Cruelty-free: What is your standard?

The majority of feedback I receive on this site is in relation to what is or isn’t cruelty-free. I do my best to report on what I know is cruelty-free, and if you think I may be wrong, or misinformed, please let me know! The last thing I want to do is to be promoting a product from a company I think is fantastic, when they actually stink major trucker balls.

There are two variations of cruelty-free that I have noticed. First of all, there is the concept that a product can be considered cruelty-free or animal-friendly if that sole product or that entire product line is not tested, yet the parent company does test (or at least doesn’t claim they don’t test) on their other lines. We see this with L’Oreal’s EverSleek / EverCreme / EverStrong lines, who claim their products to be “100% Vegan – Formula not tested on animals. Contains no animal byproducts.” – as it states on these product lines. But within the animal welfare community, L’Oreal is in no way considered a crusader for ending animal testing on cosmetics.

Secondly,  there are companies whose products are 100% cruelty-free; none of their products contain animal ingredients, nor do their ingredients come from tested sources, and the final product is also not tested on animals.

Of course we also have standards set by organizations like Leaping Bunny, or PETA. Companies can apply to be certified by these animal welfare organizations, and it often involves a signed commitment to being cruelty-free (according to the standard set by the particular organization), and even detailed disclosure of testing practices. These organizations serve as a helpful shopping guide, though they are not the be-all-end-all of cruelty-free possibilities.

What is your standard of cruelty-free?

I’d love to hear from you on this issue. Will you support companies like L’Oreal who have product lines that are not tested on animals, but who do not, in any way, ensure their other products are cruelty-free? Or will you only purchase from companies who are 100% cruelty-free in their practices and ingredient sources? Does a company have to have a PETA, LB, or similar certification in order for you to purchase it?

Let’s get the conversation going, everyone! Like this post and comment below if you want to discuss!

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Ending Animal Testing: Who DOES and DOESN’T test?

Unilever is the mother-company of these brands, and not only are these brands of crap quality ingredient-wise, they are also a part of the animal-testing crisis we see today.

Part of the major reason why I began this blog, was because of my close connection with animals, and my disgust that these precious creatures were being abused, and tested on for something as superficial as cosmetics, or household supplies. I oppose animal testing of all forms, and whether it is through my animal sitting services, this blog, or how I care for any animal I meet, it is the passion that drives me!

/end sentimental portion

I was in the drug store earlier today, and that’s what sparked my desire to write this entry for you all. I needed to buy mouthwash, and unfortunately the shelves were dominated by the likes of Colgate and Crest. I picked the Tom’s  of Maine baking soda mouthwash. Love this stuff!

I’m always trying to reform the choices I make, and to keep up with what is and isn’t cruelty-free. I wanted to buy some tea, and I reached for some Lipton black tea with lemon, then realized it was Unilever (duh, Alyson!). This is NOT a cruelty-free brand. The product may just be tea, but on some level it is funding the company’s continued abuse of animals.

I think it’s high time, and extremely useful, to be able to provide my readers with a collection of reliable animal welfare organizations, who all compile their own shopping guides aka lists of brands that DO test, and that DO NOT test. For the longest time, PETA was the most common organization to do this.  Unfortunately, their reputation has been compromised, and they no longer seem to be a commonly considered reliable source for cruelty-free consumers.

And here are the organizations I will recommend you take a look at! Click on their logos to visit their websites and begin browsing for cruelty-free brands!

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There are more of these organizations out there, so I would appreciate it if people commented below with links to more. Each of these organizations have their own unique standards, but overall, they are quite consistent with their anti-testing policies.

There are many little things people can do, whether it is switching their brand of toothpaste, or choosing not to consume meat from factory farms. All of these efforts work to limit, and hopefully eventually bring an end to needless suffering.

My darling Stella (pictured above) thanks you for reading, and hopes you will consider to make cruelty-free choices in your future.

One Voice Responds; Re: Yves Yocher’s Status

As promised, here is the response I received from the French animal welfare organization, One Voice. Keep in mind, their response (which is italicized) is in European French, so I’ll do my best to translate for you all. Parts of the message that are highlighted are of particular importance, and I’ll jump in mid-response to explain what is meant. The gist of it: Yves Rocher no longer maintains the requirements of the One Voice label.

