product, stored under appropriate conditions, continues to fulfil its initial function and, in particular, remains in conformity with article 3 of ACD. It should be preceded by the words “expiry date” or “best before”. If necessary, this information shall be supplemented by an indication of the conditions which must be satisfied to guarantee the stated durability.

Indication of the expiry date shall be mandatory for cosmetic products the minimum durability of which is less than 30 months.

i) Special precautions to be observed in use, especially those listed in the column “Conditions of use and warnings which must be printed on the label in Annexes __”, which must appear on the label as well as any special precautionary information on the cosmetic products.

Member countries may require specific warnings based on local needs for declaration of ingredients from animal origin. In this case:

i.There must be a statement (of any format) on the product label signaling the presence of ingredients of animal origin;

ii.For ingredients of bovine or porcine origin, the exact animal must be declared;


2.In cases where the size, shape or nature of the container or package does not permit the particulars laid down in paragraphs 1 (a) – (i) to be displayed, the use of leaflets, pamphlets, hang tags, display panel, shrink wrap, etc. shall be allowed. However the following particulars at least shall appear on small immediate packaging:

a) The name of the cosmetic product;

b) The manufacturer’s batch number;


3.The particulars referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2 shall be easily legible, clearly comprehensible and indelible;


4.The particulars listed in paragraph 1 shall appear in English and/or National Language and/or a language understood by the consumer where the product is marketed. Member Countries may require that the information in paragraphs a), b), e), f) and i) be in the national language or a language easily understood by the consumer;


List of Standard References to be used for Cosmetic Ingredient Nomenclature
  1. International Cosmetic Ingredient Dictionary;
  2. British Pharmacopeia;
  3. United States Pharmacopeia;
  4. Chemical Abstract Services;


ZMUni Chinese Cosmetic Regulation Compliance Centre 中贸合规中心

Contact us: info@zmuni.com

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