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Cosmetics Microbiology

Cosmetics are products of chemical or natural origin dedicated specifically for use in skin and mucosa. Companies and individuals who manufacture or distribute cosmetics are legally responsible for the safety of their products. This includes, for example, making sure cosmetics are free of harmful microorganisms. The constant development of the cosmetic industry has generated the necessity to carry out microbiological analysis on the raw materials used in the industrial production of cosmetics as well as the final products, with the purpose of obtaining products of good microbiological quality. Cosmetic products are recognized to be substrates for the survival and development of a large variety of microorganisms, since they possess some of the nutrients that facilitate growth such as: lipids, polysaccharides, alcohol, proteins, amino acids, glucosides, esteroids, peptides, and vitamins. Also, the conditions of readiness (oxygenation, pH, temperature, osmotic degree, superficial activity, perfume, and essential oils) present in the cosmetic products favour microbial multiplication.

Some of the ways cosmetics may become contaminated with bacteria or fungi are—

  • Contaminated raw materials, water or other ingredients
  • Poor manufacturing conditions
  • Ingredients that  encourage growth of microorganisms, without an effective preservative system
  • Packaging that doesn’t protect a product adequately
  • Poor shipping or storage conditions
  • Consumer use, such as the need to dip fingers into the product

Parameters performed –

  1. Total Bacterial count
  2. Staphylococcus aureus
  3. Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  4. Yeast and mould
  5. Escherichia coli