An update on cruelty-free
Q. I am trying to find natural skincare products that have no animal ingredients, that are not tested on animals, and indeed contain no ingredients that are tested on animals. Do you know of any British sites that only sell cruelty-free products and brands? A. You may have seen that on 11th March this year, the sale of cosmetics that have been newly tested on animals was banned within the European Union, 30 years since the RSPCA began campaigning for ‘cruelty-free’ cosmetics.
Gavin Grant, chief executive of the RSPCA, said: 'Animal testing in the name of beauty has never been acceptable. Many cosmetic companies are multinational but this legislation means that they can’t avoid a test ban in the EU by carrying out tests in other countries. If their products or ingredients have been newly tested on animals then they cannot be sold in the EU, no matter where the testing took place.'
'This is a great day for animals but it isn’t the end of the story - there are still many animals being used across the world to develop cosmetics products that will be sold outside of the EU. We will now be taking our message to these countries and companies to ask them to follow our lead and end this suffering.'
Additionally, millions of animals are still abused to test chemicals used in other industry sectors. When it comes to domestic cleaning, we prefer to use ranges such as Method, who say: ‘Method is 100% cruelty-free, has never tested its products nor their ingredients on animals and does not endorse, request nor commission any animal testing on our behalf…for our product safety testing we use in-vitro (non-animal), simulated skin and eye irritation tests’. For a fuller explanation, click here.
One website that you may be interested in for cosmetics is www.lovelula.com, a dedicated natural beauty site. Their policy on animal testing is this: ‘We only stock products made by companies that do not test their products or ingredients on animals, nor pay third parties to do animal testing for them. Some of the products we stock have been certified by the BDIH or the Vegan Society. As part of the certification process these products have had to prove that they don't engage in such practices.’
We also like small companies, which offer hand-made products so you can check with the founders exactly what is in them. Among these are Kate Logan Beauty - find her at www.kateloganbeauty.com - who says: ‘None of my products (or the ingredients used in them) have ever been tested on animals’.
Another company we applaud is Orchard View Naturals - find them at www.ovnaturals.co.uk - run by aromatherapist Lucy Stevens, who says: ‘We ask all our ingredients suppliers for written confirmation that they do not test on animals. This is very important to us.’
We suggest you visit www.leapingbunny.org, the website of The Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics, which has several questions over the new ban in their FAQ. The Leaping Bunny Program also certifies household products and offers the Compassionate Shopping Guide, available as a download if you click here.
And finally, do also look at Cruelty-Free International on www.buav.org, the first global organization dedicated to ending cosmetics animal testing worldwide, which is supported by stars including Chrissie Hynde, Twiggy, Jenny Seagrove, Kimberly Wyatt and Joanna Lumley.