Humane Cosmetics Act Brings Us Closer to Eliminating Need for Animal Testing for Cosmetics

Francine Lamoriello
EVP, Global Strategies, Personal Care Products Council

It’s often said that the most challenging part of a marathon is the final mile. The goal of eliminating animal testing is a similar journey – one that cosmetics and personal care products companies have been at the forefront of for more than 40 years. The industry has significantly reduced the use of animals in product safety testing through substantial investments in research and development of alternative methods and strategies that do not rely on animals. We are proud of the progress that has been made so far and are committed to the goal of completely eliminating the need for animal testing to assure cosmetic product safety.

Widespread use of non-animal approaches throughout our supply chains is an important and necessary goal to assure our vision. In an effort to harmonize and encourage global adoption of modern approaches to safety assessment, the Personal Care Products Council (PCPC) works closely with international regulators in the International Cooperation on Cosmetic Regulation (ICCR), and we encourage regulatory acceptance of non-animal approaches in every country where our members sell their products. We continue to work closely with our partners, including Cruelty Free International (CFI) and the Humane Society of the United States to advance policies that support improvements in legislation, regulation and science.

We reached a critical milestone in 2019 with the introduction in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives of the Humane Cosmetics Act. The bill prohibits new animal testing of cosmetics and their ingredients and prohibits the sale in the United States of cosmetics that have been tested on animals. Specifically, the legislation:

Prohibits animal testing and bans the use of evidence from animal testing to establish the safety of a cosmetic or cosmetic ingredient unless there is no non-animal alternative method or strategy recognized by any Federal agency or the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development for the relevant safety endpoints and other very strict criteria are met.

Requires the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to promote scientific advancements in this area.

Bans cosmetics manufacturers from including “cruelty free” claims on their packaging if animal testing data was used to establish the safety of the product or any of its ingredients.

Creates a national uniform standard for animal welfare.

Eliminating animal testing in an ambitious goal. Working with animal welfare groups and members of Congress to enact this important legislation helps us protect animal welfare while supporting the continued development of safe and innovative cosmetics and personal care products.

You can read more about the legislation here in a bill summary developed by the Personal Care Products Council and the Humane Society of the United States.