China To End Mandatory Pre-Market Animal Testing

by Georgia

Looks like next year will be our year! Recently, China announced they will be removing the mandatory pre-market animal testing for foreign cosmetics as of 1st January 2021, starting the year off with a bang! The recent development that has been hailed as one of the most exciting in recent years by animal rights organisations around the globe. 

The Humane Society International released a statement saying; 

“Effective January 1st 2021, imported ordinary cosmetics, such as shampoo, blusher, mascara and perfume will no longer have to be animal tested for eye and skin irritation in Chinese laboratories.”

Although, the plan was to have the new regulations enacted in April 2020, as announced by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the end of 2019, due to COVID-19 – animal testing was pushed from the agenda.

For years, the country has enacted compulsory animal testing on all imported ‘ordinary’ cosmetics, items that sit in our make-up bags. In China, beauty products are separated into two distinct categories; non-special – (make-up, moisturisers, shampoo) and special (products with a more scientific function eg. sunblock). 

Let’s talk about the testing process;

Typically beauty products are all tested, in one way or another – before they reach our makeup bags – so that we, as consumers, know it’s safe. Originally all tests were carried out on animals, however with breakthroughs in the industry scientists have been able to test products on human tissue grown in Petri dishes. Although relatively new, this type of testing has existed since 1990. 

For imported non-special beauty products, the ban will mean these products won’t be tested on animals, while imported special products will still require pre-market animal testing, in line with the regulations for Chinese-made cosmetics. 

Post-market testing is exempt from the new regulations, meaning that products can still be pulled from shelves and tested on animals regardless of their origin. 

For the beauty industry as a whole, it is a massive win. Although animal testing is still very much prevalent in China, it’s a huge step for the country, who hopefully will step away from animal testing altogether.  

Words: Georgia Rose                                                                                                                                               Images: Pinterest 

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