Tuesday, October 23, 2012

FDA Warns Cosmetic Companies to Tone Down Anti-Aging Claims

After years of looking the other way, the FDA is going after cosmetic companies for how they market their products.  In the past two months, the agency sent warning letters to at least six companies, including Avon and Lancôme, for making drug-like anti-aging claims about their products.  As a comparison, according to the FDA's public database, the agency only issued between one to three warning letters per year between 2004 and 2011 (none between 2006 and 2010) regarding similar claims.

Claims made for these products to which the FDA objected include:
  • The at-home answer to wrinkle-filling injections. Start rebuilding collagen in just 48 hours.
  • Rebuild collagen to help plump out lines and wrinkles.
  • Stimulate elastin to help improve elasticity and resilience.
  • Regenerate hydroproteins to help visibly minimize creasing.
  • helps reactivate skin’s repair process to recreate fresh skin & help dramatically reverse visible wrinkles.
  • help boost production of collagen and elastin.
  • See significant deep wrinkle reduction in UV damaged skin, clinically proven.
  • Immediate lifting, lasting repositioning. Inspired by eye-lifting surgical techniques . . . helps recreate a younger, lifted look in the delicate eye area.
Under the federal Food Drug & Cosmetic Act, a product intended to diagnose, mitigate, treat, or prevent disease, or to affect the structure or function of the body is classified as a drug.  If such a product is not generally recognized by qualified experts as safe and effective when used as labeled, it is a “new drug” and requires an approved New Drug Application to be marketed legally in the U.S.

The FDA gave these companies 15 days to respond to the warning letters.  If you have any questions about the warning letters or any claims about your cosmetic products, please contact the firm.

Avon Warning Letter: http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/2012/ucm323738.htm

Lancôme Warning Letter: http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/2012/ucm318809.htm