We all know that fragrances are beneficial to self-esteem. They make people feel more attractive, happier and more motivated. However, it is also true that the essential oils in fragrances can contain one or more chemical components that can cause adverse reactions, including dermatitis, when they come into contact with the skin.

These raw materials are used in many products including skin care for men, women and children, like perfumes, colognes, shampoos, soaps, lotions and sunscreens. They are also in household products, including floor cleaners, disinfectants, waxes, air fresheners and detergents.

How can consumers be sure that a product is not harmful to their health? To guarantee safety and reliability, companies in these industries operate under rigorous technical and scientific standards issued by bodies like the International Fragrance Association (IFRA), which is comprised of the most prestigious fragrance houses, among them, CRAMER.

In 2020, the IFRA approved amendment 49, which contains modifications to the current regulatory framework that experts consider significant. Karen Henríquez, our Fragrance Development and Application Manager, commented, “The revised methodology for Quantitative Risk Assessment for fragrance ingredients (QRA2) is one of the modifications. There is also a new approach to combining the skin sensitization, phototoxicity and systemic toxicity assessments into a single screening, which leads to a change in the IFRA classification system.”

There are currently 12 categories, each of which has subcategories where products are grouped by functional type, usage area and whether the application is rinsed off. The idea is that fragrance companies improve ingredient safety, ultimately benefiting consumers.

To ensure compliance with the amendment following the impending implementation deadline and as it has in the past, the IFRA Compliance Program will select, from pre-selected list of 450 products, 50 in-store products in 10 countries and assess their compliance with the Code of Practice and Standards. If they do not meet the requirements, IFRA works with the manufacturer to make adjustments.

At CRAMER, this amendment is already in full effect. Implementation required updating the information system to adapt the existing formulations, but we worked with our customers to successfully meet the challenge.