80% of Countries Allow Animal Testing for Cosmetics
While there are newsworthy articles about countries vowing to stop animal testing in cosmetics, there is still a very long way to go! It’s hard to believe, but 80% of countries still allow animal testing for cosmetics products. This quick video by the Be Cruelty-Free Campaign gives insight into the practice.
The UK is the world leader in stopping the practice
An article by Maria Chiorando states that the UK has had overwhelming support across party lines in putting forth a resolution to the UN to halt cosmetic testing on animals worldwide.
Cosmetic testing on animals has been banned in the UK since 1997, followed by the EU in 2013. The ban has saved thousands of animals unnecessary torture. Cruelty-Free International, in conjunction with Dr. Lisa Cameron SNP MP, have been instrumental in bringing awareness of this global issue. Dr. Cameron states
“whilst the UK is world-leading in animal welfare, this is often Ineffective because most of the rest of the world still has inadequate laws allowing animal tests for cosmetic products and ingredients.” ” Modern methods are more relevant to humans and have been found to predict human reactions better than traditional animal-model methods.”
A massive step in the right direction and it’s the hope that countries like China will stop their mandated testing that causes animal blindness, poisoning, and death in the name of beauty.
California is trying hard
Bill SB1249 would make it unlawful for any cosmetic manufacturer to sell any cosmetic in California if the final product or any component of the final product is animal tested after January 1, 2020. It is the hope that if California bans the sale of animal-tested cosmetics, manufacturers will have no choice but to stop testing for the entire United States. One can only hope this happens! Sadly it will not do anything regarding China and their mandated testing on animals.
The EU, India, Israel, Norway and others have already banned or are in the process of banning cosmetics animal testing. The European Parliament also recently passed a resolution calling for its members to push for a worldwide ban on animal testing! Fingers crossed that it will work!
In Canada, the Senate passed the Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act (Bill S-214). The Bill, first introduced in 2015, is waiting to be signed into law. As of the “effective” date, in Canada, animal testing and the sale of the animal tested products will be prohibited. It’s fair to say that most consumers aren’t aware that animal testing has been legal in Canada. As a Canadian, I know I was shocked.
Furthermore, the passing of this Bill hasn’t been headline news. I hope in time, the passing of this Bill will become headline worthy and make the population aware of the legality of cosmetics animal testing in Canada. Until this is a Law, cosmetics animal-testing will continue. The big question is, how long will it take for the Bill to become Law and what will the timeframe be for an “effective” date? Things move very slowly in government, and the “dirty little secret” of cosmetics animal testing will continue until it legally cannot. Let’s hope this happens quickly!
The why and how
I write about China a lot, I know, but it’s for good reason. China represents 20 % of the global beauty market. China is a massive market, and an exchange of its size means colossal profits. In China, the law requires animal testing on all imported beauty products. These tests are carried out by their government health agency. While companies do not necessarily carry out the practice themselves, animal testing is the price they’re willing to pay for selling in mainland China. What’s gets confusing for consumers is that many Cruelty-free companies sell in China, or their parent company sells in China. There’s no way around it, sold in China means animal testing, so is it genuinely cruelty-free?
It’s not as straightforward as you might think
I was surprised to hear that 200 of the worlds the most prominent brands are owned by roughly seven global companies. The Leaping Bunny is the authority on all things cruelty-free, but they will certify a company that doesn’t test in its manufacturing, even when it sells in China. It gets a little fuzzy and consumers do need to be aware so that they can pick their line in the sand.
Here’s some company information that you may not be aware of:
- Urban Decay is cruelty-free and not sold in China, but it is owned by L’Oreal which sells in China and tests on animals. L’Oreal owns Kiehl’s and la Roche-Posay and many other “cruelty-free” companies as well.
- Aveda is cruelty-free and not sold in China, but Estee Lauder owns it, and Estee Lauder is one of China most popular beauty brands.
- Deciem, the company that makes Niod, Hand Chemistry and The Ordinary, decided to sell in China which makes them not so cruelty-free after all.
- Kat von D’s line is owned by Kendo, part of a large company that owns Dior and Dior perfume is HUGE in China.
- The list goes on and on and on.
What do we do in the meantime?
Do your research; there are many people online, like me, who are genuinely passionate about this topic. Read what you can and shop from their recommendations and reviews. Remember, most of the cruelty-free companies do not do big-time advertising so you won’t see their ads on TV while you’re watching the 6 o’clock news. You’ll find them primarily online or in the occasional brick and mortar locations. Be aware of the source of products, which parent companies are involved, and if they sell to Mainland China.
As the new resolutions, bills and laws slowly grind through governments, we can do our part. As a consumer, you decide what passes your litmus test in cruelty-free products. Your dollars do the talking. I would like to see a worldwide ban on cosmetics animal testing, so I’m acutely aware who I support and promote. Many of the companies on my Company Guide you may not have heard of, but they put their hearts and souls into developing ethical products that are a joy to use. That’s who I feel deserves my consumer dollars.
Do you have any questions? I’d be happy to answer them or direct you to another source.