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How to Import Cosmetics in India? 1

How to Import Cosmetics in India?

April 16, 2020

Today in this blog, we will explain to you how to import cosmetics to India?

Every Woman loves cosmetics and beauty products to enhance their beauty. Each woman has a different taste, skin, and choice. There are various types of products in the market, but it is not possible for each country to provide multiple units as per their choices and preferences. China is the world’s second-largest cosmetics consumer market only behind the United States, importing cosmetics, personal care, and beauty products from China can be hugely profitable for business due to its favourable quality at affordable prices, and safely shipping that they provide to its customers.

For Importing goods to India firstly find out the supplier through online services or direct factory visits, negotiate the price and then place the order, but before placing the order you should have Drug License Certificate for your Cosmetic Products. So, before placing the order let you know some rules and regulations of import cosmetics from China to India.

 Rules and Regulations of Import cosmetics: There are few rules and regulations while importing cosmetics from China to India. They are

    • Cosmetic License Registration
    • Labelling of Cosmetics
    • Documents for the grant of Cosmetic License
    • Lab testing requirements


Let we discuss these rules and regulations in detail to know brief information before importing your cosmetics products,

    • Cosmetic Licence Registration Procedure in India

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India has regulated that for importing cosmetics in India, a compulsory registration certificate is required as defined under Rule 21 of Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1945.

The cosmetics products that are intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled or sprayed on or applied to the human body for cleaning, beautifying, alerting the appearance, and promoting attractiveness those products are imported for sale in India should be certified by Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) which has been appointed as the licensing authority that these products are safe for consumers.

 Here we will explain the procedure for the registration certificate 

    1. Authorized Person: For applying a Cosmetic License certificate will take 20-35 days to be filed.
      Now, who can apply for Cosmetic License Registration?
      Here Three persons can apply for registration Certificate They are

      1. The manufacturer
      2. An Import Agent &
      3. The Buyer
    2. Application Form and submission: First, fill the cosmetic license application form, provide details about your business and submit to the office of the Drugs Controller General of India Under the Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
    3. Registration Fee: The Registration Fee will be USD 250 or its equivalent as per imported products.
    4. Payment Process: Payment should make through electronic transfer from any bank in the country of origin to the Bank of Baroda branch in Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi.
      Note: Proof of such payment would need to be submitted along with the application for registration.
    5. Timeline for processing of Application: Within six months from the date of submission of the application form along with all documents of your business.
    6. Validity of the Registration Certificate: The Registration Certificate is valid for a period of three years from the date of its issue


  • Labelling of Cosmetics

The following are the Regulation for labelling of Cosmetic Products Under the Rule 21 Drugs and cosmetics Act, 1945.

    1. Specify the name of the product along with the manufacturing address on both the inner and the outer labels. In case the container is small in size then the principal place of manufacturing and the pin code are sufficient.
    2. The ingredients should be clearly displayed on the outer label of the products.
    3. The inner label of the product should contain the ‘directions for use’ along with any warning or caution is necessary for particular product.
    4. A Separate batch number preceded by letter ‘B’ along with manufacturing batch number preceded by letter ‘M’ must be specified on the label.
  • Documents for the grant of Cosmetic License 
    1. Cover letter by the applicant
    2. Form 42 for importers/Form 32 for manufacturers (this form shows the location of the manufacturing sites of the products, brand names, pack sizes and different manufacturing units)
    3. A valid Import Export Code (IEC)
    4. Proof of payment of the required registration fee.
    5. Original copy of Power of Attorney in case of Importer
    6. Schedule D III (details of the cosmetic products to be imported including the chemical and safety data)
    7. Original or a copy of the Label
    8. Free Sale Certificate (FSC)/Marketing Authorisation Letter
    9. Product Specification and testing method of the product.
    10. List of countries where import permission or registration of the cosmetic product has been granted
    11. Package inserts, if any (copies is to provide information about the potential side effects/allergic reactions and other safety concerns and remedies available)
    12. Provide Soft copies of information about brands, products and manufacturer.


  • Lab Testing Requirements

  Safety regulation applies for cosmetic Product by testing the products.

How to make sure that the product is safe for us?

The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) checks the quality of the product for time to time and also revised the Indian standard. So, the products must be confirmed to the Indian standards.

 Here below we mentioned a few common tests to ensure that cosmetic product is safe for consumer use. They are

    • Microbiology testing allows different methods to identify the presence of bacteria and to ensure that is free from harmful micro-organisms growth.
    • Performance Testing checks the functions and durability of the product
    • Chemical Stability testing studies for shelf life estimation and storage conditions of the product.
    • Toxicology Testing checks the raw materials and finished products to determine if any substances of the product present a risk for consumers like skin irritation, eye corrosion etc.
    • Safety testing like heavy metals in cosmetics banned colours and banned chemicals

More other tests also can be made in order to ensure product safety to consumers. All these tests records must be gathered and stored carefully because these quality documents will help you at the time of inspection. Laboratories are able to enter information directly on the platform allowing you to save time and ensure data accuracy.

  • Custom Clearance Procedure

After doing all tests for cosmetic products and approved that for safe to consumers, import documentation and custom clearance process must complete by your import agent or customs broker as per foreign trade policy. For custom clearance the import entry documents required along with carrier’s document like

    • Bill of Lading /Airway bill,
    • Commercial invoice,
    • Packing list,
    • Certificate of origin and
    • other required documents are filed.

Complete all custom formalities and take delivery of your consignment (  can help you in clearing the customs and deliver your goods to your destination)

Nowadays, necessary information is filed online and produces required documents at the time of inspection or delivery of goods at destination customs location.


Is any Penalty imposed for not complying with this Act (Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1945)?

Absolutely Yes, if any of the rules under this Act with respect to Cosmetics are not complied with, imprisonment will be up to 1 year or penalty up to Rs. 1000 or both can be imposed on first conviction and on subsequent convictions, imprisonment can be extended to 2 years and penalty will be up to Rs. 2000.

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