Statements on anti-bacterial skin products

Here is a list of statements and phrases that are permitted and not permitted on a cosmetic anti-bacterial skin product.

These products are subject to the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 regarding performance and/or failure. The Competition and Consumer Act 2010 is administered by the ACCC.

They must also comply with all of the NICNAS cosmetic requirements. In particular, the context in which the product is marketed will also contribute to determining whether a product is considered a cosmetic.

Statements and phrases permitted and not permitted on a cosmetic anti-bacterial skin product


Not permitted

  • antibacterial
  • kills bacteria
  • kills germs
  • kills X% of bacteria/germs
  • hygienic
  • for household use (including kitchen, bathroom, laundry, outdoors)
  • for use before handling food.
  • that the product can be used before physical contact with any person receiving medical or health care
  • any statement regarding viruses, fungi, mould, yeast or any microbial organism other than bacteria
  • any reference to:
    • a specific disease-causing bacterium such as Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella spp. etc.
    • a specific disease
    • use of the product in medical or health care facilities that are not sufficiently qualified to limit the intended use
    • clinical and/or surgical use
  • that the product can be used in connection with:
    • piercing the skin or mucous membrane, for any purpose
    • any procedure associated with the risk of transmission of disease from contact with blood or other bodily fluids
    • any procedure involving venipuncture or delivery of an injection
  • bacteria that can/may
    • cause disease or illness
    • make you ill/sick
  • "harmful" bacteria
  • prevents illness/disease/infection
  • antiseptic
  • medicated

Last update 29 July 2018