The Validated Hypoallergenic Cosmetics Rating System: Its 30-year Evolution and Effect on the Prevalence of Cosmetic Reactions

Its 30-Year Evolution and Effect on the Prevalence of Cosmetic Reactions

Vermén M. Verallo-Rowell


Dermatitis. 2011;22(2):80-97. 

In This Article

VH-rated Hypoallergenic Cosmetics and CCD Prevalence

VMV Hypoallergenics in the Philippines has been following the VH rating system guidelines for 30 years. All of its formulations have high VH ratings (meaning zero to, at most, two VH-listed allergens). The company has a strong postmarketing surveillance network made up of beauty counselors at outlets where products are sold; physicians' liaisons who (like drug representatives) regularly visit dermatologists' offices; a newsletter that informs consumers about CCD; and active Internet contact sites. Packaging complaints and reports of CCD are sent directly by consumers to the company, or cases are seen by a physician or dermatologist and are reported to the company. Individuals with perceived CCD are sent to their own dermatologists or dermatologists at the VMV Skin Research Centre for examination and testing. The company reviewed CCD cases reported for the more than 200 types of products it produced from 2006 to 2009. One number (the numerator) was based on the number of complaints of a perceived allergic reaction that were reported verbally or in writing. The denominator was calculated by dividing the units sold in a year (a known number) by the average number of units purchased per customer and then dividing the quotient by the average number of times a customer purchased a product from the company in a given year. This gave the company an estimate of the total number of customers per year. In 2006, 0.05% of total customers reported reactions. The number was 0.12 % in 2007, 0.06% in 2008, and 0.09% in 2009. The resulting average yearly reported CCD rate among users of cosmetics with high VH ratings in the period is 0.08%.[71]