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Who Owns that Cruelty-Free Brand… And What Are Their Values?

You want your cosmetic buying habits to reflect your ethics and values, but how can you be sure the company that you are buying from is truly as ethical as they seem? Successful small cosmetics companies are often acquired by larger corporations; in fact, this report from Business Insider shows that 182 beauty companies are owned by just seven major leaders. You should know who owns the seemingly-small brand you’re making purchases from, and what their values are, before you commit to a cruelty-free product. Otherwise, you could ultimately end up supporting an organization that still uses animal testing.

Who Owns that Cruelty-Free Brand?

Many boutique brands start out with their own labels, testing methods, and formulas. However, as they grow increasingly successful, oftentimes they catch the eye of one of the larger conglomerates. These eight mega-companies – L’Oréal, Shiseido, Estee Lauder Companies, Unilever, Proctor and Gamble, Johnson and Johnson, LVMH, and Coty – employ thousands and make billions in revenue every year. They’re also the forces shaping how consumers think about the beauty industry.

Why Ownership Matters

It’s important to know which umbrella the beauty brand you’re buying from falls under because if you support them, you’re also supporting their parent company – and their values surrounding animal testing may not always align. For the most part, giant cosmetics companies are not certified cruelty-free and still engage in some animal testing. Additionally, when you buy a product that specifies that it is free of animal testing, that label refers only to the item in question, not the brand as a whole. A brand that has only two to three percent of its product line registered as cruelty-free could potentially still secure your business… despite testing the rest of its products on animals.

Check Labels for Clues

The label on your cosmetics must contain several pieces of information. If your long-time favorite brand’s ingredients, certifications, or manufacturing country of origin have changed, it could be an indication that the brand has been sold to a larger company. Chances are that you’ll also see the logo of one of the big names on the label itself, confirming the true owner of the brand. Once you know who is ultimately profiting from your hard-earned dollars, you’ll be able to make a more informed purchase decision.

Watch for Changes

Businesses transform all the time, and a chosen stance on animal testing could potentially change along with it. It’s a good idea to periodically review the products you’ve used for a year or longer to make sure that they’re still just as ethically-minded and cruelty-free as you expect them to be.

Support True Indie Brands

Another option is to check for “indie brands,” or independent beauty companies such as Glossier, Jouer Cosmetics, and Milk Makeup, that produce amazing cruelty-free cosmetics but are not owned by a huge conglomerate. You’ll have complete peace of mind that the cosmetics you’re buying are truly in line with your values.

Do Your Research

As consumers, we like to think that we’re making conscious decisions when deciding to purchase from certain brands – especially when it comes to something as personal as cosmetics. But when you take a step back, it can be challenging to tell what and who you’re actually supporting when brands are so interconnected. That’s why the most important thing you can do is review the facts in order to get a better picture of what’s happening behind the scenes. When you have the transparency and information you need, you’ll be equipped to make well-informed purchase decisions that align with your ethics and values.

Beyond the Label: 6 Signs a Brand Still Uses Animal Testing

Can you spot the signs of animal testing? While reading labels is a good place to start, it doesn’t tell the whole story. Understanding how animal testing works, and how companies use it, can help you choose the most ethical brands to support.

An Ethical, Cruelty-Free Lifestyle

When you know what the signs of animal testing are, you can determine which brands and products you should use and which you should avoid. Committing to an ethical and cruelty-free lifestyle has many benefits – such as safer, non-toxic cosmetic ingredients and an emphasis on eco-friendly qualities – and learning about labeling and animal testing helps to ensure that you only use products that fit with your personal morals and values.

Animal Testing of Cosmetics

Millions of animals, including dogs, cats, mice, and rabbits, are exposed to animal testing every year; much of the testing is cruel and unnecessary. As defined by Humane Society International, “Animal testing” refers to procedures performed on living animals for purposes of research into basic biology and diseases, assessing the effectiveness of new medicinal products, and testing the human health and/or environmental safety of consumer and industry products such as cosmetics, household cleaners, food additives, pharmaceuticals and industrial/agro-chemicals.

Although not required by law, several tests are commonly performed to test cosmetic ingredients on animals, including the Draize test. This method is used to measure the danger posed by a product or ingredient to the eyes and vision. In this test, rabbits are subjected to deliberate application of the testing substance to their eyes, and then the effects are monitored. This is done repeatedly until the experiment is concluded. At the end of testing, most of the animals are killed.

