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ISO 16212 Test

Enumeration of Yeast and Mould present in Cosmetics

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ISO 16212 : 2017 – Enumeration of yeast and mold in cosmetic samples

ISO 16212 standard test method lays down the guideline for the enumeration of yeast and molds on selective agar medium after aerobic incubation. However, before starting the microbiological analysis, it is important to ensure that each product sample is neutralized and checked for its antifungal activity. The antifungal/fungicidal activity of product samples can significantly impact the results of microbial risk assessment.

Test Process of ISO 16212

ISO 16212 Test Method

Plate count method

  • Initial suspension of the test product is prepared by diluting 1 g or 1 ml test product into an enrichment broth.
  • Initial suspension or dilution of the test product is inoculated on a specified agar medium.
  • Inoculated petri plates are subjected to aerobic incubation at 25 °C ± 2.5 °C for 3-5 days.
  • After incubation,  colony-forming units (CFU) are used as a measure to determine the number of  yeast and mold in the product sample.

Membrane filtration

  • This method involves a suitable amount of product sample to be passed through a membrane filter using a filtration apparatus.  
  • After filtration, the membrane filter is transferred onto the surface of specified agar medium and incubated at 25 °C ± 2.5 °C for 3 – 5 days.

Importance of ISO 16212 Test

High levels of contamination of yeast and mold in cosmetic samples is concerning as it can lead to skin irritations and other serious health issues. Hence, assessing microbiological quality of cosmetic products is a pivotal practice to prevent microbial contamination and ensure safe product development for end users.

To address this concern, ISO 16212 standard outlines a quantitative test method to determine the presence of any yeast or mold contamination within the given cosmetic product. ISO 16212 testing helps to ensure that tested cosmetic samples meet the highest standards of safety.

At MIS, we offer cosmetic testing services as per various industry standards such as USP, ISO, and PCPC (formerly CTFA) Test Methods.

Our microbiology testing services for cosmetic products include preservative efficacy testing, and enumeration tests for semi finished and finished formulations.

Our state-of-the-art microbiological testing facilities are equipped with cutting-edge technology. Our team consists of industry experts who have hands-on experiences in setting up and running testing protocols.

If you need any assistance with ISO 16212 test i.e. pricing, turnaround time, and expert consultation, contact us here.


ISO 16212 is a standardized procedure used for the detection of yeast and mold in cosmetic products. The objective of ISO 16212 test is to ensure the microbiological risk assessment of cosmetic products to ensure public safety.

ISO 16212 is applicable to cream, emulsions, and other similar products.

ISO 16212 test takes 4-5 weeks to complete.

At Microbe Investigations, we test for ISO 16212 using the following microbial strains: Candida Albicans (MTCC 3017) and Aspergillus niger (ATCC-16888). Additional strains can be added on customer request.

Contact us for more information

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