According to Canadian Cosmetic Regulations, all cosmetic products that are sold in Canada, must be notified to Health Canada. Canada defines a cosmetic as ‘’any substance or mixture of substances manufactured, sold or represented for use in cleansing, improving or altering the complexion, skin, hair or teeth, and includes deodorants and perfumes.” In cases where classification of products is not clear Health Canada classifies such products on a case by case basis, considering product representation, composition and level of action.
Cosmetic products have to be notified within 10 days after the they are first placed on the Canadian market. Failure to do so may result in a product being denied entry into the country or removed from sale.
The notification is made by filling in the Cosmetic Notification Form (CNF) online. This can be done by the manufacturer, Canadian importer or a notifier who acts on behalf of a manufacturer or Canadian importer. It is important to update the cosmetic notification form whenever the information, such as product formulation, product name, contact details of the notifier etc., that was provided on the CNF, changes.
Cosmetic product notification does not mean that the product is approved by Health Canada and that it complies with all legal requirements. Manufacturer is responsible for product safety and has to ensure that the product complies with the relevant regulation. However, in case there are any concerns with the submitted CNF, Health Canada will inform the notifier. Failure to respond may lead to a compliance action.
Information that has to be provided to Health Canada through Cosmetic product notification form includes product identity, product function, product formulation, product ingredients and their concentration, the name and contact details of the manufacturer/importer/distributor, date of first sale in Canada and, if needed, any additional documents and pictures.