Revlon tests products on animals, Facebook says. Huh? I thought Revlon was one of the few major mainstream cosmetic companies that did not do animal testing. On-line searching turned up confusion matching my own. But from what I could glean, Revlon, formerly cruelty-free, no longer is.
About a year ago, the company wanted to move into the huge market of China. All cosmetics sold in China must meet that country’s safety standards that require animal testing. So Revlon, along with many other previously cruelty-free companies, quietly reintroduced animal testing of their products.
They certainly haven’t advertised this fact. You can go to the Revlon website and see nothing about it one way or the other. PETA apparently had to buy stock in the company in order to raise the question and get a ‘when in Rome, do as the Romans do’ answer. Revlon has been taken off PETA’s cruelty-free list. Avon, Mary Kay and MAC are among others that now do animal testing in order to sell in China.
China is home to companies that have made and exported baby food, toys, pet food and dog treats that have killed and sickened countless children and pets over the past several years. There have been many recalls in North America alone of products due to contamination with melamine, use of lead-based paints and other toxic substances – all made in China. And now expansion into the huge Chinese market requires, by law, that companies previously committed to cruelty-free production and testing must renege on those promises. Such irony! Companies based in the personal injury lawsuit capital of the world – the US – now have to use testing methods that are not required in the US in order to sell in the country that makes and ships toxic goods to US stores.
Companies quietly change practices
When companies change policies and practices quietly, it is hard for watchdog groups to keep track and keep lists updated. And why should a third party even have to do this? Should a company not make its policies and practices, and any changes to those, known to its customers? Sneaking around, hoping no one finds out, splitting hairs about ‘when’ and ‘where’ does not seem like good corporate citizen behaviour to me.
I will use the Revlon products I have. I will not add the crime of waste to that of animal testing But I will not buy any again. If Revlon decided to do something this significant without making it known to their customers, I won’t be going back to them unless they take out banner ads that I cannot miss saying they are not and will never again test on animals. It’s easier to lose a customer than regain one and, Revlon, you’ve lost me.
So how can I buy any company’s products and be sure that a rabbit or a guinea pig has not had to suffer pain and death to ensure that manufacturer’s sales in China? From now on, I will need to see a clear statement on the package. I shouldn’t have to do research each time before making a purchase to know if a “safe” company still is. The bunny will be my guide.
Cruelty-free Beauty takes you to ethical products for sale on Amazon.