Consumers and manufacturers sometimes have questions about the term "cosmeceutical."
While the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) does not recognize the term "cosmeceutical," the cosmetic industry uses this word to refer to cosmetic products that have medicinal or drug-like benefits.
The FD&C Act defines drugs as those products that cure, treat, mitigate or prevent disease or that affect the structure or function of the human body. While drugs are subject to a review and approval process by FDA, cosmetics are not approved by FDA prior to sale. If a product has drug properties, it must be approved as a drug.
- Cosmetic Labeling and Label Claims: An introduction to cosmetic labeling requirements
- Cosmetics Q&A: Personal Care Products: A quick look at how different "personal care products" are labeled
- Is It a Cosmetic, a Drug, or Both? (or Is It Soap?): Information on the legal differences between cosmetics, drugs, and soap
- Warning Letters Address Drug Claims Made for Products Marketed as Cosmetics: Warning Letters issued by FDA citing unapproved drug claims
February 24, 2000. This document is current and is updated only when necessary.