It can be difficult to keep track of what is going on with legislation and regulations on top of the everyday business you already need to look after. More often than not, small biz owners are too busy running their own businesses to know what is happening in Washington D.C. - and who can blame you!?
Get Updates on Cosmetic Regulation Legislation
The Coalition of Handcrafted Entrepreneurs makes it easy to keep tabs on what is going on. Join the COHE (for free) and stay up to date.
They will email you any time there is movement on legislation, which sounds like it would be often, but it doesn’t tend to be at all. Make sure to mark their email address ([email protected]) to your white-list, so updates go straight to your inbox.
Plus, they don’t leave you in the dark to wonder what you can do to help. If needed, COHE will provide an action item with instructions and information about the next steps to make it as easy as possible to advocate for our industry.
Set Up Alerts for Cosmetic Reform
If you want to be notified when there are whispers or rumors of legislation, or talk about reform in the news, you’ll want to set up Google Alerts to keep you updated.
Google Alerts can notify you about news articles that are published online containing any keyword(s) of your choice. For the purpose of cosmetics legislation and reform, you might choose to set up Google Alerts for keywords such as:
- “Cosmetics reform”
- “Cosmetics legislation”
- “Cosmetics regulations”
- “FDA cosmetics”
Until you get your keywords honed in, you might receive alerts that aren’t relevant to you. But it's better to make adjustments for refinement than miss out!
Once you have alerts set up, they can be really helpful to stay informed about what is happening. For instance, I got an alert this morning about the EWG (Environmental Working Group) publishing an article about reform.
As a side note, you should also set up Google Alerts for your company name and your name while you are at it. It can be helpful to catch if you get mentioned anywhere or snag a bit of surprise press.
Track Cosmetic Bills in Congress
Once a piece of legislation is introduced, you can keep tabs on its movement very easily thanks to tons of tracking software that watches over Congress.
GovTrack allows you to track your representatives, specific issues, or even specific pieces of legislation. You can also sign up for alerts.
Congress.gov also allows you to search and track specific pieces of legislation, plus you can read the full text of a bill or skim summaries. We’re huge advocates of actually reading the bills introduced, even if they don’t make much sense to you. In fact, reading bills over and over since 2010 is largely why I can understand the legal speak so well now.
Here are some previous bills that have been introduced in the past:
- Senate bill S.1014 in 114th Congress
- House bill HR.6903 in 115th Congress
- Senate bill S.2003 in 115th Congress
Read them over to get familiar with what kind of reform is being drafted and discussed as well as practicing reading and understanding the legal speak! As these are older bills, there are tons of plain English explanations and summaries available online.
Get Countable & Get Informed
Another awesome way to stay informed is to join Countable, a website that is dedicated to helping you stay informed as a citizen and voter.
Countable shares easy to understand summaries of legislation so you can decipher the legal speak. They also help you contact your representatives. And share a steady (and always up-to-date) newsfeed categorized by topic (for instance, Consumer Safety and Small Business are two categories I check often!)
Be aware that Countable is an editorial website, so they may or may not cover cosmetics legislation if and when it comes up. Though, cosmetics reform always tends to hit the news because of certain consumer “horror stories” like Wen haircare or Brazilian blowouts. So I find it hard to believe that Countable would skip it over!
Do you keep track of regulatory reform, or do you prefer to bury your head in the sand? Remember, knowledge is power. Have a favorite way to stay on top of changes that we didn't mention in this article? Let us know in the comments below.
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