Monday, March 11, 2013

EU Bans Animal Testing for Cosmetics

Today, the European Union banned the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals. Both animal testing on EU soil and the sale of cosmetic products tested on animals are now illegal in the European Union. 

Since my early teens, I have believed that we, as consumers, have the responsibility to make informed decisions about our purchases and the power to vote with our dollars. I have always purposely avoided make-up and beauty products that were tested on animals, because animal testing is known to be not only ruthless and extremely cruel, but also ineffective, since animals often react completely differently than humans to the chemicals used.

I hope today's ban of animal testing in Europe will lead to further scientific exploration and global acceptance of more accurate, cruelty-free testing methods like testing on donated human tissue and cultures. These alternative methods have the potential to not only spare millions of animals from senseless torture each year, but also to save human cosmetic users from needless irritation and suffering. Compared to cosmetics tested on animals, the probability of cosmetics tested on donated human tissue having an adverse effect on users is greatly diminished. Tests done on human tissue are usually a better indicator of the effects of a chemical than tests performed on animals. Additionally, non-animal testing techniques are frequently less costly and bear results more rapidly than animal tests do, helping to keep prices down for buyers.

These days I actually make the vast majority of my beauty products at home in my own kitchen with products that are healthy, organic and usually safe enough to eat. However, the push for the beauty industry to stop animal testing has been one of my pet causes (no pun intended) for more than twenty years, so I am glad to see Europe take this step in the right direction and hope the rest of the world will soon follow suit.

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