Updating our flagship safe use program

In 2020, IFRA launched an update to the Standards. Our aim was to integrate new data, new methods and new product types into the system, ensuring that you can continue to enjoy fragrance with confidence.

Known as the ‘49th Amendment’, these changes are the biggest to the Standards in many years.

Based on ongoing assessments of the wide range of ingredients used in our industry, we have added 25 new Standards, increasing the number of ingredients covered by the Standards to 214. There are also changes to around one hundred existing Standards, based on new data.

We have also updated the way in which we calculate the Standards. For skin sensitization, we are using a new assessment methodology called ‘QRA2’, which was created over many years by a multi-stakeholder group of experts involving dermatologists, academics, the industry and other stakeholders.

For a series of health effects, the new Standards look at ‘aggregate exposure’ – the way in which a range of different products are used together. We have used a consumer database to understand how people really use fragrance products in everyday life, and to set rules to make sure they can continue to use them safely.

The new Standards also increase the number of product categories from 11 to 12, and include new sub-categories. Some ingredients are used in different products and different ways – in shampoos or in creams, in products that are washed off or in those left on the skin. These categories allow us to set more precise and targeted restrictions on the use of some ingredients in certain products.

Following a decision of the IFRA Board on 30 March 2020, the original deadlines for implementation of the new Standards have been delayed by three months. See details in IFRA Information Letter 1089.

In June 2021, a further update was made to the Standards, adding a new Standard on Mintlactone. This update - the 50th Amendment - is known as an 'off-cycle' amendment. The next multi-ingredient update to the Standards is planned for 2022.