Not-tested-on-animals_clip_image002 NO ANIMAL TESTING


Unfortunately, in the cosmetics industry, testing cosmetics on animals is not yet a thing of the past. Many cosmetic companies test products – from eye shadows to soaps to sunscreens – on rabbits and guinea pigs to assess whether the product can cause damage, irritation or allergic reactions when applied to sensitive areas (like the eyes) or broken skin.

Companies that do test their products on animals list the following advantages: protecting human health and safety, safeguarding the environment and/or helping them maintain a competitive edge.



  •  Human skin is not the same as animal skin. One key difference is the distribution of fine blood vessels within  the skin. Humans and animals react differently to products. Testing products for human use on animals is less accurate than testing products for human use on humans.
  •  Cosmetic testing on animals is expensive.
  •  Animals suffer pain, spend their lives in cramped cages and often die shortly after the testing.



  •  Cell cultures
  •  Tissue cultures
  •  Testing on corneas from eye banks
  •  Sophisticated computer models
  •  Using human volunteers


Fortunately, many of today’s leading cosmetics companies have chosen alternatives to animal testing. Their products undergo clinical studies using human volunteers who love being the first to experience the products.


Ban on animal testing

        Not-tested-on-animals_clip_image001 NO ANIMAL TESTING

Regulatory context

The Cosmetics Directive provides the regulatory framework for the phasing out of animal testing for cosmetics purposes. It establishes a prohibition to test finished cosmetic products and cosmetic ingredients on animals (testing ban), and a prohibition to market in the European Union finished cosmetic products and ingredients included in cosmetic products which were tested on animals for cosmetics purposes (marketing ban). The same provisions are contained in the Cosmetics Regulation, which replaces the Cosmetics Directive as of 11 July 2013.

The testing ban on finished cosmetic products applies since 11 September 2004; the testing ban on ingredients or combination of ingredients applies since 11 March 2009.

The marketing ban applies since 11 March 2009 for all human health effects with the exception of repeated-dose toxicity, reproductive toxicity and toxicokinetics. For these specific health effects the marketing ban applies since 11 March 2013, irrespective of the availability of alternative non-animal tests.