Survey: Most Americans Support Ban on Cosmetics Testing on Animals

The Physicians Committee
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NEWS RELEASE December 28, 2011
Survey: Most Americans Support Ban on Cosmetics Testing on Animals
Kristie Sullivan, M.P.H.

Results Show Rising Demand for Cruelty-Free Personal-Care Products

WASHINGTON—Sixty-one percent of Americans believe that companies should not be allowed to test makeup, shaving cream, and other cosmetics and personal care products on animals. And 72 percent say that testing cosmetics on animals is unethical, according to an independent survey commissioned by the nonprofit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). 

Some high-profile American companies, including Bath and Body Works, The Body Shop, and Aveda, have stopped testing their products on animals, but others continue to subject tens of thousands of rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, and rats each year to painful tests, including crude procedures in which irritating substances are placed in the eyes of the animals. Nonanimal testing methods are widely available, and the European Union banned animal tests for cosmetics and personal products in 2009.

“More Americans than ever are demanding cruelty-free products,” says Nancy Beck, Ph.D., a PCRM scientific and policy adviser and author of the report, More Than a Makeup Trend. “This survey suggests that consumers are fed up with delays in developing and implementing nonanimal testing methods. Companies that continue testing their products on animals are putting their profits and reputations at risk.”

Key Survey Findings:

  • 72 percent of respondents agreed that testing cosmetics on animals is unethical.
  • 78 percent agreed that the development of alternatives to animal testing for cosmetics testing is important.
  • 61 percent said cosmetics and personal care product companies should not be allowed to test products on animals.
  • 58 percent said they would purchase cruelty-free personal care products.

“More Than a Makeup Trend” is based on random telephone surveys conducted by ORC International of Princeton, N.J., on behalf of PCRM, in September 2011.

For a copy of the report or an interview with Dr. Beck, please contact Dania DePas at 202-527-7382 or ddepas@pcrm.org.

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.