CDSCO License


How to Import Cosmetics from Korea?

calendar17 Aug, 2022
timeReading Time: 4 Minutes
Import Cosmetics from Korea

There has been a huge expansion of the cosmetic market in India, with a huge range of Korean beauty and cosmetic products. India has been a great attraction for businesses trying to expand their market, especially after the introduction of the online marketing system. The online selling culture has increased the scope of online marketing of cosmetic products in India, as it provides a variety of products from around the world at the convenience of the doorsteps of the customers. Korean products have always been a huge craze in the Indian cosmetic market because of the uniqueness they provide. As cosmetic product marketing contributes to a big part of the Indian market, Cosmetic products need to be duly regulated in India. All the cosmetic products that are Imported into India need to be registered with the Licensing authority as per rule 21 of the Drugs and Cosmetic rules, 1945[1]. In this write-up, we will discuss how to import Cosmetics from Korea.

Bodies governing Import of Cosmetics from Korea to India

Cosmetics are governed by the Drug and Cosmetic Act, of 1940 and The Drug and Cosmetic Rule, 1945 and by the labelling Declarations by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS). BIS sets the standards for cosmetics products, which are listed in Schedule ‘S’ of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules 1945.

According to the Drugs and Cosmetics act, the term “cosmetic” is defined in section 3(aaa) of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act of 1940. It states that “cosmetic” includes any item intended to be used as a cosmetic ingredient as well as any object meant to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, sprayed, applied to the human body or any part for cleansing, beautifying, promoting beauty, or altering the appearance.

To be imported into India, the cosmetic products need to be first registered with the Central Drug Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) by filling out COS-1, which is the application form and by receiving a Registration Certificate through COS-2.

Eligibility Criteria to Import Cosmetics From Korea to India

The following is the eligibility criteria for importing the Cosmetic products to India-

  • The company that manufactures the product is eligible to Import Cosmetic Products in India;
  • A person who is appointed by the company to sell the imported products in the country;
  • Any other Importer or Subsidiary agent that the company has appointed can be allowed to Import Cosmetic products in India.

Necessary documents required to Import Cosmetics from Korea

Following are some vital documents required to Import Cosmetics from Korea:

  • Basic documents like- ID proof, Residential Address, the Contact information of the manufacturer, along with the Address of the production office
  • IEC Code or The Import Export Code
  • AD code registration
  • Registration fee payment receipt
  • Company logo design
  • The manufacturing date of the Cosmetic product
  • Physical description of the cosmetic product
  • Production license, registration license, and Marketing authorization issued by regulatory authorities of Korea
  • List of countries where the Import is allowed
  • Terminology of the ingredient and proportion of the cosmetic product.
  • Product specification and the details of the evaluation
  • A sample of the label
  • Date and location where the product is being marketed in India
  • During the time of cargo clearance at the port office, there should be an Undertaking stating that the product has not been tested on animals on or after December 11, 2014

Procedure to Import Cosmetics from Korea

CDSCO which is governed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India, is the body that registers all Cosmetic Imports in India. So, to Import a cosmetic, the Importer needs to register for the Import license by applying for CDSCO Registration. Rule 21 of the Drugs & Cosmetics Rules, 1945 directs that all the cosmetic products that are imported into India should be registered with the Licensing authority.

  • Registration application form (COS-1) along with required documents are submitted to Drugs Controller General.
  • The application needs to be submitted along with the fees and relevant information and undertaking provided in schedule D-III.
  • There is a Single application submitted through the application form for any brand manufactured by a single manufacturer at one or more than one location.
  • There is a Single registration certificate obtained through COS-2 by a particular applicant for the Import of any brand manufactured by a single manufacturer at one or more than one location.

Restrictions on Import Cosmetics from Korea

Chapter III of the Drug and Cosmetic Act, 1940 deals with the Import of Drug and Cosmetics. There is a restriction on the Import of certain cosmetics as per sections 134A, 135, and 135A of Drugs and Cosmetic rules, 1945. Following are the criteria for the products restricted from being imported to India-

  • Any product of Non- standard quality
  • Any misbranded or spurious product
  • Any product containing harmful ingredient
  • Any prohibited product as per Drugs and Cosmetic rule, 1945
  • Any cosmetic that contains hexachlorophene
  • Any cosmetic containing lead and arsenic compounds for colouring purposes
  • Any cosmetic containing mercury compound

Offences and Penalties in case of restricted Import Cosmetics from Korea

Import of spurious cosmetic products or any product restricted to be imported to India is an offence and results in penalties as per sections 134A, 135, 135A of Drugs and Cosmetic rules, 1945.

The punishment includes imprisonment for the term of 3 years, which may be extended till 5 years, or a fine of Rs 5000/- or both.

Any case of Import Cosmetics from Korea, which is prohibited under section 10-A, may result in  Imprisonment for the term of 3 years, which may be extended to 5 years, or a fine of 5000/- or both.

If the offences are repeated, then there will be a punishment of imprisonment for the term of 5 years or a fine of 10,000/- or both.


There is a need for regulation for Import Cosmetics from Korea to ensure the quality and safety of cosmetics that are being imported from Korea to India and maintaining the safety of consumers with the cosmetic products. All the imported cosmetic products which come under the definition of “Cosmetics” according to the Drugs and Cosmetic Act 1940, are required to be regulated in India. For the purpose of Import Cosmetics from Korea, the product needs to be registered with CDSCO, through application COS-1 and by receiving a Registration Certificate through COS-2.

Read our Article:How to Import Cosmetics From China?

Snehita Shukla

Snehita has her qualifications in B.Com LLB and LLM, and holds a specialization in Corporate & Financial Laws and Policy. She is hardworking, dedicated and sincere. She has a great command in english and has great problem solving, critical thinking and writing skills which makes her stand out of the crowd. She has a keen interest in legal research work and content writing, she also has a hold in legal research methodology. She loves to take challenges and to explore new topics to research on. She aims to improve her knowledge and skills through her experience.

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