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China Mainland Cosmetic Regulation

China's current cosmetic regulatory system is founded on the overarching "Regulations Concerning the Hygiene Supervision over Cosmetics (1989)", supported by a series of subsidiary rules, standards and guidance documents issued by the former regulator, the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the current competent authority, National Medical Products Administration (NMPA).   

Before being used, marketed or imported into China, cosmetic products must get approval from NMPA or provincial Medical Products Administration according to the product category. Cosmetic products in China are divided into two categories.

Non-special Use Cosmetics



  • Skin care products;
  • Hair care products;
  • Nail (toe) care products;
  • Make-up;
  • Fragrance.

Special Use Cosmetics


  1. Hair growth products
  2. Hair dyes
  3. Hair perming products
  4. Depilating products
  5. Breast beauty products
  6. Slimming products
  7. Deodorants
  8. Freckle-removing products (Whitening products)
  9. Sunscreens

At present, imported and domestic special use cosmetics and new ingredients require pre-market registration with NMPA; domestic non-special use cosmetics are subject to pre-market filing with the provincial Medical Products Administration; and situation is divided for imported non-special cosmetics that through the specific 11 FTZs, imported non-SUC cosmetics are subject to filing management with provincial Medical Products Administration, while through other ports, imported non-SUC require filing management with NMPA.





Imported non-SUC

Pre-market filing

Filing certificate


Provincial Medical Products Administration in the 11 FTZs

Imported SUC

Pre-market administrative licensing

Administrative license


Domestic non-SUC

Pre-market filing

no certificate

Provincial Medical Products Administration

Domestic SUC

Pre-market administrative licensing

Administrative license


New ingredient

Pre-market administrative licensing

NMPA's approval announcement


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