Glossary Terms – C



A soft tissue that forms over a cut or an injury to a plant surface, or a localized thickening of the skin.


The outside whorl (circle) of floral leaves that ordinarily enclose and support the bud, and that are usually green.


A substance that facilitates a chemical reaction, but which itself is not chemically changed by the reaction.


The basic structural and functional unit of all organisms; cells may exist as independent units of life or may form colonies or tissues as in higher plants and animals.


Naturally occurring skin lipids or their synthetic counterparts that are major structural components of the skin’s outer structure; ceramides are vital to the skin’s retention of water.

Chelating Agent

Ingredients that inactivate metallic ions so as to prevent the deterioration of cosmetic products.


Ingredients that impart color to cosmetic products. In the United States, the FDA regulates which colorants may be used in cosmetics.


Refers to the chance that an ingredient or product will cause pores in the skin to clog. This may result in blackheads or whiteheads, officially called comedones.

Corn/Callus/Wart Remover

Ingredients that are applied to the skin to remove corns, calluses, and warts. In the United States, corn/callus/wart removers are regulated as Over-The-Counter (OTC) drug ingredients.

Corrosion Inhibitor

Ingredients that prevent the corrosion (rust) of metallic materials used in cosmetic packaging.

Cosmetic Astringent

Ingredients that induce a tightening or tingling sensation of the skin.

Cosmetic Biocide

Ingredients that help to cleanse the skin or to prevent odor by destroying or inhibiting the growth of microorganisms.

Cosmetic Ingredient Review

The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) was established in 1976 as an independent safety review program for cosmetic ingredients. The CIR Expert Panel consists of independent experts in dermatology, toxicology, pharmacolgy and veterinary medicine. The CIR includes participation by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and the Consumer Federation of America.


An atom or group connecting parallel chains in a complex molecule.


A cells grown in a prepared nutrient medium.