Color Control in the Cosmetics Industry

Cosmetic is the use of chemical substances which can be naturally derived from various sources to enhance the appearance of the human body particularly the facial area.

Cosmetic or commonly known as makeup is the use of chemical substances or compounds which can be naturally derived from various sources to enhance the appearance of the human body particularly the facial area. Many cosmetic products come in various color and shades to help the users beautify their skin color or improved its appearance and condition. It is always a challenge for the cosmetic manufacturers to ensure the color quality of their products to provide better confidence for the consumers in using their products.

Color evaluation for cosmetics products generally are tested in appearance and also in application. This simply means that the cosmetic product not only has to appear good in color on the shelves but also has to look good in color when it is being applied by the user. There is also a color relation study between the appearance color and the application color.
With today’s technology, color evaluation can be carried out rather quickly and effortlessly using color instruments like the Konica Minolta Spectrophotometer CM-5.

Appearance Color 
When testing the appearance color, standard test procedure has to be looked into to ensure that the measured color represents the product color well enough. This can be accomplished by standardizing the sample preparation process and presentation of the cosmetic product prior to the measurements by the Spectrophotometer CM-5. The user has to take into consideration the different packaging types like bottles, casing, tubes etc and the different packaging materials used like plastic, glass etc.

Application Color
For the testing of application color, care has to be taken to ensure that the products are applied over a standard substrate to ensure good repeatability for the test. This means that the opacity and absorption of the product has to be looked into as well. With proper and correct level of opacity and absorption, then only can the measured data be representative and can be used effectively for the study and evaluation of the product color for quality control.

Color Measurement
The Konica Minolta Spectrophotometer CM-5 offers versatile options for the user to manage their color measurements and evaluation efficiently. This is achieved using the various accessories available for the Spectrophotometer CM-5 which allows the measurement of solid, paste, powder, granular and many other sample types. Accessories like petri dish, tube cells, target mask, cuvettes are commonly used during such measurements to handle the different types of cosmetic products.

For example, the measurement of powder, paste or opaque liquid samples like face powder, foundation, mascara and eye shadow can be measured using the different sizes of petri dishes to obtain repeatable and quantifiable data for precise analysis. Solid opaque samples like lipsticks can also be measured with ease using the appropriate measuring area mask to make the measurements quick and easy for the chemist to effectively differentiate any color issues. Liquid transparent samples can also be quantified easily with the Spectrophotometer CM-5 transmittance chamber which allows measurement of products like perfumes. To further enhance the operation experience while using the Spectrophotometer CM-5, the user can perform the measurement through the optional color management software, SpectraMagic NX. In general, cosmetic products can be easily quantified and analyse using the Konica Minolta Spectrophotometer CM-5 which offers versatility to help the chemist or color specialist to perform their task in color control much faster and with ease.

For more information, please click Spectrophotometer CM-5 and SpectraMagic NX Pro Software. Feel free to contact us at +65 6895 8685 or drop us an email at to find out more from our color team on the product capabilities or to have a no-obligation discussion with our application advisors to help you select the appropriate models for your specific application.

About the Author: Alan Chua

Alan Chua is the Assistant Manager of Konica Minolta Sensing Singapore Pte Ltd. Graduated from an electrical engineering background, he is mainly involved in sales, seminar, training and coaching in the field of light and color management. In his 18 years of experience in managing and providing solutions to the many industrial applications, he has also conducted color seminars and workshops to educate the industry on instrumentation technologies and color science. He was also invited as speaker for The Academy of Fashion Professions ( seminar which is the training arm of Textile & Fashion Federation (TaF.f). He was also the speaker for the Color Cosmetics Conference.