After learning about the inhumane practices that comprise animal testing methods and understanding that animal testing is not required by U.S. law and there are plenty of non-animal testing methods available that get more accurate results cheaper and quicker without causing harm — it’s no wonder that many consumers have committed to cruelty-free shopping and product use.

Signs a Brand May Not Be Cruelty-Free

If a brand exhibits any of the six aspects below, it may be a sign that they still use animal testing.

Their labels: If a brand’s labels feature images of happy animals and nature, but don’t include the words “cruelty-free” or “never tested on animals,” then chances are that they do engage in animal testing. Brands that don’t test on animals are proud of their cruelty-free practices and tend to share them freely.

Their website: The brand’s website should indicate their stance on animal testing; you may have to do some digging, but if you don’t see a page with specifics on their stance, you can assume they most likely incorporate animal testing.

Their parent brand: Buying a product labeled “cruelty-free” is a good start – but you need to know who makes the item in question. A lot of smaller brands are owned by large conglomerates, and many of those organizations have failed to take a position on animal testing. If you buy a cruelty-free product from a brand whose parent company is still using animal testing methods, you’re not really investing your money in an ethical brand.

Their commercials: Commercials and ads for ethical brands can use the terms “never tested on animals” and “cruelty-free” in their advertising. Brands that still test on animals cannot make these claims.

Third party apps and sites: Apps and websites like Cruelty-Free Kitty can help pinpoint cruelty-free products and brands, and maintain updated lists that include details about which brands still use animal testing. Third parties with an objective viewpoint can help provide you with the information you need to make a savvy decision.

Where the product is made: Some countries do not have the same protections as others when it comes to animal testing. Products imported from China, or K Beauty products from Korea, most likely involve animal testing – and if the label is in another language, it could be hard to tell for sure.

Identifying ethical companies and products that use animal testing takes a little extra time and research, but if you’re committed to an ethical lifestyle, it’s well worth the effort. Over time, you’ll be able to create a list of ethical products and trusted brands that you can rely on and support in good conscience.

More States Joining Global Push to Ban Sales of New Animal-Tested Cosmetics

Five more states are set to approve legislation banning the sales of new products tested on animals, joining three states – California, Illinois and Nevada – that have already enacted similar legislation. The five states on the cusp of enacting new laws include New Jersey, Maryland, New York, Virginia and Hawaii, with more states expected to introduce or pass similar legislation in the coming months.

Legislative efforts have gained significant support not only among animal rights groups, but among consumers of all ages as well. As more states join the cause, industry analysts say pressure is being brought to bear on the U.S. to pass a nationwide ban on the sales of new cosmetics products if they or their ingredients were tested on animals.

Worldwide movement

About 40 countries worldwide have passed national bans on the sales of new products that use those testing methods, including every member of the European Union, which enacted its own law in 2013, citing the inhumane, cruel and painful treatment of the animal subjects. But the real impetus behind the legislation domestically and internationally is the availability of tests that don’t use animals. These in vitro tests use cells, tissue samples and other methods to yield results that are just as accurate – or even more so – than the tests used on live animal subjects. Plus, in vitro tests are also cost-effective, making them an easy and obvious choice for today’s cosmetics manufacturers facing an ever-more competitive marketplace.

Many cosmetics companies, including higher-end, boutique brands, have already adopted anti-cruelty policies of their own, appealing to consumers who no longer want the burden of suffering or the negative stigma attached to products that use animal testing. Entire brands have based their philosophies and their marketing efforts on raising awareness of the testing methods traditionally used in the manufacturing of cosmetics and personal products like shampoos and body washes. Those efforts have paid off in terms of a growing market share compared with brands that still use animal testing. Companies that fall behind in adopting newer, cruelty-free methods stand to not only lose huge shares of customers and revenues, but to earn a lot of negative publicity compared to their competitors.

Embraced by industry leaders

Although much of the cruelty-free movement originated with smaller brands who made banning animal testing part of their branding effort, today even major cosmetics and personal care brands are joining the effort, including cosmetics giant CoverGirl. Brands that adhere to a non-animal testing policy sport the coveted leaping bunny logo or similar designations that set their products apart. Popular websites like Cruelty Free Kitty maintain updated lists of brands that don’t use animal testing, making it easy for consumers to find the products they want – and to ignore those that still use animal testing or that import products tested on animals.

