Cosmetics Regulation Reform in the United States
CAMPAIGN UPDATE: Representative Jim Moran (VA) introduced a landmark bill to ban the testing of cosmetics on animals. PCRM supports this bill and is continuing to monitor all U.S. cosmetics legislative efforts and meet with allies and congressional staff.
In March 2014, Representative Jim Moran (VA) introduced a landmark bill, the Humane Cosmetics Act (H.R. 4148), to ban the testing of cosmetics on animals. This historic legislation would not only end animal testing for cosmetics within the United States but also prohibit the sale of products that have been tested elsewhere—forcing other countries we do business with to stop testing as well.
Specifically, the bill would:
- within one year of enactment, prohibit the testing of cosmetic ingredients and final products on animals in the US
- prohibit the export and import of animal tested cosmetics within three years of enactment
This important bill would also put the United States on the same footing as its economic competitors. As it is, the United States is behind the times. The European Union has banned both cosmetic testing and the sale of cosmetics tested on animals—requiring even American companies to stop testing on animals if they want to sell to European customers. India, Israel, and parts of Brazil have followed in the EU's footsteps. Australia has also introduced a similar ban.
However, earlier in the congressional session, the House of Representatives, with the goal of improving cosmetics safety and regulation, introduced H.R. 1385 Safe Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act of 2013. But this well-intentioned bill has serious flaws, and would essentially mandate animal testing.
To be effective, new regulations for cosmetics must embrace efficient cell- and computer-based testing and assessment strategies. Otherwise, the legislation could lead to significant increases in misleading and inhumane animal testing. To learn more, read our background paper on cosmetics regulation and safety testing and the Safe Cosmetics Act FAQ.
It is time to abandon this inhumane and costly practice, and to adopt more ethical, efficient, and cost-effective nonanimal testing methods that are already widely available.