“Bonjour,

Merci pour votre message.

Notre label est plus complet dorénavant car il s’étend à d’autres produits que d’hygiène et cosmétiques.

Nos nouveaux critères : aucun ingrédient testé, pas de matière animale et bio, sont plus exigeants et en lien avec notre éthique ; mais ils correspondent également aux modes de consommation émergents.”

  • One Voice has newer standards than they used to, and this now includes: all ingredients that make up a product must NOT have been tested on animals, and must be organic
  • These principles, though more stringent, are more in line with One Voice’s ethics. One Voice sees this reflected in consumer trends

“Nous communiquons par produits et non plus par gammes et entreprises comme avant. Yves Rocher avait notre ancien label.”

  • Yves Rocher was certified under the previous standards of One Voice

Nous contactons les entreprises qui avaient notre ancien label pour leur présenter le nouveau et puis analyser leurs produits pouvant correspondre à nos nouveaux critères. Bien évidemment, la condition sine qua non d’obtention du label, comme pour notre ancien label, est ce qu’aucun ingrédient n’ait été testé.

  • One Voice reached out to the companies who met their old standards, to see if their products qualified for One Voice certification under new standards
  • Of course, the mandatory condition to qualify was that not one ingredient in any of their products (not the final products themselves) had been tested

“Quand les entreprises communiquent, elles parlent en termes de produits finis ; n’ayant pas le droit de faire mention des ingrédients. Il n’ y a également aucune obligation de mettre un logo sur les emballages.”

  • Many companies often speak only of the final product, when they make cruelty-free claims; neglecting the individual ingredients

“La liste actuelle n’est pas exhaustive car nous avons de nombreux dossiers en cours.

http://label.one-voice.fr/produits/

Merci pour l’intérêt que vous portez à nos actions et la défense animale.

Bien cordialement,

Michèle
Responsable des relations
02 51 83 18 10
12 rue Gustave Eiffel   44810 HÉRIC
Tél. 02 51 83 18 10 / fax 02 51 83 18 18
www.one-voice.fr

  • This last part mentions a link that I’d been searching for, where a consumer can search for a product to see if it meets One Voice standards
  • The list is obviously constantly being updated / changing because of situations such as this, and they’ve always got several open cases under investigation

So there you have it. I’ll gladly contact more organizations, if people like. But at this point, I’m quite certain we can file Yves Rocher into the cruelty category.

Thank you for reading!

Leaping Bunny’s Response Re: Yves Rocher’s Status

I promptly received a response from Kim at Leaping Bunny, and suspicions about Yves Rocher have been confirmed! Here’s the response below (with my own emphasis):

“Hi Alyson,

Thanks for your email. Our European partner, the European Coalition to End Animal Experiments removed Yves Rocher from our list after it became clear some of their products/ingredients were being tested on animals in accordance with Chinese law in order to legally sell their products in this country. Because we keep the same list of cruelty-free companies, we removed them from our list as well. I hope this information is helpful!

Best,

Kim
Communications Manager
Leaping Bunny Program

Here it is, folks! From Leaping Bunny themselves. Yves Rocher is NOT cruelty-free, because they’ve decided to allow for testing on some products/ingredients, in order to sell in China. And who is to say the products they sell outside of China are still guaranteed cruelty-free? Without having a cruelty-free certification, what is their incentive to keep any of their products cruelty-free? They’ve clearly been deceiving the public.

Here are 6 Reasons to choose the Yves Rocher brand, as they claim on their website. Number 4 is “Respect for Nature & Safety”. They continue to claim their products are never tested on animals.

Lies, Yves Rocher, all lies!

Feel free to extend your thanks to Leaping Bunny for continuing to maintain their standards, and ensuring we have a reliable source of cruelty-free consumer information!

Please await my entry where I post the response I received from One Voice.

A Letter to Leaping Bunny; re: Yves Yocher’s Animal Testing Policy

Hi, everyone! I know that the status of Yves Rocher’s animal testing policy has been a major concern. Ever since I posted the first entry about Yves Rocher in 2011, it has remained a constant topic; a topic that I also agree is very important and necessary to discuss. Despite the article from 2010 confirming Yves Rocher’s cruelty-free certification from One Voice, speculation has remained.

Here is the email I sent to Leaping Bunny; I also sent a similar version to One Voice.

