The COSMOS Standard
The COSMOS-standard is a new cosmetic certification developed to harmonize various certifications and labels in order to create one standard that is internationally recognized for natural and organic cosmetics. The “COSMetic Organic Standard” was officially launched in February 2017, and is a result of Europe’s leading natural cosmetic certifiers coming together and forming a non-profit association, COSMOS-standard AISBL. The COSMOS-standard association consists of five founding members who now authorise and oversee the certification, including the Soil Association (UK), Ecocert (France), Cosmebio (France), BDIH (Germany) and AIAB/ICEA (Italy). The main goal is to uphold the inspection and certification of organic and ecological products, eco-friendly systems and respect for the environment throughout the production chain. Today over 1,600 companies, and more than 25,000 products sold into more than 45 countries are certified under COSMOS
Within this standard are the core principles of prevention and safety, reflective from the production of raw materials to the distribution of finished products which includes:
- promoting the use of products from organic agriculture, and respecting biodiversity
- using natural resources responsibly and respecting the environment
- using processing and manufacturing that are clean and respectful of human health and environment
- integrating and developing the concept of "Green Chemistry" instead of using petrochemicals
- providing transparency for consumers
The COSMOS-standard surrounding the origin and processing of cosmetic ingredients are classified into five categories:
- Physically processed agro-ingredients – organic agriculture that reflects pure or allows simple processing;
- Chemically processed agro-ingredients – certifiable by using agricultural organic raw materials and manufacturing processes that are clean and authorised, all under the umbrella of “Green Chemistry”;
- Water – non-certifiable and must comply with hygienic standards;
- Minerals and ingredients of mineral origin – non-certifiable, requires clear environmental rules in their use, and in further processing;
- Other ingredients – a very limited list of preservatives and some ingredients allowed as long as there are no effective natural alternatives available to ensure the safety of consumers or efficacy of the product.
COSMOS-standard certified products are labeled with the signature “COSMOS ORGANIC” or “COSMOS NATURAL”, depending on their certification level.
To achieve COSMOS ORGANIC certification, 95 percent of a product’s agro-ingredients themselves must be organic. The finished product must have a minimum of 20 percent organic ingredients, which is comprised of physically and chemically processed organic ingredients but does not include water and/or minerals. The remaining 80 percent of finished product may be from natural origins, which are not used to calculate the organic percentage. For wash-off products which have a higher content of water, the finished product must meet a minimum of 10 percent organic.
To achieve COSMOS NATURAL certification, the ingredients must be considered organic, natural or of natural origin and the entire finished product must be deemed natural.
In 2017, KORA Organics products are produced and manufactured in accordance with COSMOS strict standards and have been previously certified by ECOCERT under the COSMOS standard.
Founded in France 1991, ECOCERT specialized in the certification of organic agricultural products and was the very first certification body to develop standards for "natural and organic cosmetics. ECOCERT had become a benchmark in organic certification worldwide, winning the confidence of consumers and professionals.
The ECOCERT standard was set to inspect the ingredients, manufacturing process and packaging to ensure that everything from the where the plant is grown to the packaging you see on your shelf is compliant. ECOCERT will only approve the use of “green chemicals” and accredit products that meet its strict criteria. To ensure an environmentally friendly product, ECOCERT strives to promote the use of ingredients derived from renewable resources and production and manufacturing processes that are environmentally safe. Outside of cosmetic products and respected ingredients, ECOCERT also holds certification and control of eco-products related to home fragrance, textiles, spas, and detergents. It is accredited in accordance with the ISO 17065 standard, and their certification standards now fall under the broader COSMOS-standard noted above and set forth in early 2017.
All of our product packages and product pages online detail the full list of ingredients as well as the breakdown % totals for natural origin and organic farming.