Black 2

What Is It?

Black 2 is a colorant consisting of carbon particles. In cosmetics and personal care products, Black 2 may be used in the formulation of eye makeup, makeup and nail products. Black 2 is subject to certification by the Food and Drug Administration.

Why Is It Used?

Black 2 imparts a color to cosmetics and personal care products.

Scientific Facts

Black 2 consists essentially of fine particles of pure carbon. Black 2 or D&C Black No. 2 is the name of the color when it has been certified by FDA. When this color is not certified it is called carbon black or CI 77266. Color additives are classified as straight colors, lakes, and mixtures. Straight colors are color additives that have not been mixed or chemically reacted with any other substance. Black 2 is a straight color.

Safety Information

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reviewed the safety of Black 2 and determined that it may be safely used for coloring eyeliner, brush-on-brow, eye shadow, mascara, lipstick, blushers and rouge, makeup and foundation, and nail enamel, when it conforms to FDA specifications. Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) has deferred evaluation of this ingredient because the safety has been assessed by FDA. This deferral of review is according to the provisions of the CIR Procedures.

All color additives used in foods, drugs and cosmetics in the United States must be approved by FDA and listed in the Code of Federal Regulations. In some cases, FDA requires that each batch of color produced for use in regulated products can be used only if it is certified by the agency to meet strict specifications. FDA maintains a laboratory especially for this purpose and color manufacturers must pay a fee to support this activity. FDA only approves colors after extensive review of all safety data and publication of the basis for its approval in the Federal Register.

You can find out more about FDA regulation of colors at:

Link to FDA Code of Federal Regulations for Black 2…

In the European Union, carbon black (CI 77266) is permitted as a colorant for all types of cosmetic products (see Annex IV). When used in cosmetics and personal care products in the European Union, carbon black must be called CI 77266.

Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation:…

You can learn more about the regulation and labeling of colors at:…

More Scientific Information

Black 2 consists of high purity carbon prepared from aromatic petroleum oil feedstock combusted in a natural gas fired furnace. In cosmetics and personal care products, Black 2 functions as a colorant.


The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) monograph on carbon black

Search the Code of Federal Regulations

EU Cosmetics Inventory