So far, outside of the U.S., the biggest hurdle these manufacturers have to overcome is China, which has steadfastly maintained its use of live animal tests on cosmetics and personal care products, despite the availability of less costly in vitro methods. The U.S. has been contemplating a national ban on the sale of new animal-tested cosmetics products since 2014, with support on both sides of the aisle. This past November, the Personal Care Products Council (the nation’s leading cosmetics trade group) gave its support and backing to the legislation, helping eliminate concerns lawmakers may have regarding marketplace opposition.

Making the switch

InVitro International has a history of providing the cosmetics and personal care industry with state-of-the-art in vitro testing aimed at providing the most accurate results without cruel animal experiments. In addition to two patented methods, Irritection® and Corrositex®, our dedicated team can help companies convert their existing lab facilities or perform off-site testing using the latest guidelines and regulations for total peace of mind. To learn more about InVitro International’s products and services, give us a call at 800-246-8487 or use our online form to get in touch today.

Changes Ahead: China’s Journey to Cruelty-Free Cosmetics

China is the world’s second largest economy, surpassed only by the U.S. and accounting for more than a 15% share of the world’s total economic activity. With a growing consumer base and soaring personal economy, it’s no wonder businesses want to do all they can to compete in the Chinese marketplace.

At the same time, though, doing business in China can come at a big cost – especially for companies producing cosmetics and personal care products. In the European Union, the U.S., and other areas across the world, countries are turning away from cruel and outdated animal testing in favor of humane, cruelty-free in vitro testing methods that provide results that are just as reliable and just as accurate – but which don’t involve animal suffering. But in China, the move to embrace non-animal testing methods has been slow. And companies that want to compete in China need to adopt animal testing practices, even if they don’t use them in other markets around the globe. Recently, though, the Chinese government has begun showing indications that it may be willing to forego animal testing – at least for some products and under certain conditions.

Winds of change

Although China has long required animal testing of cosmetics products, in 2014 it made a major step forward by allowing Chinese cosmetics manufacturers to forego animal testing. That means brands with a physical presence in China can market their products without animal testing. However, the law only affects new non-special use cosmetics, and does not include any product that makes specific claims, like anti-aging or whitening products, for example. Additionally, manufacturers who sell products to Chinese consumers using specific online platforms may avoid the animal-testing requirement since those products are only sent to the country after the order is placed. Brands like Lush, 100% Pure and others are able to sell in this way without the need to perform any sort of animal testing.

In March 2019, China expanded on its efforts by stating that post-market animal testing for domestic products and finished imports would no longer be required. Then in January, the Chinese government announced imported products would be subjected to the same regulations as domestic products, signaling a long-awaited shift that should mean a more open marketplace for cosmetics manufacturers that do not use animal testing. More details about the new regulations are expected later this spring.

While a few domestic brands have begun selling their products in China, the word is still out on how well those brands are being accepted by consumers. And for the time being, products manufactured outside of China are still subject to the old animal testing requirements and regulations. From China’s perspective, restricting the regulation to a few companies allows it to measure the results, control expansion of non-animal testing and bring pressure on international companies that hope to do business in its borders. How the new regulations will affect international manufacturers remains to be seen, but most industry leaders believe it will take some time – perhaps a year or more – before any changes go into widespread effect.

Get ready for a cruelty-free marketplace

Regardless of what moves China makes, the global marketplace is becoming increasingly cruelty-free. With the entire EU banning the sale of new animal-tested cosmetics and personal care products and many U.S. states following suit, it’s clear that companies that want to stay competitive need to adopt alternative testing methods that demonstrate their commitment to a kinder world. Consumer demand for products that use cruelty-free testing is soaring, leaving some companies scrambling.

At InVitro International, we help companies of all sizes meet the growing consumer demand with state-of-the-art in vitro tests aimed at providing the most reliable results at a fraction of the cost of animal testing. Plus, we offer off-site testing for companies that prefer to focus their efforts on R&D, leaving the testing to our highly-trained experts. To learn more about InVitro International’s test methods as well as our testing services, contact us at 800-246-8487 or use our online form to get in touch today.

These Major Cosmetic Brands Went Cruelty-Free in 2019

The last 12 months marked a watershed moment for cosmetic companies, as nearly four dozen manufacturers shifted their operations to utilize cruelty-free testing methods for their products. The companies join about 100 other cosmetic businesses that have done away with animal testing, opting instead for cruelty-free options like in vitro testing to ensure their products are safe for consumers.

