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Using the "Cruelty-Free" logo in Europe

These last twenty years, cosmetic products designated as being “cruelty-free” have been gaining popularity. As a matter of fact, consumers tend to be more and more eco-conscious and look for products that are environmental and animal-friendly. At the European scale, this translates into the implementation of several laws on the matter. EcoMundo provides you with guidance on the use of the Cruelty-Free logo when importing your cosmetic products in Europe.

animal-testing

Cruelty-Free: what does it mean?

Designating your products as Cruelty-Free implies that:

  • - no finished product or ingredient composing the latter has been tested on animals,
  • - suppliers have to provide a certificate attesting that they do not perform animal testing,
  • - the brand accepts to be checked at any time by an independent organisation.

What does the European Regulation say?

The law on the animal testing matter is constantly evolving in Europe.

In 2004,cosmetic products tested on animals are forbidden on the European territory. This is a first step, considering that, at that point, the law only takes into account the final cosmetic product, and not the ingredients that are a part of the product.

In 2009, tests on ingredients and final cosmetic products are stopped, except for tests measuring long term toxicity effects.

Finally, in 2013, Europe signs a new law which, this time around, definitively bans “any cosmetic product whose final product and ingredients have been tested on animals”. This ban also affects imported products.

Why is it important in the import of my products in Europe?

As you have caught on, since July 2013, it is absolutely illegal to sell products that have been tested on animals, within the European territory.

Thus, displaying a Cruelty-Free logo on a cosmetic product destined to be sold in Europe can imply that other products do not respect this criterion. Therefore, you should pay special attention to the designations appearing on your cosmetics’ packaging in order to avoid “false claims”.

Still, this matter is opened to interpretation and, until there is an official EU court case explicitly stating that the use of the logo is forbidden in Europe, it is up to the brands to decide whether the Cruelty-Free logo should appear on the products or not.

Want to know more about cosmetic regulation?

For more information on your cosmetic products' compliance, do not hesitate to contact our expert M. Sylvain De Backer by phone at: +33 1 83 64 20 54 for Europe, or +1 (778) 234 1607 for North America or send an email to [email protected]

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