PCRM Asks Cosmetics Companies to Come Clean About Animal Testing
Thousands of rabbits suffer excruciating skin irritation and corrosion tests for cosmetic products and their ingredients each year. PCRM’s new Come Clean campaign asks companies to reveal whether they perform these tests, so PCRM scientists can help them transition to superior, cruelty-free test methods.
PCRM scientists will advise companies that use animal tests on how to integrate nonanimal methods into their programs to provide safer products for humans and to spare animals from suffering.
Skin irritation and corrosion tests involve placing chemicals on an animal’s skin to test for rash, inflammation, lesions, or other signs of skin damage. A chemical is applied to the shaved, bare skin of a restrained rabbit and left for four hours. The skin is then observed for up to 14 days for irritation, which is reversible damage, or corrosion, which is irreversible damage.
Each species reacts differently to substances, so animal tests do not accurately predict how a chemical will affect human skin. Nonanimal test methods are both cruelty-free and more accurate. Reconstructed human skin models can mimic the potential dangers a new cosmetic or personal care product might pose to human skin.
An independent survey PCRM commissioned last year found that 61 percent of Americans believe that companies should not be allowed to test cosmetics and personal care products on animals. Seventy-two percent said that testing cosmetics on animals is unethical.
See the Come Clean infographic and learn more about ending cosmetics animal testing at PCRM.org/ComeClean.