“Hello!

I run a cruelty-free blog (https://theclassyanarchist.wordpress.com/), and have regularly consulted your website regarding cruelty-free companies. One company, in particular, has come to my attention. One of my most regularly consulted posts has been about the animal-testing policy of Yves Rocher. I have always suspected their integrity, which is why I initially posted this: https://theclassyanarchist.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/yves-rocher-what-is-your-animal-testing-policy/ , and have since received much response. At the time I posted this, apparently Yves Rocher was on your list of cruelty-free companies, but I notice they are no longer there.

Can you provide some insight on this, so I can post the information on my blog and let others know? If Yves Rocher is no longer certified by Leaping Bunny, then I feel it is very important to inform as many as possible about this.

Thank you for reading,

Alyson R
The Classy Anarchist
https://theclassyanarchist.wordpress.com/

I plan on posting a generic letter format that anyone can use to send to companies to consult them about their animal-testing policies, or to consult an organization such as Leaping Bunny or One Voice, to check up on the status of a company. This is a very important issue, and the more people who contact these companies, the more likely things will change.

Thanks for your help!

Have you heard the Crazy Rumors!?

Those who know me know what gets me excited! And this is why I bring you this blog post.

A friend of mine gave me a heads up about a company that makes amazing, cruelty-free, and VEGAN lip products. Of course, I jumped at the opportunity to check them out.

They go by the name of Crazy Rumors!
This delightful company sent me some sample products to try out. I received two lip balms from their Fresh Squeezed collection, in Pink Grapefruit Juice, and Limeade.

Top: Pink Grapefruit Juice; Bottom: Limeade. Both: DELICIOUS!

How did my extra-sensitive lips feel about these delightfully citrus and thirst-quenching lip balms?

Let me first list the ingredients for you: Organic Jojoba Oil, Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Organic Shea Butter, Candelilla Wax, Soy Wax, Natural & Organic Flavors &/or Pure Essential Oils, Vitamin E, Organic Carnauba Wax & Natural Stevia.

They came with me on my trip to New Hampshire, and boy am I glad I had them on hand. Upon application my lips feel so super smooth and moisturized, and not a sign of irritation since I began using them. If I close my eyes and give one of them a smell, I’m taken back to a summer day as a kid, having fun in my backyard and drinking freshly-made juice mom made. They even remind me of those delicious low-sugar homemade juice popsicles she would make!

Citrus not your thing? Not a problem! Crazy Rumors has gumball, soda, tea, coffee, ice cream, candy cane, and even a mystery-inspired scent!

While Crazy Rumors is dedicated to providing the consumer with cruelty-free vegan products, they also provide the opportunity for consumers to make a contribution, through their purchase, to the Leaping Bunny Program. This program is part of a growing movement to identify to consumers which products and companies avoid the use of animal testing anywhere down the line of production. If you pick up Crazy Rumors’ Leaping Bunny balm (a to die for plum apricot scent), 50% of each purchase is donated to the Leaping Bunny program.

As a consumer who cares where my products come from, and how they were made, I appreciate knowing my lip balms were made a) via cruelty-free methods, b) with vegan ingredients, and c) knowing that funds from certain products are going towards the much-needed cause of animal welfare awareness.

Not to mention, these products don’t cost a fortune! Vegan products don’t have to be insanely over-priced and out of budget for the everyday person. Each delightful Crazy Rumors balm (except for the Leaping Bunny balm, which is $3.99 each, and their HibisKiss line of lip colours, which is $4.99 each), will cost you a whopping $3.49 (yes, that’s correct) each! Want em all? Each collection can be purchased in a sweet little boxed set! And in return for your purchase, you will have delectably soft, and satisfied lips.

What lip balms do I want to try out next? A friend of mine who orders from them regularly picked me up two other flavours (I just can’t help but call them flavours – I’ll try not to eat them;). Peppermint Lemongrass, from the Brew collection, and Ginger Ale from the Soda Pop collection!

I’ll be sure to give you all my input on these.

My only complaint – they don’t last long enough on my lips! Perhaps it’s because I keep licking them off.  As someone with extremely sensitive lips, it is awesome to have found a brand that I can stand behind ethically, and at the same time *love* their products.

Thanks Crazy Rumors! ❤