Which Cosmetics Brands Test on Animals?
- Has cosmetics animal testing been banned in the UK and EU?
- What happens to animals during cosmetics tests?
- What are the alternatives to animal testing?
- Which cosmetics brands still test on animals?
- 3 Ways to Spot Cruel Beauty Brands
- Shop Ethical Beauty Products
Has cosmetics animal testing been banned in the UK and EU?
Animal-tested cosmetic products have been banned in the UK since 1998 and in the EU since 2013. The ban prohibits the sale of cosmetic products that have been tested on animals or which contain ingredients that have been tested on animals.
In theory, the ban sounds like a great thing, and it would have Truth About Makeup’s full support if it was actually effective. The reality, though, is much bleaker. High numbers of animal-tested cosmetic products are still being sold throughout the UK and the EU.
Unfortunately, government legislation is to blame.
In 2007, the UK and the EU introduced REACH, a regulation which demands manufacturers and importers assess the hazardousness of chemicals to guarantee safety for humans and the environment. And this includes chemicals used solely for cosmetics!
This means that, while non-animal testing methods are favoured under REACH, cosmetics animal testing is still happening right under our noses. And many of the UK’s favourite cosmetics brands are taking part.
Likewise, products and ingredients that are tested on animals for the purpose of satisfying laws overseas are still being sold in the UK and the EU. This is allowed because the tests weren’t commissioned for the purpose of satisfying European safety regulations.
At Truth About Makeup, we’re passionate about providing the UK market with ethically-sourced cosmetic products that are 100% vegan and 100% cruelty free. We want to expose brands that support cruel beauty so that you can make informed decisions about where to buy your makeup and skincare products.
What happens to animals during cosmetics tests?
Cosmetics animal testing is brutal and invasive. Purpose-bred rabbits, guinea pigs, rats and mice are kept in cages and they suffer immensely during their short lives.
Testing can include eye and skin irritation tests, chemical force-feeding and lethal dose testing. Pain relief is never provided. If the animals don’t die during the process, they’re killed once the tests are complete or forced to spend the remainder of their lives injured and in captivity.
To make matters worse, non-animal testing methods are actually better at predicting human reactions to chemicals in lots of cases. These animals are being killed needlessly.
What are the alternatives to animal testing?
Non-animal cosmetics testing is more humane, cheaper and more reliable in many cases than animal testing has ever been.
Thanks to lots of investment and research in recent years, there are countless cruelty-free alternatives to cosmetics animal testing which satisfy both REACH and the UK’s animal-tested cosmetics ban!
In one innovative method for cosmetics testing, organs are simulated on a complex computer model and tested against a vast chemical database. Scientists can actually predict how likely it is that the chemicals in a cosmetic product will cause irritation, illness or death and it doesn’t involve any animal cruelty!
In vitro testing is another great alternative to animal testing. Human cells are placed in a test tube or petri dish alongside different chemicals. The cells act like human skin and can determine chemical toxicity. These types of tests are fast and, since the cells are actually human, they tend to be more accurate at predicting how we’ll react to the chemicals in question.
Another way that manufacturers and importers can guarantee cosmetic products are safe for sale is to conduct human trials. Unlike animals, humans can actually consent to testing and be properly rewarded for their participation. Ethically speaking, human trials are only suitable for the more advanced stages of cosmetics testing but they are still a viable alternative to testing on animals.
Which cosmetics brands still test on animals?
While cosmetics animal testing is officially banned in the UK, lots of well known makeup and skincare brands still conduct tests on animals in order to sell their products in countries where animal testing is required by law.
Let’s take a look at some makeup and skincare brands so that you can be sure to make informed decisions about where you’re buying your cosmetics.
Does L’Oreal test on animals?
L’Oreal is very vocal about the fact that it has not tested its products on animals since 1989. Unfortunately though, L’Oreal sells products in China where animal testing for imported cosmetics is required by law. This means that, while L’Oreal doesn't conduct the tests, it commissions them which explains why the company is not listed as cruelty free with PETA.
