Advertising representation for cosmetics and quasi-drugs

No progress
Fifty-five efficacy claims were defined as permissible for cosmetics in Japan in 2000. In 2011, a further efficacy claim of "making fine wrinkles due to dryness less noticeable" was added to the list. Yet the scope of efficacy claims approved in Japan is still narrower than in Europe, which hinders foreign-made cosmetics based on the latest research and technology from entering the Japanese market. Sector associations are currently studying the efficacy claim of "prevention of ultraviolet ray-derived photo-ageing" which may lead to a further expansion. In recent years, the promotion of self-care and self-medication is required for the realisation of healthy long-lived social. Daily care by cosmetics and quasi-drugs, such as wet care for atopic skin and use of suntan products to prevent skin cancer, plays an important role in maintaining health and improving the quality of life, and contributing to disease prevention and thereby curbing medical costs. Current advertising regulations, however, do not allow the importance of such care to be promoted. In addition, it is stated that "illustration of experience-and-experience discussions on indications" should not be done because it is not an objective support and there is a risk that consumers may be misled about the efficacy, etc. or safety. It is not permitted even if the content is a fact or within the scope of the approved efficacy. This an important factor and often used by the consumer when choosing a particular product. In addition, in the recent pandemic, the opinion of uses with experience has become an increasingly important information for consumers, considering the difficulty of face-to-face sales and trial of actual products at stores and the significant increase in mail order users. If it is possible to post user experience statements in the advertising of cosmetics, it will be possible to respond to the diversification of consumer demand and to communicate a wide range of information to consumers.


  • Limitations on advertising expressions should be eased so that the role of routine care using cosmetics and quasi-drugs, such as health maintenance and disease prevention, can also be promoted.
  • ”Consumers’ experience” should be allowed to be used in advertising if it is the scope recognised by the cosmetics.