The test challenge on a product consists in determining if it is able to develop bacteria and in how long. To do this, certain microorganisms are deliberately added to the product in question to assess its reaction. Find out in this article how the test challenge for cosmetic products is carried out.
What are the different types of challenge test on cosmetics?
The challenge test is an operation carried out on food and cosmetic products with the aim of determining their shelf life. Laboratories that are able to perform a challenge test on a cosmetic product offer different methods of expertise. They are used in addition or individually, it all depends on the results you are looking for.
In order to study the evolution of the population of micro-organisms, the process test challenge will be very useful to you. To do this, this population will be added to the cosmetic product to be tested before the launch of the process. This is a method of applying a sanitizing treatment to the product in question. Therefore, we will evaluate the results before and after this treatment, in order to see what has changed.
Each case must be treated individually, depending on the client's requirements and the results you want to achieve. It is with this in mind that people trained in the handling of chemical products and formulas are responsible for carrying out the experiment. At the end of the operation, a product test challenge must be carried out to analyze the finished product and draw conclusions. The purpose of this type of challenge test is to assess the evolution of the microorganisms that have been added to the cosmetic product.
This determines how long the product can be stored. It is a simple way to find the expiry date that will be applied to this cosmetic product. It is by analyzing the growth of the population of microorganisms that the specialists in charge of this mission will be able to determine a deadline. The analysis time for these products in the process or product test challenge depends on the expectations of the cosmetic laboratory in charge.
How is a challenge test carried out in the laboratory?
First of all, it is important to have a good knowledge of the process and the composition of the product you wish to analyze. The challenge test thus occurs in several stages, the first of which consists in describing the test. To do this, the experts focus on the experience, safety and reproducibility of the product.
Indeed, the formulas of cosmetic products are very complex, hence the importance of entrusting these tests to experts. The choice of inoculum is paramount and you will need to determine the best way to store the strains, as well as how to prepare it. This avoids any unpleasant surprises at the end or during the challenge test. After having properly prepared the products, it is time to carry out the test in question.
Indeed, in a laboratory, it is important to have all the products to be tested at hand to avoid errors. Some errors can be very serious when mixing incompatible products. The time, the incubation period, the frequency and the size of the sample are very important elements in this third step. The procedure to be followed is thus determined by the persons responsible for carrying out this analysis. It is only after completing the test that the results are interpreted.
Based on this interpretation, the experts determine whether the test should be repeated or whether the results are conclusive. With the demand shown by consumers, laboratories are now called upon to use predictive microbiology. This ensures better product safety for consumers and increases trust with manufacturers. It is indeed a question of improving the formulation of the product and the manufacturing process.
The challenge test consists of determining the shelf life of a cosmetic product through a process test and a product test. In the cosmetics sector, consumer demand is increasingly felt. It is therefore important to be sure of the quality of your product before putting it on the market. To do this, the cosmetic laboratories that are in charge of this analysis implement many important processes for this study.