I used to adore makeup, cosmetics and all things beauty related. It was an artform that I relished in. I’ll be the first to admit, but when I purchased new mascara, lipstick or moisturiser, I did not consider the ethics of beauty brands. I was too beguiled by the vibrant eyeshadow colours, the weird but wonderful mascara wands and pore reducing primers. As I got older, I fell out of love with makeup and coincidentally realised some deeply unsettling truths about the beauty industry. Undeniably, the beauty industry is built on deceit. You’re sold pleasure, whether it be through sex, shiny packaging, photoshopped images or a celebrity endorsement. All of which, I assume you’re aware of, but decide to ignore. However, there is far darker, more serious and disturbing truth, which I ask you to not ignore. By using ambiguous language and deceitful claims, cosmetic companies have hidden this shameful truth for years. It’s apparent in popular high street and high-end beauty brands. Yet, as consumers, we are none the wiser. It causes organ damage, birth defects, convulsions, internal bleeding, swollen eyes and inevitably death. This is the shameful reality of cosmetic animal testing.
I’m assuming like I did, that you thought cosmetic animal testing was a thing of the past. However, according to Humane Society International, 100,000-200,000 animals suffer and die for cosmetics every year. In 2013, the European Union passed a law which made it illegal to sell animal-tested cosmetics in Europe. This was a landmark case, which quickly saw India and Israel follow suit. However, the law had a loophole. It may be illegal to test cosmetics on animals in Europe, but there is no legislation which prevents companies from selling their cosmetics to countries who test on animals, outside of Europe. The most obvious case in point is mainland China. In their emerging markets, cosmetics must be tested on animals. If cosmetic companies want to sell to China, then they have to pay for tests on animals to meet their cosmetic policies. More often than not, cosmetic companies pay third party organisations to carry out the tests on their behalf.
Such as: Clinique, Maybelline, Bobbi Brown, NARS, Benefit, Elizabeth Arden, O.P.I, Clarins, Victoria’s Secret, Glam Glow, Mary Kay, La Mer, Boscia, Origins, Make Up Forever, Nivea, Olay, L’Oréal Paris, Kiehl’s, Mac, Dior, Lancôme
For a full list of Non-Cruelty Free brands visit: https://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/companies-that-test-on-animals/
The only way to ensure you are not implicitly supporting animal testing, is to only buy from companies that do not sell their products to China. Officially, these brands are vehemently against animal testing, as stated by their policies online in accordance with EU laws. In most instances, they make a vague statement, which claims they only test on animals in countries where it is absolutely necessary or required by law, like China. This is, frankly, an absurd statement. If these companies were entirely transparent, they would have no shame in exposing what happens to animals for cosmetic testing. Whereby, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, rats and mice are exposed to chemicals for skin and irritation tests. The solutions are rubbed into the shaved skin of test subjects, or solutions are dripped into the eyes of rabbits. They also conduct repeated oral force-feeding tests, to look for health hazards or potential defects. Injuries are severe and often result in death. Pain relief is not provided during these tests or experiments. After the experiments are finished, test animals are killed, either by neck breaking, decapitation or asphyxiation. Clearly, this isn’t something of the past, but very much the present.
There are several successful and popular alternatives to cosmetic animal testing. In vitro testing uses humans rather than animals, by utilising human cells and tissue. Several computer modelling programmes have been established to aid the process, along with human volunteers for test subjects. By testing cosmetics on humans, we are not hindered by species differences. Testing cosmetics on animals is useless when we do not share the same characteristics. Hence, human testing is a lot more effective. Cosmetics tested in this way are therefore cruelty-free. There are thousands of cruelty-free, inexpensive and accessible brands out there, you just need to know what you’re looking for.
Such as: Urban Decay, Dermablend, Tarte, Lush, B (at Superdrug), Elf, NYX, Revolution, Kat Von D Beauty, The Body Shop, Lush, Neal’s Yard Remedies, Dr Hauschka, First Aid Beauty, Barry M, Naturals, Pixi, Collection, Makeup Revolution etc.
For a full list of Cruelty Free Brands visit: https://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/list-of-cruelty-free-brands/
If you’re unsure, always look out for the bunny logo!
It’s now 2020. Cosmetic testing, regardless of what circumstance, is barbaric and outdated. Beauty brands have a duty to be transparent to their consumers. We are being deceived, lied to and sold a distorted version of reality to ease their conscience. Whether it’s purely profit or demand, cosmetic companies must stop selling their products to China and paying for third party organisations to conduct tests on animals. As the consumer, we have the power to tell brands what we want. We have to boycott brands that test on animals. We must be actors in the change we wish to see. The time has come, for us to act.