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Article: Decoding Symbols On Cosmetic Bottles - What It All Means

Decoding Symbols On Cosmetic Bottles - What It All Means

Decoding Symbols On Cosmetic Bottles - What It All Means

Cosmetic bottles are coded with special symbols to inform us about packaging, product specs, and even company ethics.

As we move towards a more conscious beauty industry, some of these symbols showcase what the company is doing for the environment while others give valuable information about product shelf life. 

The information provided on cosmetic bottles is delivered as printed text as well as symbols that can be hard to translate if you don't know what they mean.

We are starting with the symbols found on Oxygenetix bottles, then we will delve into common ones from other cosmetics.

Oxygenetix Symbols

Recycle Sign (Mobius Loop)

Recycling Symbols

There are different versions of the recycling symbol to communicate information about the container. 

  1. The Recycling Arrows Triangle, also known as Mobius Loop, indicates that the cosmetic container is recyclable. All Oxygenetix bottles are recyclable. The airless pump makes cleaning a breeze, simply use a Q-Tip and warm water to get out any remaining product at the top before recycling.
  2. If the recycling symbol is inside a solid circle, the container was made from recycled material.
  3. If the recycling symbol is inside a circle and has a number percentage inside the symbol or next to it, then it has been made from that percentage of recycled material AND can be recycled. If there's also a letter below, that indicates the type of resin used to make the plastic.

E Mark

e mark

The E mark is a small lowercase e on the bottle located next to the product's weight or volume. This e indicates that the average weight or volume of the product listed on the bottle is the same as what's inside. So you're getting the amount of product advertised. 

PAO - Period After Opening


On most cosmetic containers, there is a symbol of an open jar lid with a number followed by an M to indicate how many months the product will last once it has been opened. When cosmetics are exposed to air, they begin to oxidize. Paying attention to when you open cosmetic bottles can save you from the dangers of expired makeup. 

Oxygenetix products utilize an airless pump, keeping the topicals free from early oxidation. Once opened the shelf life is approximately 24 months.

Green Dot

Green Dot

The Green Dot symbol is another great one to find on cosmetic bottles. This means the company uses a recovery and recycling organization to oversee the management of packaging waste in an eco-friendly manner.

Peta Bunny


If you see the PETA bunny on a container, the company is PETA, ‘People for the ethical treatment of animals', certified cruelty-free. When it also says Vegan, no animal products were used in the production of the cosmetic. 

Oxygenetix is certified vegan and cruelty-free by PETA. We refuse to harm animals for the production or testing of products and use all-natural ingredients derived from plants, not animals. 

Being cruelty-free is so important to us because we don't see a need for the abuse of animals in our industry or any industry for that matter. Oxygenetix is proud to be part of the 'Beauty Without Bunnies' movement and we retrieve our clinical findings through in-person studies.

Here are other symbols you may find on cosmetic bottles:

Leaping Bunny

Leaping Bunny

The leaping bunny is used internationally to symbolize no animals were used for testing when manufacturing the product. This also means the company is following standards set by the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics’ (CCIC). 

CCIC was created to provide consumers with accurate information on cruelty-free cosmetics, personal care, and household products.

Refer to Insert

Refer to Insert

If there's a little booklet that came with the product, this symbol may be on the container to remind you to refer to insert. There is valuable information that may include warnings, ingredients, and proper application techniques. 

Best Before End of Date

This little hourglass means the product will last less than 30 months, whether it has been opened or not. 


1 comment

Thank you for decoding the symbols on cosmetic bottles! This insightful guide not only demystifies the confusing array of symbols but also empowers consumers to make informed choices about their skincare products. Your commitment to transparency and education in the beauty industry is truly commendable. Keep up the great work!


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