Cosmetic Analysis FAQ

Notable effect section lets you know what the product does apart from its basic product function – for example we all know a cleanser helps cleanse your skin, but can the cleanser help you further than that?

Here you will be able to see at a quick glance if the product can actually live up to its claims based on its ingredients and formulation. We currently have 5 notable effects that we keep track of:

  • Acne-Fighting
  • Anti-Aging
  • Brightening
  • Promotes Wound Healing
  • UV Protection

You will be able to see which ingredient is responsible for these effects by putting your mouse over the effect or by referring to the notable ingredient section.

The ingredients responsible for notable effects in a product will be listed under the notable ingredient section.

It is important to note that, despite a product containing a notable ingredient, we cannot 100% assure you that the product will be able to replicate that studied effects of the ingredient. Many times, the effectiveness of a product will depend on the amount/percentage of the specific ingredient it contains. Even if a product has a tiny amount of it, they are allowed to put it on the ingredient label. 

This is why we always recommend for people who have tried products to write reviews to help the Skincarisma community know your personal experience. It helps people get a full evaluation of a product to see if it’s effective as it seems to be!

Absolutely! We’re still a work in progress so we don’t claim to have every single great ingredient flagged for people to see. If you believe an ingredient should be flagged for everyone to know about, let us know and we’ll do our research to see if it fits the criteria :)

You can email us at snails@skincarisma.com about this!
We’ve flagged/identified ingredients that have been shown to be either good or bad for 3 skin profiles – oily, dry and sensitive skin.

Within the bars - the green part represents of the number of ingredients that are good for the certain skin profile and the red part represents the number of bad ingredients.
Not necessarily! These are just indicators of the ingredients that have been studied to be bad – you can use this information as a starting point. You may find that although you fall in a certain skin profile, the relevant ingredients may not affect you in negative way compared to other people with the same skin profile.

If you want to be completely safe, then you can choose to follow it closely.
Both these ratings assess the health safety of ingredients in cosmetic products and have different scales on how they are assessed. You can use the charts to make a decision on whether or not you would like to use the product considering the health safety of its ingredients.
Directly from their website: “The Environmental Working Group’s mission is to empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. With breakthrough research and education, we drive consumer choice and civic action. We are a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to protecting human health and the environment.”

EWG is one of the few organizations that have curated and compiled data from multiples sources to create a rating for cosmetic ingredients which is why we’ve decided to use their score. For more information regarding EWG you can visit their website directly.

The EWG score consists of between 1 - 10 and falls in a category of low, medium, high risk and unknown. Unknown means there is currently no data available for it. The distribution of it is as follows:

1 – 2: Low Risk
3 – 6: Medium Risk
7 – 10: High Risk
Directly from their website: "The Cosmetic Ingredient Review was established in 1976 by the industry trade association (then the Cosmetic, Toiletry, and Fragrance Association, now the Personal Care Products Council), with the support of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Consumer Federation of America. Although funded by the Council, CIR and the review process are independent from the Council and the cosmetics industry.

The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) studies individual chemical compounds as they are used in cosmetic products. CIR relies heavily on the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients (INCI) when identifying the ingredients to be assessed. "

CIR is another organisation that has a core focus of cosmetic ingredient safety. For more information regarding the CIR you can visit their website directly.
You will notice that the CIR Finding ratings are on a different scale compared to EWG's. We currently use 3 of their ratings:

A - Safe as Used
B - Safe with Qualifications
C - Insufficient Data to Support Safety
Could you explain to what the Cosmetic Functions under the ingredient name?

Each ingredient may have several functions. Function being the purpose of the ingredient in the product. Below is a complete list of cosmetic functions directly from the “Official Journal of the European Union: Amending Decision 96/335/EC establishing an inventory and a common nomenclature of ingredients employed in cosmetic products”.