Consumers demanding cruelty-free products

The use of cruelty-free testing isn’t new; vegan cosmetics have been around for decades. But until recently, the cruelty-free cosmetics market was relegated to a few “boutique” brands, reaching only a tiny share of the consumer marketplace. Today, all of that has changed – and major cosmetics companies have joined forces with leading retailers to provide consumers with plenty of options that help them feel good about the products they’re buying.

In fact, the global marketplace for cruelty-free cosmetics is expected to reach or exceed $10 billion by 2024, with an anticipated growth rate of 6% — significantly higher than the “traditional” cosmetics industry as a whole. What’s driving that growth? Industry experts say there are several factors:

  • Broader adoption of a “vegan” lifestyle, notably among younger consumers and also among baby boomers – two sizable market sectors driving cosmetic sales.
  • Greater awareness among consumers of the pain and suffering inflicted upon animals during the testing phase of cosmetics manufacturing and a desire to play a role in eliminating that pain and suffering.
  • Movements among state and national governments to ban animal testing in new cosmetic manufacturing. To date, roughly 40 countries have banned new cosmetics testing on animals, a number that’s expected to continue to grow.

Companies meeting the need

Cruelty-free cosmetics are now routinely carried by major retailers like Target, along with many leading specialty cosmetics retailers, like Ulta and Sephora. What’s more, consumers can ensure the products they’re choosing are cruelty-free simply by visiting websites like Cruelty Free Kitty, Leaping Bunny, Ethical Elephant, and of course, PETA. Devoted solely to identifying brands that don’t test on animals, Cruelty Free Kitty’s site logged about a quarter million visits during the last half of 2019.

According to the Cruelty Free Kitty website, nearly 150 cosmetic companies have been confirmed to be free of animal products and animal testing, and about 40 companies were added to the list in 2019, including:

  • Covergirl
  • Beautyblender
  • Kylie Cosmetics
  • LA Girl
  • Stargazer
  • Jeffree Star

These and about 30 other companies join major brands like NYX, Marc Jacobs Beauty, Urban Decay, Too Faced, Physicians Formula, Elf and Milani. (The complete list is here.)

 Alternatives to animal testing

While the FDA has never required animal testing for cosmetics products, many manufacturers have resorted to animal testing as the “traditional” choice – or at least, the method that’s been most widely used in the past. Today, though, there are in vitro testing options that offer results that are just as accurate as animal testing. At InVitro International, we offer two state-of-the-art testing methods for cosmetics testing, helping forward-thinking, socially-responsible companies offer products that are safe and attractive to consumers.

Irritection® assay

The Irritection® Assay System is used to test for ocular and skin irritancy, replacing methods like the painful Draize test without sacrificing accuracy. What’s more, Irritection® is far less costly compared to animal testing, and results can be obtained much faster – in as little as 24 hours, compared to several weeks with in vivo testing. Results are also highly reproducible, enabling comparative ranking of formulations with far greater accuracy.

Corrositex® assay

Corrositex® is a full replacement for in vivo rabbit skin corrosivity tests, providing highly accurate results in a fraction of the time of live animal testing – four hours max compared to two to four weeks with live animals. Like Irritection®, Corrositex® offers substantial cost savings without sacrificing reliability, accuracy or safety.

Join the movement to cruelty-free

Our cruelty-free in vitro tests are simple to implement at your own facilities, and we offer comprehensive lab testing services at our site as well. To learn more about how our products and services can help your company grow and thrive in an evolving consumer marketplace, use our online contact form or give us a call at 800-246-8487 today.

Animal Testing of Beauty Products Now Banned in These Three States

While most of us were busy ringing in the New Year at midnight on January 1, three states were quietly making national and international headlines, ushering in a new – and more compassionate – chapter of U.S. history. At that moment, California, Nevada and Illinois became the first three states in the country to ban the sale of new cosmetic products tested on animals, a move that sets a clear path for others to follow.

While these are just the first states of the U.S. to initiate such a ban, more than 30 countries worldwide prohibit the sale of new cosmetics and personal care products that have used animal testing. So far, the U.S. has lagged behind in implementing a national ban on animal testing for the cosmetics industry, but these three states are a clear indication that such a law could be on the horizon.

The move to cruelty-free

The cosmetics industry is huge, with worldwide sales valued at more than $530 billion – and that number is expected to just keep growing larger. The problem is, a lot of those products are tested on live, caged animals, resulting in pain and suffering that lasts for the remainder of the animals’ brief lives.

