Monday, February 12, 2018Cosmetic regulations

Wales and Scotland: a ban of plastic microbeads in cosmetics to come

© CosmeticOBS-L'Observatoire des Cosmétiques

Following the action already taken by England (as by many other Member States and third countries), Wales and Scotland now notify the WTO of their draft regulations aimed at to prohibit microbeads as an ingredient in the manufacture of rinse-off personal care products. Two texts quite similar, but which still has some differences. The measure should apply in both cases by the end of June 2018.

Reading time
~ 9 minutes


Notification date

1 February 2018

Products covered

Cosmetics and Personal Care products

Title of the notified document

The Environmental Protection (Microbeads) (Wales) Regulations 2018

Description of content

The draft regulations prohibit the use of microbeads as an ingredient in the manufacture of rinse-off personal care products and the sale of any such products containing microbeads.

In the draft regulations:
• "microbead" means any water-insoluble solid plastic particle of less than or equal to 5mm in any dimension;
• "plastic" means a synthetic polymeric substance that can be moulded, extruded or physically manipulated into various solid forms and that retains its final manufactured shape during use in its intended applications;
• "rinse-off personal care product" means any substance, or mixture of substances, manufactured for the purpose of being applied to any relevant human body part in the course of any personal care treatment, by an application which entails at its completion the prompt and specific removal of the product (or any residue of the product) by washing or rinsing with water, rather than leaving it to wear off or wash off, or be absorbed or shed, in the course of time;
• and for this purpose -
(a) a "personal …

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