Halal-compliant personal care products: the safe, guilt-free, and healthy alternative

Posted on 03/01/2022 08:10 am
Halal-compliant personal care products: the safe, guilt-free, and healthy alternative image

For the health and beauty-conscious consumers and entrepreneurs, these halal-compliant personal care products and technology might be a business venture worth looking into.

In response to the increasing demand for products and services catering to Muslim consumers, which are still lacking in the Philippines, the Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI), an agency of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), developed a line of personal care products that are Halal-compliant to serve this sector, as well as those with special preferences in terms of product safety, hygiene, and other ethical concerns.

Product and Technology

Among the DOST-ITDI Halal-compliant personal care products are the lipstick and lip balm, which both contain shea butter and either Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) or avocado oil on top of the other emollients that make them moisturizing; soap made from avocado oil, shea butter, and VCO infused with lemon and cucumber extracts; shampoo infused with lemongrass oil, VCO, peppermint, wheatgerm oil, and rosemary essential oil; and toothpaste containing VCO, papaya extract, and peppermint.

(Photo credit: screen-grabbed from DOST ITDI Updates Facebook Page) Halal-compliant lipstick made from VCO and shea butter, developed by DOST-ITDI as the healthier, safer, and budget-friendly alternative to existing commercial lipsticks.

The DOST-ITDI halal soap is made both for skin lightening and moisturizing. It limits the amount of oils rich in saturated fatty acids that can be drying and irritating to the skin and makes use of the skin nourishing properties found in avocado oil instead because of its high oleic acid content.

Ma. Rachel V. Parcon, Supervising Science Research Specialist of DOST-ITDI, reiterated that consumers nowadays have become more conscious of the commodities they purchase and consume. If for instance, their goal of buying organic products is primarily to secure safety, cleanliness and high-quality consumption, halal products can also get those jobs done, valued at a more affordable price. With halal products, there will also be increased consumer confidence, peace of mind and brand trust.

Halal products are significantly different from organic products however, they might be comparable in some aspects. Organic beauty products are formulated from all organic and natural raw materials which we all know are the main grounds for its high cost. In comparison, Halal cosmetic products can be more affordable for the general public as it doesn’t have to be all organic or natural. Because halal products should never contain or are not made from animals that are forbidden by the Islamic law, it is really common that the raw materials are mostly sourced from plants. Meaning, these may also induce potential health-beneficial effects for its consumers, which adds value to the products.  In addition, synthetic materials are allowed as long as it does not pose harm to the consumers.

“Normally, when we hear the word “halal”, we automatically correlate its importance to food like in food services or food industries. But, I think it is also equally important to consider that the raw materials used in producing cosmetics and personal care are those that tend to be ingested, inhaled and absorbed by the skin. Thus, halal compliance should be given enough attention as well for cosmetics and personal care products,” Parcon said.

A Halal product is non-toxic, non-poisonous, and is free from najis, other sorts of contaminations, impurities and harmful ingredients, making it safe, clean and also of high quality -- starting from the raw materials, production processes, packaging and up to the distribution. Furthermore, these products are ethically made, cruelty free and environmentally friendly, as well.

Halal-compliant personal care technology adoption: process and cost

“The technology is ready for commercialization, and currently, we have ongoing pre-commercialization activities with our current adopter,” Dr. Lorelle Baracol, Supervising Science Research Specialist, Business Development Section of DOST-ITDI, said.

Baracol added that technologies may be availed individually or by package. And that discounts are given if technologies are availed thru package. 

The good news is that ordinary Filipinos who would want to venture into producing safe, good quality, and healthy personal care products can afford these technologies with the following licensing fees: Halal-compliant Lightening and Moisturizing Soap – Php 119,680.00; Halal-compliant Hair growth promoting Shampoo – Php 111,126.00; and Halal-compliant moisturizing lipstick – Php 135,985.00.

Other than the licensing fees, there is also an approximate investment cost for each technology which varies if the possible adopter has existing resources available to operate the production of the technologies: Halal-compliant Lightening and Moisturizing Soap – Php 1,700,000.00; Halal-compliant Hair growth promoting Shampoo – Php 682,000.00; and Halal-compliant moisturizing lipstick – Php 1,500,000.00. The investment costs are composed of equipment, manpower, raw materials, labor, utilities and pre-operation expenses.

Although being in the business is an advantage, a Filipino who is not yet in the business can also adopt or license said technologies as long as they comply with the necessary permits and legal requirements. DOST- ITDI accepts applicants who are new entrants, but are interested in the technology for business. 

Entrepreneurs can adopt the technology through the DOST-ITDI Technological Services Division’s technology transfer process, which consists of consultative meetings among the aspiring technology adopter, the TSD, and the involved research team to create a Memorandum of Agreement for the technology adoption. 

As cited in the 2021 Halal National Conference by the Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez - out of the USD 2.6 trillion global Halal market, 62 percent is accounted for by food and beverages, followed by pharmaceuticals at 22 percent, cosmetics and personal care at 10 percent, and nutraceuticals at 6 percent.

“The Asia-Pacific region dominates the halal market, representing roughly three-fourths of the market’s overall revenue in 2015. With these figures, one can say that there is an income opportunity for Filipinos in this type of industry,” Dr. Baracol noted.

For more information, interested entrepreneurs may send their inquiries in this email: tsd@itdi.dost.gov.ph. (Geraldine Bulaon-Ducusin, DOST-STII)