In animal testing, caustic, chemical-laden products are dripped into rabbits’ eyes or spread on shaved skin, where they cause painful sores and lesions. While manufacturers are legally obligated to ensure their products are safe for human use, there are no requirements mandating testing on live animals. The type of testing that’s used is by and large left to the discretion of the cosmetic manufacturers. For years, rabbits, guinea pigs and other animals have provided a cheap and convenient testing model for manufacturers and independent labs. By passing these new laws, the U.S. joins the international community in recognizing and eliminating cruel lab-testing practices, replacing them with humane options that are just as accurate and effective – and that do not rely on live animals.

The Humane Society of the United States issued a statement hailing the new legislation, pointing to an alternative testing method as a way to promote innovation moving forward. “With thousands of ingredients having a history of safe use and an increasing number of non-animal test methods available to provide data more relevant to humans, often in less time and at a lower cost, companies can still create new and innovative cosmetics without any additional animal testing,” said Kitty Block, president and CEO of the society.

In vitro testing: Good for animals, good for humans

In vitro testing uses tissue samples or other methods to perform complex tests that can yield the same or better results in terms of accuracy and efficacy, without significant (or any) cost increases. Today, there are many different types of in vitro testing available, enabling manufacturers and independent labs to perform the same types of services for maximum confidence in the products they produce. Many in vitro tests use human tissue samples or other methods, providing far greater accuracy than most animal models, where results may not be easily “translated” from, say, a rabbit to actual human use.

Introduced by state Senator Linda Holmes, the new Illinois law prohibits cosmetics manufacturers from selling any new products in the state that have been tested on animals, and levies fines starting at $5,000. The law applies to any new products manufactured after January 1, the date the law officially went into effect.

In a statement issued following the law’s passage last year, Sen. Holmes noted that consumers are demanding products produced in a cruelty-free environment, adding that many large manufacturers are changing their practices to accommodate that trend.

“There are alternative testing methods that are good for business, safe for consumers and certainly move us forward to a humane approach by eliminating the cruel practices of the past,” she noted.

At InVitro International, we’re committed to helping companies implement cruelty-free testing practices with Irritection® and Corrositex®, two in vitro testing methods that don’t rely on live animal models. In addition, we can help manufacturers of all sizes improve their testing practices without increasing in-house lab tests with our own state-of-the-art testing services, performed using our patented methods. To learn more about the products and services we offer, or to find out how we can help your company implement in vitro testing, contact us at 800-246-8487 or use our online form to get in touch today.

What is the Humane Cosmetics Act and Why is it Important?

 

Illinois and Nevada made headlines early this year when, on January 1, they joined California as the only states to ban the sale of cosmetic products that have been tested on live animal subjects. While more than 30 countries have banned animal testing worldwide, the U.S. has been slow to take up the call, opting instead to allow individual states to handle the legislation. That may change, though, thanks to the Humane Cosmetics Act, which was introduced in Congress this past November. The act has gained support from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, with Democrats and Republicans recognizing both its timeliness and its importance to the cosmetics industry, consumers and the animals used in testing. Companion legislation was introduced in the U.S. Senate, also with support from both parties.

What the Act entails

The Humane Cosmetics Act seeks to end animal safety testing of cosmetics products in the U.S. as well as the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals. If passed, the testing portion of the law would go into effect one year after enactment, with the sales portion becoming effective three years after becoming law. The delay allows manufacturers and testing facilities time to alter their testing methods and, for cosmetics manufacturers, time to deplete their existing stock on store shelves and in warehouses.

Why it’s important

As a world economic leader, the U.S. has lagged behind its international counterparts in recognizing the cruel and inhumane practices used in animal testing in the cosmetics industry. In introducing the legislation this past November, Congressman Tony Cárdenas hailed the bill and called the practice of animal testing “inhumane and unacceptable.”

“The cruel and inhumane practice of testing cosmetics on animals is unacceptable,” Cárdenas said. “These tests are unnecessary, especially when there are non-animal, cost-efficient research methods that we can adopt. I’m proud to join my colleagues on both sides of the aisle in introducing this bipartisan bill to protect animals from abuse.”

Congressman Vern Buchanan, co-chair of the Congressional Animal Protection Caucus, agreed. “Scientific advancements have created viable alternatives to these cruel experiments, while still ensuring that cosmetic products are safe for human use,” he noted. “As countries around the world work to prohibit animal testing in cosmetics, it’s time for the United States to get on board.”