ABRASIVE Removes materials from various body surfaces or aids mechanical tooth cleaning or improves gloss.
ABSORBENT Takes up water- and/or oil-soluble dissolved or finely dispersed substances.
ANTICAKING Allows free flow of solid particles and thus avoids agglomeration of powdered cosmetics into lumps or hard masses.
ANTICORROSIVE Prevents corrosion of the packaging.
ANTIDANDRUFF Helps control dandruff.
ANTIFOAMING Suppresses foam during manufacturing or reduces the tendency of finished products to generate foam.
ANTIMICROBIAL Helps control the growth of micro-organisms on the skin.
ANTIOXIDANT Inhibits reactions promoted by oxygen, thus avoiding oxidation and rancidity.
ANTIPERSPIRANT Reduces perspiration.
ANTIPLAQUE Helps protect against plaque.
ANTISEBORRHEIC Helps control sebum production.
ANTISTATIC Reduces static electricity by neutralising electrical charge on a surface.
ASTRINGENT Contracts the skin.
BINDING Provides cohesion in cosmetics.
BLEACHING Lightens the shade of hair or skin.
BUFFERING Stabilises the pH of cosmetics.
BULKING Reduces bulk density of cosmetics.
CHELATING Reacts and forms complexes with metal ions which could affect the stability and/or appearance of cosmetics.
CLEANSING Helps to keep the body surface clean.
COSMETIC COLORANT Colours cosmetics and/or imparts colour to the skin and/or its appendages.
DENATURANT Renders cosmetics unpalatable. Mostly added to cosmetics containing ethyl alcohol.
DEODORANT Reduces or masks unpleasant body odours.
DEPILATORY Removes unwanted body hair.
DETANGLING Reduces or eliminates hair intertwining due to hair surface alteration or damage and, thus, helps combing.
EMOLLIENT Softens and smooths the skin.
EMULSIFYING Promotes the formation of intimate mixtures of non-miscible liquids by altering the interfacial tension.
EMULSION STABILISING Helps the process of emulsification and improves emulsion stability and shelf-life.
FILM FORMING Produces, upon application, a continuous film on skin, hair or nails.
FOAMING Traps numerous small bubbles of air or other gas within a small volume of liquid by modifying the surface tension of the liquid.
FOAM BOOSTING Improves the quality of the foam produced by a system by increasing one or more of the following properties: volume, texture and/or stability.< /td>
GEL FORMING Gives the consistency of a gel (a semi-solid preparation with some elasticity) to a liquid preparation.
HAIR CONDITIONING Leaves the hair easy to comb, supple, soft and shiny and/or imparts volume, lightness, gloss, etc.
HAIR DYEING Colours hair.
HAIR FIXING Permits physical control of hairstyle.
HAIR WAVING OR STRAIGHTENING Modifies the chemical structure of the hair, allowing it to be set in the style required.
HUMECTANT Holds and retains moisture.
HYDROTROPE Enhances the solubility of substance which is only slightly soluble in water.
KERATOLYTIC Helps eliminate the dead cells of the stratum corneum.
MASKING Reduces or inhibits the basic odour or taste of the product.
MOISTURISING Increases the water content of the skin and helps keep it soft and smooth.
NAIL CONDITIONING Improves the cosmetic characteristics of the nail.
OPACIFYING Reduces transparency or translucency of cosmetics.
ORAL CARE Provides cosmetic effects to the oral cavity, e.g. cleansing, deodorising, protecting.
OXIDISING Changes the chemical nature of another substance by adding oxygen or removing hydrogen.
PEARLESCENT Imparts a nacreous appearance to cosmetics.
PLASTICISER Softens and makes supple another substance that otherwise could not be easily deformed, spread or worked out.
PRESERVATIVE Inhibits primarily the development of micro-organisms in cosmetics. All preservatives listed are substances on the positive list of preservatives (Annex VI to the cosmetics Directive).
PROPELLANT Generates pressure in an aerosol pack, expelling contents when the valve is opened. Some liquefied propellants can act as solvents.
REDUCING Changes the chemical nature of another substance by adding hydrogen or removing oxygen.
REFATTING Replenishes the lipids of the hair or of the top layers of the skin.
REFRESHING Imparts a pleasant freshness to the skin.
SKIN CONDITIONING Maintains the skin in good condition.
SKIN PROTECTING Helps to avoid harmful effects to the skin from external factors.
SMOOTHING Seeks to achieve an even skin surface by decreasing roughness or irregularities.
SOLVENT Dissolves other substances.
SOOTHING Helps lightening discomfort of the skin or of the scalp.
STABILISING Improves ingredients or formulation stability and shelf-life.
SURFACTANT Lowers the surface tension of cosmetics as well as aids the even distribution of the product when used.
TANNING Darkens the skin with or without exposure to UV.
TONIC Produces a feeling of well-being on skin and hair.
UV ABSORBER Protects the cosmetic product from the effects of UV light.
UV FILTER Filters certain UV rays in order to protect the skin or the hair from harmful effects of these rays. All UV filters listed are substances on the positive list of UV filters (Annex VII to the Cosmetics Directive).
VISCOSITY CONTROLLING Increases or decreases the viscosity of cosmetics
This just means we have the ingredient on our database, but there is currently no information available about it. If any new information comes up, we will update it.

If you happen to see something missing, let us know!
Awesome that you've spotted a correction.

You can let us know and provide us with more information by clicking the red flag on the product page you see the error and fill in the form. We'll review the correction within 6-12 hours. We'll let you know once it's fixed and if it's been done, we'll award you with some points!

General FAQ

The product ingredients should be very accurate! Most of them are sourced from the brands website or other third party sources such as reputable retailers. If you believe a product does not contain the correct ingredient, please let us know by clicking the red flag on the product page and selecting incorrect ingredients. You can let us know the correct ingredients - you'll get some points if we find out your suggestion is correct!

There might be times where the ingredients do not exactly match, this is because a single ingredient may have different variations in its name. We've these different name variations into just one name, rest assured - the outcome on the cosmetic analysis remains entirely the same!
Great! A missing product means you'll be able to earn points for adding it - You can add the product on this page here, be sure to provide as much information as you possibly can, it'll help the next person as much as possible (and plus, we'll give you bonus points ;))
After submitting your product, we will manually review it within 6-12 hours to ensure we've got all the right information. We'll also send your account a notification once your product request has been either approved or rejected.
This can sometimes happen, especially if the ingredient has many spelling variations of it. Or it could be the rare cause we don’t have the ingredient on our database. Simply let us know the ingredient and we’ll fix it for you.
Our first suggestion is to always participate amongst the community and help others out. You can do this by adding helpful/indepth reviews, adding new products, answering product questions and adding suggestions for any errors you may spot. If you're interested in contributing even further beyond this, feel free to get in touch with us at snails@skincarisma.com
It happens :( You can report all bugs/technical errors through our suggestion/feedback form - just let us know in detail the issue. Please let us know the URL, what you were trying to do and the error that occurred.
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If you ever want to buy anything on Amazon, simply use this URL (bookmark it!) - it'll help us tremendously - thanks!