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February 7, 2020

EC Requests Scientific Advice from SCCS on the Safety of Nanomaterials in Cosmetics

Lynn L. Bergeson Carla N. Hutton

The Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) announced on February 6, 2020, that the European Commission (EC) has requested scientific advice on the safety of nanomaterials in cosmetics.  The EC seeks advices on two questions:

  • The EC requests that SCCS determine the nanomaterials, as published in the recent catalogue of nanomaterials of 2019, for which specific concerns can be identified and justified to establish a priority list of nanomaterials for risk assessment (Article 16(4) Reg.1223/2009). The EC asks that SCCS provide a description of the specific concerns that have been identified.  According to the request, this process should be based on the currently available scientific literature and SCCS’s expert judgment.
  • For the nanomaterials with inconclusive SCCS opinions, the EC requests that SCCS assess if a potential risk can be identified according to Article 16(6) Reg.1223/2009. Such assessment, regardless of the data previously submitted by the respective applicants, should be based on the available scientific literature and SCCS’s expert judgment (i.e., systemic or local availability; harmful effects specifically related to nanoform; surface catalyzed reactions in nanoform, absorption (or potential absorption) from dermal and inhalation routes, or potential of nanoform to deliver ionic forms).  The inconclusive SCCS opinions specified in the request include Colloidal Silver (nano) (SCCS/1596/18), Styrene/Acrylates copolymer (nano) + Sodium styrene/Acrylates copolymer (nano) (SCCS/1595/18), and Silica, Hydrated Silica, and Silica Surface Modified with Alkyl Silylates (nanoform) (SCCS/1545/15).

To avoid conflicting opinions with other bodies, the EC invites SCCS to consult the Scientific Committee on Health, Environmental and Emerging Risks (SCHEER).