Are mineral oils in cosmetics safe?
The safety of our consumers is very important to NIVEA
Mineral oils are used in various qualities in cosmetics, for example as liquid oils or solid waxes. They are particularly well-suited to many cosmetic products on account of their excellent skin compatibility, their distinct moisturising and protective qualities and their high levels of cleansing performance. They also have film-forming and water-repellent properties.
In addition, they can provide a certain firmness to the cosmetic product and protect the skin from moisture loss.
Yes, cosmetic products that contain mineral oils are safe. Even the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment drew the conclusion in a recent assessment that “mineral oils in cosmetic products are harmless to consumers’ health”.
Consumer safety is of paramount importance to NIVEA. All raw materials used in cosmetic products must be comprehensively tested and meet the highest standards in terms of purity, quality and safety. These requirements also naturally apply to cosmetic raw materials based on mineral oil.
NIVEA uses only highly refined and high-quality mineral oils in its products. The mineral oils used comply with comprehensive legal regulations, such as the EC Cosmetics Regulation, and the quality guidelines are based on the guidelines in the EU Pharmacopoeia. As a result, the mineral oils used are of pharmaceutical quality. The high requirements in terms of the quality and purity of mineral oils that have always applied have also been laid down since 2004 in the recommendations by COLIPA (now: Cosmetics Europe). Before being marketed, all cosmetic products are also tested and assessed in a comprehensive safety report by an appointed safety assessor.
No. Numerous studies confirm that there are no carcinogenic effects from mineral oils of the quality used in cosmetics. They can be viewed on the European Chemicals Agency’s website (ECHA).
Do mineral oils penetrate the skin?
As a rule, the mineral oils used in cosmetic products have a high viscosity and cannot penetrate the skin due to their physical / chemical properties. This has been proven by studies carried out in recent years. They remain on the skin and protect the skin from moisture loss without sealing it off. At the same time, they have a water-repellent function.
Which products should consumers avoid if they are unsure?
All cosmetic products and their ingredients available in the United Kingdom and the EU are safe and can be used safely.
MOAH (Mineral Oil Aromatic Hydrocarbons) are aromatic hydrocarbon compounds. MOAH are largely filtered out of the mineral oils used for cosmetic products during the production and refining process. According to our current level of knowledge, the quantities in which MOAH can still be present, even after high levels of cleaning, are safe for consumers. Mineral oils that still contained MOAH after cleaning were tested again without a potential risk being established.
What is MOSH? Is it safe?
The mineral oils used in cosmetic products are, from a chemical point of view, saturated hydrocarbons, known as MOSH (Mineral Oil Saturated Hydrocarbons). Before using them in cosmetic products, mineral oils and waxes are cleaned to a high level. This ensures that any risk to health and carcinogenic potential in particular are excluded by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).
What have you got to say about the latest results from the Stiftung Warentest product testing foundation?
NIVEA takes the latest results from Stiftung Warentest and their interpretation seriously. We are checking the results in detail. NIVEA believes there is also a need for clarification in the analysis method used by Stiftung Warentest. There have been some considerable differences between the results made public by Stiftung Warentest and the findings from the manufacturer’s corresponding internal investigations.