Although the Act has strong bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate, it still has a way to go before it’s enacted into a law. Until then, the bill’s sponsors remain very vocal about the need for the ban and in their support of safe, effective alternatives to animal testing.

“Thousands of animals suffer as a result of cosmetic animal testing each and every year in the United States,” noted Congressman Paul Tonko. “Numerous state, national, and world-wide movements are proving that animal testing is not only unnecessary, it is not even the safest or most viable option available. Our Humane Cosmetics Act establishes a national ban on animal testing for cosmetics, as well as supporting the development and implementation of testing alternatives that help ensure the U.S. cosmetics market continues to thrive. This legislation will restore America’s position as a world leader in cruelty-free safety methods that promote the well-being of everyone, humans and animals, alike.”

Alternatives to animal testing

The FDA does require cosmetics products to be tested and deemed safe for human use through enforcement of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act), but there is no FDA or other federal provision requiring animal testing. Instead, the act advises manufacturers to use testing methods that are “appropriate and effective” for making sure their products are safe. In fact, on its website, the FDA states, “We also believe that prior to use of animals, consideration should be given to the use of scientifically valid alternative methods to whole-animal testing.”

InVitro International is a leader in alternative testing products and services, with options for both ocular testing and skin corrosivity testing, the two most common types of tests performed in the cosmetics industry. In addition, InVitro International provides in-house lab testing to help manufacturers and cosmetic companies incorporate cruelty-free testing without investing in a lab of their own. To learn more about InVitro International’s products and services, use our online form or call us at 800-246-8487 to get in touch today.

Animal Testing in 2019: Where Are We?

Thanks to advocacy groups and consumer concerns, companies across all industries have made efforts to decrease their use of animal testing. However, millions of animals around the world are still suffering every year. The statistics below paint a picture of the status of animal testing in 2019, which indicates that we still have a long way to go.

Animal Testing in the United States

•According to, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), approximately 100 million mice and rats are being held in captivity in laboratories across the United States for testing purposes.
•PETA also reports that approximately 1 million larger animals, such as dogs and cats, are being held for experimentation.
•Many animal tests are used to collect data for the purposes of developing cosmetic products, medications and other commodities for humans. However, data collected from animal research is often useless for this purpose and does not provide the needed insight.
•Nearly 50 percent of NIH-funded research involves experimentation on animals.
•When surveyed, more than half of adults in the United States say they oppose the use of animals in tests. Nonetheless, testing on animals continues.
•In the United States, approximately 99 percent of animal experiments are carried out using mice, rats, amphibians, reptiles and birds. However, these small animals are exempted from all of the protections provided by the Animal Welfare Act, leaving them vulnerable to abuse of all kinds.
Animal Testing Around the Globe

•Cruelty Free International reports that more than 115 million animals are used for animal testing around the world on an annual basis. These animals experience pain and suffering when subjected to these tests. In most cases, animals are euthanized during or after the experiment.
•In the field of cosmetics testing alone, Humane Society International reports that 500,000 animals suffer and die every year.
•Even when valid, acceptable non-animal testing alternatives are available, many companies are still choosing to use animals instead.
•Many of the cosmetic tests conducted on animals are antiquated and have not been updated in decades. In fact, Humane Society International reports that some of these tests were originally developed as long ago as the 1920s.
•Consumers and non-profit organizations alike are actively working to ban animal testing around the globe.
In light of these statistics, it’s clear that animal testing is not disappearing any time soon. However, because of new innovations in the field of non-animal testing, alternatives to animal experiments are now available in many cases. In addition, more than 1,000 companies worldwide have already been certified as “cruelty-free.”

InVitro International is proud to offer multiple testing kits and laboratory services companies can use to replace animal tests. Please contact us to learn more about our products and services.

Benefits of Working with InVitro International

InVitro International offers superior non-animal testing services that come with a variety of advantages.
Some of the most notable benefits of working with us include:

1. Protection for animals.
Countless studies and anecdotal reports confirm that animal testing is detrimental to the welfare of animals. Not only are they kept in captivity and ultimately killed to carry out these tests, but they also suffer from pain and discomfort during their time in the laboratory. With our reliable and accurate testing methods, animals will no longer suffer and/or be destroyed for the sake of product tests.

