Have you been making soaps and cosmetics for family and friends (as gifts) but are looking to take it to the next level? Then craft markets are the logical next step, but what are the Rules & Regulations for Legally Selling Products.
If you're planning on selling your products (online or over the counter/market) then it's time to get prepared not scared!
This post is all about Rules & Regulations for Legally Selling Products. Our tips and information to help ease the process! Each product is different and not all products require all the steps, so make sure you research your niche to find what is suited to your creations.
What do you need to do to sell your products legally?
• Firstly formulate your products and trial them. This can be done by giving samples to your friends and family to trial. It is important to understand that this means gifting to your friends and family with no exchange of goods (money etc.). It is your responsibility to manage this. You also need to be aware of quantities, and make your family and friends aware of the rules surrounding the products you gift. You don't want to gift your Cousin 10 x Soap bars, that they talk to their friends about and offer to give them one. It doesn't work like that.
• You cannot 'donate' to the general public without being legally compliant. For your safety and your consumers. • Obtain a Cosmetic Product Safety Report (CPSR). This is a service we provide and can help with the steps if you get stuck. You can find our CPSRs here. A CPSR is required for any cosmetic product that comes into contact with the skin. It is not required for candles, room sprays, shower steamers for example.
• Notify the Cosmetic Products Notification Portal (CPNP). This is a database for the purposes of market surveillance, analysis, evaluation and consumer information. (They need to be contacted even if you're selling pre-assessed products)
• Get the right insurance. Public liability is usually required. Most insurance providers will have more information. Sometimes the market itself is covered. They will let you know and usually ask for a donation to be included under their insurance. We highly recommend getting this, even from the beginning of your process to ensure you are covered.
• Get testing if required for your products. For example, you can not claim something is antibacterial without the correct testing in place to prove this.
Did you know animal products don't require CPSRs?
Cosmetic legislation ensures that all cosmetic products that are on the market in the UK (and the EU) are safe. As well as being fit for purpose. It is regulated by the European legislation, the Cosmetics Regulation (EC) No. 1223/2009. Click here to see.
Article 4.2 of the regulations states:
“For each cosmetic product placed on the market, the responsible person shall ensure compliance with the relevant obligations set out in this Regulation.”
If you are making and selling products then you are the person that is held responsible for them. You will need to meet all the obligations set out in the regulations. It is your responsibility to ensure you are complying with the regulations. As well as carrying out all the necessary record keeping and safety precautions.
The Cosmetic Regulation controls what may or may not be put into a cosmetic. The primary purpose of these laws is to protect human safety. It is important that your future customer has confidence in the safety of your products.
What products does this include?
So, if you sell any of these products, they all come under the 'cosmetics' umbrella. Meaning they will need to comply with the specific regulations:
• Soaps • Shower Gels • Bath Bombs • Bath Salts • Body Scrubs • Lip Balm • Shampoos • Hair Dyes • Skin Toners • Moisturisers • Cleansers • Creams • Antiperspirants • Sunscreens • Oral Hygiene Products, such as toothpastes • Fine Fragrances & Other Perfumery Products
It can seem quite daunting and can initially be an expensive process. Don't worry, once the ball starts rolling, it will improve productivity within your business (no matter how big or small). As well as give you the ability to proudly sell your products legally, and who knows where it will take you... If you don't believe us watch 'The Story of The Soap Kitchen' and see how our Director's began.
Sounds Too Scary?
If however, this is all terrifying and too much information, why not start by selling handmade pre-assessed toiletries? This will give you the opportunity to be creative by adding your own branding etc, but none of the 'legal' hassle. Please be aware though you will still need to alert The Cosmetic Product Notification Portal (CPNP). There are many amazing suppliers that offer this wonderful service.
Here To Help
We have lots of information about CPSR's, there is a dedicated folder in the drop down menu under Tips & Tricks. This has flagged any relevant articles, various information on our FAQ's and a whole section on our main website.
Please can someone explain the rules regarding a trade approved scale?
Replied by: Ellie Major On 2024-01-08 Hello, thank you for commenting. Trade approved scales are recommended and required if you wish to use the e-mark for indication of the weight or volume. Here are a couple of articles which go into a bit more detail: https://www.gov.uk/weights-measures-and-packaging-the-law/equipment-and-records + https://www.inscale-scales.co.uk/blogs/weighing-scales-blog/a-guide-to-trade-approvals-what-is-a-trade-approved-scale I hope this helps.