10 States Have Banned the Sale of Cosmetics Tested on Animals

Alex James, Staff Writer

10 states have officially banned the sale of cosmetics tested on animals through recently passed legislation in a victory for animal rights activists. California was the first state to pass such a law, with the California Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act taking effect on Jan 1, 2020. The law prohibits the sale of any cosmetics that have been tested on animals after Jan 1, 2020, as well as the sale of any cosmetics that contain ingredients that have been tested on animals. Since then, several other states have followed suit. The law, New York Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act, will go into effect in January 2023. Other states such as Maine, Hawaii, Nevada, Virginia, Maryland and Illinois, will also implement such laws.

Animal rights groups have hailed these laws as a major victory, as cosmetics testing on animals has long been a controversial practice. Many animals, including rabbits, guinea pigs and mice, have been subjected to harsh and painful testing procedures in order to assess the safety of cosmetics for human use. These tests can include applying chemicals to the skin and eyes or force-feeding animals large amounts of a substance to determine its toxicity. Testing cosmetics on animals can now be replaced with equally beneficial human-cell based tests and computer modeling.

While the sale of cosmetics tested on animals is now banned in several states, animal rights activists are calling on the federal government to pass a nationwide ban on the sale of such products. Until then, consumers can look for cruelty-free cosmetics by checking for the Leaping Bunny or PETA’s Beauty Without Bunny logos, which certifies that a product has not been tested on animals.