To bring safe baby cosmetics on the market, risk assessment is a key priority and often includes a broadly recognized iterative four-step quantitative exposure-based risk assessment process (US National Academy of Sciences, WHO and the European Union’s Society Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety and Bureau of Indian Standards IS 4011:2018.
The potential impact of skin irritation on dermal absorption should be taken into consideration during baby cosmetic product development.
A distinction should be made between intact, healthy skin and the potentially damaged skin of the nappy zone for which risk factors exist, which are not present for the rest of the body.
The increased prevalence of allergic contact dermatitis in children has prompted scrutiny of products marketed for neonates and children for the presence of sanitisers.
During the development of baby products, a number of criteria should be taken into consideration:
Dermal absorption data is compound-dependent, varying molecular weight, hydrophobicity
| hydrophilicity, structure, etc., and frequently determined using adult skin.
Another pharmacokinetic difference is a decreased protein binding capacity which can be linked to lower concentrations of glycoproteins in the plasma of infants.
Full-term neonates, tend to show a three to nine times longer pharmacokinetic half-life than adults.
Importantly, the SC’s barrier is functional at birth and matures for many key skin characteristics (skin pH) in the first few months after birth.
Susanna Brink, M. O. (2023). Baby Care Products. In E. J. Frank Dreher, Handbook of Cosmetic Science and Technology (pp. 339-340). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.