The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require animal testing for cosmetics. Yet, it is a common practice by many cosmetic companies worldwide. In fact, it's so common that over 100 million animals are used unnecessarily for testing every year.
The sustainability of our planet and the protection of all living creatures is vital. Thankfully, more and more companies are realizing the importance of this mission and they are embracing the development of vegan and cruelty-free products. As a consumer, you can do your part to by mindfully supporting these businesses and by consciously buying products that have not been used in testing.
So how do you know if a product is cruelty-free and/or vegan? The Leaping Bunny certification is different from others out there. Developed by the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics, it requires companies to uphold the strictest non-animal testing standards to achieve its international certification. This includes proving that both raw materials and finished products are not tested on animals before being certified. To retain Leaping Bunny certification, companies must uphold its standards at all times. The Coalition requires documentation of all the ingredients used. At any time, it can send representatives to perform on-site audits of the facility and the products produced there.
The Certified Vegan Logo is a registered trademark, similar in nature to the kosher mark, for products that do not contain animal products or byproducts and that have not been tested on animals. The certified logo is easily visible to consumers interested in vegan products and helps vegans to shop without constantly consulting ingredient lists. It also helps companies recognize a growing vegan market, as well as bringing the word Vegan—and the lifestyle it represents—into the mainstream. (Please keep in mind, however, that the logo is not yet on every vegan product.) The Certified Vegan Logo is currently on thousands of products manufactured by over 1000 companies.
Purchasing and using cruelty-free and vegan skin care products are not driven by a mere trend with a limited shelf life. They are actions driven by a lifestyle—and work style—of integrity that will remain timeless. The transition will require some time and research upfront to find the best products for your skin, but the rewards and peace of mind will be forever worth the effort.