2. Decades of experience.
InVitro International was founded in 1985 and has more than three decades of experience in the development and implementation of non-animal testing methods. In fact, we’ve been in continuous operation longer than any other in vitro testing technology company worldwide.
Because of our experience in the industry and our consistent efforts to produce the best non-animal testing methods on the market, we are able to provide superior products that meet our clients’ needs in every way.

3. Production of useful data.
Non-animal tests don’t provide any benefit to your company if you cannot use the results they produce. Our staff works to develop testing kits and laboratory services that produce data, in which, your company can use to accomplish its specific goals. Our testing methods are designed specifically to create data that will be accepted by regulatory agencies all around the world. For example, our corrosion testing assay is accepted by virtually all agencies, including GHS/OECD.

4. Better correlation with human test results.
Animal tests are typically used to approximate results for humans. However, because of the clear differences between the makeup of testing animals and humans, results don’t always translate well. Our testing methods are designed to provide a better correlation with human test results, which means your company will have a good idea of how your products will affect your actual customers. This allows you to make changes as needed so your customers can make informed decisions.

5. Cost-effectiveness and flexibility.
We offer cost-effective testing options. Our tests can be used for a variety of purposes, such as: skin toxicity, skin irritation, and eye irritation. Because we offer so many options, your company is able to get the specific data it needs to bring safe, effective products to market quickly.

6. A better reputation.
These are just a few of the benefits you can expect when you choose to work with InVitro International. Improve your reputation and boost customer loyalty by working with us! Please contact us today to learn more.

The State of the Cosmetic Industry in China

Animal testing for cosmetics is controversial all over the world, specifically, in the People’s Republic of China. That is all about to change.

Many U.S. and European cosmetic brands are seeing the market potential in China. Retail sales of these foreign beauty products have been on the rise for many years:

• In 2013 — 162.5 billion RMB or 23.14 billion USD
• In 2014 — 182.5 billion RMB or 25.98 billion USD
• In 2015 — 204.9 billion RMB or 29.18 billion USD
• In 2016 — 222.2 billion RMB or 31.64 billion USD
• In 2017 — 251.4 billion RMB or 35.80 billion USD
• In 2018 — 261.9 billion RMB or 37.30 billion USD

The only thing holding foreign brands back is China’s requirement that all cosmetics go through animal testing.

The Battle With PETA

In 2012, PETA announced that some cosmetic companies were paying the Chinese government to do animal testing on their products to allow their products in the country. These companies were previously cruelty-free but gave in to the pressure for animal testing to sell their cosmetic products in the Republic of China.

PETA contacted experts in the field of non-animal testing methods and gave them a financial grant to work with China to change their regulations. After years of lobbying, mainstream cosmetic brands and animal rights groups, like PETA, convinced the government to approve nine cruelty-free animal testing methods for cosmetic imports.

The IIVS Announcement

IIVS is a non-profit that is a leading provider of in vitro testing for toxicological safety evaluations. On April 3, 2019, the Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS) in Gaithersburg, Maryland, sent out an announcement applauding the China National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) for accepting a new way for cosmetics testing.

New regulations will accept nine different testing methods, including:

• Direct Peptide Reaction Assay (DPRA) for Skin Sensitization (OECD TG 442C) – an in chemico assay that models skin sensitization adverse outcome pathway (AOP)
• Short Time Exposure Assay (STE) for eye irritation (OECD TG 491) – a short time exposure assay to assess acute eye irritation as an alternative to the in vitro Draize test that utilizes a rabbit’s cornea
The country’s goal is to modernize its regulatory oversight of cosmetic imports. To make that happen, regulatory bodies within China have been studying new techniques and gaining confidence in them.

In 2017, IIVS partnered with the NMPA and other regulatory agencies in China to understand and build the necessary in-country infrastructure for cruelty-free cosmetic testing. To date, IIVS has trained more than a hundred scientists in the various non-animal testing methods. The first officially approved method was the NRU 3T3 Phototoxicity assay. More recently, approvals are available for DPRA and STE.

China’s National Institutes for Food and Drug Control (NIFDC) has now established an Alternatives Working Group that includes IIVS.

When Changes Take Effect

The changes to the laws in China are set to take effect on January 1, 2020. Until that time, testing remains a requirement.

The regulatory changes in the People’s Republic of China open up the market to brands out of Europe and the United States, giving residents a chance to use some new beauty products. The real winners are the animals. They will no longer endure the cruelty of cosmetic testing.