Does Marc Jacobs Beauty test on animals?
Marc Jacobs Beauty does not test any of its products on animals and does not commission anyone else to do so. Yay!
Does Queenie Organics test on animals?
Queenie Organics does not test any of its products on animals and does not commission anyone else to do so. Yay!
Truth About Makeup stocks Queenie Organics! You can check out their range of cruelty-free skincare products that have been handmade in the UK here.
Does MAC test on animals?
On its website, MAC admits that it sells in countries which require animal testing for cosmetics by law. What MAC fails to mention, though, is that it funds these tests itself and, as such, should be held accountable for the needless animal cruelty. MAC is not listed as cruelty free with PETA.
Does Benefit test on animals?
Like L’Oreal, Benefit states that it does not test its products on animals and has not done so since 1989. What it fails to mention, however, is that Benefit makeup is sold in China and that its parent company, LVMH, funds the animal testing that’s required there by law. LVMH, which also parents Louis Vuitton, is also responsible for the needless killing of thousands of reptiles.
Does Husk & Seed test on animals?
Husk & Seed does not test any of its products on animals and does not commission anyone else to do so. Yay!
Truth About Makeup stocks Husk & Seed! You can check out their ethical vegan skincare products that have been handmade in the UK here.
Does Lush test on animals?
Lush does not test any of its products on animals and does not commission anyone else to do so. Yay!
3 Ways to Spot Cruel Beauty Brands
At Truth About Makeup, we’re passionate about providing cruelty-free vegan skincare products that are handmade in the UK. We’ll never sell products from brands that test on animals.
Here’s a few ethical top tips on how to spot the worst beauty brands, just in case you’re looking for something that we don’t stock.
1. Check the Ingredients List
At Truth About Makeup, we don’t support the use of animal products for the purposes of vanity. From false eyelashes made from mink fur to keratin taken from animal horns, too many of the beauty products that are currently available on UK shelves are cruelly made from animal-derived ingredients.
Do your research and always check the ingredients list to make sure your beauty products are ethically sourced, vegan and 100% cruelty free!
Here’s some animal-based ingredients to avoid: Beeswax, Carmine, Collagen, Elastin, Guanine, Keratin, Lanolin, Shellac, Squalene, Tallow.
2. Look for Cruelty-Free Certifications
Luckily, there are some passionate organisations out there that do all of the important research for us! These organisations certify companies that never conduct or commission animal testing, making it easier for consumers to tell whether a brand or product is cruelty free.
The Leaping Bunny is an internationally recognised logo that is displayed by brands to guarantee animal-testing hasn’t taken place on the finished product or its ingredients (view logo here).
PETA’s Global Beauty Without Bunnies program offers a number of licensed logos to companies that do not test on animals (view logos here). These logos guarantee that the companies that use them never conduct or commission animal testing.
Products with the Vegan Trademark are never tested on animals and never contain animal-derived ingredients (view logo here).
Warning! Please be wary. In recent years, the UK market has been inundated by copycat certification logos that have been designed to trick consumers into believing a product or brand is cruelty free. Always make sure logos or trademarks are official and licensed.
3. Check Cruelty-Free Databases
Official certifications can be expensive – if a brand is certification free it doesn’t necessarily mean its products are tested on animals.
Luckily, you can also validate whether a brand has ethical practices by checking an online cruelty-free database. The most reliable lists are from Cruelty-Free Kitty and PETA.
Shop Ethical Beauty Products
Truth About Makeup is all about transparency – we want to shine a light on the cruel and unethical practices that are still occurring within the cosmetics industry.
Our entire product range is 100% vegan and 100% cruelty free, and it always will be.
Shop our selection of ethically-sourced natural skincare products here and support independent UK brands on their mission to end animal cruelty.