I recently caught some news that L’Oreal is buying The Body Shop. This everyday corporate business wouldn’t normally catch my eye, were it not for my abhorrence for animal testing. Now, I’m not a perfect beast, but nearly every product I buy is examined for a ‘cruelty free’ label or purchased from a company that publicly rejects and does not participate in animal testing. L’Oreal is not quite there yet, though you will read mixed messages in the reports regarding the merger. According to Peta — who regularly track company policies — L’Oreal is still on the list of companies who conduct animal testing. According to one article about the takeover, L’Oreal claims they stopped animal testing in 1989, yet when you dig deep enough on L’Oreal’s corporate site you’ll find that they carefully word their policy to read:
L’Oreal has also, for a number of years, been committed to research, development and validation of methods leading to reducing and replacing animal testing of the chemical ingredients used in cosmetics.
There are currently three areas of toxicity for which alternative methods have been scientifically validated and which replace animal testing: skin corrosion, phototoxic potential and percutaneous absorption. L’Oreal Research has contributed extensively to the development, validation and international regulatory acceptance of these tests.
Other articles seem to more directly report on the issue of L’Oreal’s animal testing. From The Toronto Star:
Owen-Jones said L’Oreal wouldn’t be able to stop animal testing overnight, but it does have the long-term plan of “joining Body Shop on the issue.”
And some showed the uglier side of some animal rights advocates. From The Sydney Morning Herald:
Ruth Rosselson of Ethical Consumer Magazine said: “I for one will certainly not be shopping at Body Shop again. L’Oreal has yet to show its commitment to any ethical issues at all.” Animal protection groups called for a boycott.
Back on topic, for more information about companies that do and companies that don’t animal test check my links below. Peta updates their lists every few months. I can honestly say that I don’t support everything Peta does or says, but I do tend to align with them more than I do not.
I suppose my stance on cosmetics testing can be simplified to a few basic questions: If you wouldn’t spray your pet rabbit’s eyes or raw skin with hairspray, why would you let someone else? If you wouldn’t smear mascara into your cat or dog’s eyes, why is it OK for someone else to do it? Is vanity worth the suffering of another creature?
The more you learn about it all, the more you understand the barbaric and often inaccurate practice of animal testing.
Here’s hoping The Body Shop has swift influence over L’Oreal and that we all try to do good by watching what products we buy. Thanks for reading!
Companies that DO and that DON’T animal test
(You can also find similar lists for Charities HERE.)
And, although not related to this post in particular, here’s a link for the animal friendly
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine