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 There is great news for animal advocates out there. The European Union has announced that they have passed legislation that will effectively ban of the sale, import, or manufacture of any and all cosmetics that have been tested on animals. The ban is set to take effect starting March 11 of 2013. Anyone who wants to sell cosmetics, including toiletries such as toothpaste, deodorant, and soap, in Europe must ensure that there are no ingredients anywhere in the product that have been tested on animals. This is a HUGE breakthrough for animal rights activists and, of course, the animals we fight to protect.

     
        This victory has been the culmination of a two decade long effort by the “Cruelty Free International” charity foundation and the cruelty-free retailer “The Body Shop”. Together they have launched an international campaign to end animal testing and promote cruelty-free products. So far 55 countries have signed a pledge in support of the ban. The organization has indicated that one of their next main targets is China, which still requires such animal tests for cosmetic products. Of course, there is still a large amount of testing in America as well. However, there is a lot of hope for the United States because the Food and Drug Administration does not require product testing on animals.
        It is difficult to get a clear answer as to how many animals are used in cosmetic tests each year because there is very little regulation of such things and most countries do not have laws requiring corporations or experimenters to keep track of the number of animals used. Modest estimates are in the hundreds of thousands worldwide every year; thousands die a year in the United States alone. The clearest estimates I could find were for all lab animals used for cosmetics, medicine, and all other products, which is between 14 and 70 million animals worldwide in any given year. Cats, dogs, mice, rats, and rabbits are often used to test the irritant level and toxicity of cosmetic products through painful exposure experiments.
         All of the experiments are cruel, painful, and unnecessary. For example, they typically drip chemicals into the eyes of rabbits to test a product’s sensitivity. This can cause soreness, swelling, bleeding from the eyes, and blindness. It is also common practice to manually pump substances into the lungs or stomachs of dogs, cats, rats, and other animals until the animals die or the experimenters are otherwise satisfied with the experiment. That test is called “Acute oral toxicity” testing, and the animals in this experiment who do not die often suffer from seizures, paralysis, diarrhea, and/or bleeding from the mouth or throat. The “Acute dermal toxicity” test is when they apply a substance to the shaved skin of a rat, guinea pig, or rabbit, and cover it to prevent the animal from licking the chemicals off. Both the Acute oral and the acute dermal tests are designed to figure out the amount of substance needed to kill at least half of the exposed animals within two weeks’ time. Over 50% of all animals used in cosmetic tests die within three weeks.

        If the animals do not die in any given experiment, they are either euthanized or reused in the next experiment. The list of experiments (usually involving forced inhalation or consumption of dangerous substances) goes on and on. They even expose pregnant animals to various chemicals to test for birth defect. These are pointless, unnecessary tests that really prove nothing about the effect a product will have on a person. Animals are simply too different than humans for animal tests to be practically applicable. There is no logical reason for these animals to suffer for our vanity and I am so glad that Europe has made this leap in their part to end the madness and I too hope the world will follow suit.
        There are literally dozens of tests now available that can usually cheaper and always more dependable than the results of animal tests. Companies like EpiSkin, EpiDerm, and SkinEThic have developed the technology of artificial human skin. We can test substances on human blood given by volunteers for also. “The Bovine Corneal Opacity and Permeability Test” and “Isolated Chicken Eye Test” use eyes of slaughtered animals from the meat industry to test the potential irritation a product could cause to eyes. This not only saves countless rats, rabbits, and guinea pigs, but also makes good use of what otherwise would go to waste.
        The Chief Executive of Cruelty Free International, Michelle Thew, said of the European animal testing ban, “This is truly an historic event and the culmination of over 20 years of campaigning. Now we will apply our determination and vision on a global stage to ensure that the rest of the world follows this lead.” This is a controversial topic, but one that does not get a lot of attention in the news. Animals are easy to ignore because they do not talk, but they matter. Many people cannot bear to face the reality because it is so ugly, but that means that you care enough to do something about it.        
        You can get involved with the fight in many ways; sign petitions and pledges, email your congressmen for stricter animal protection legislation, and make sure to buy cruelty free products. Many products say “cruelty free” on the back, but you can also visit the Human Society website to get a free list of animal safe products as well as brands of which to stay clear. These companies will reject animal testing if we genuinely reject THEM for it. Remember, you vote with your money, so please be mindful of your choices. These animals cannot fight for themselves; we are the only ones who can make this vital change…a necessary change, a worthy change, and relatively easy change to make.

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worked cited:

http://www.humanesociety.org/...
http://www.nydailynews.com/...
http://www.ecorazzi.com/...
http://alttox.org/...
http://www.humanesociety.org/...
http://www.dosomething.org/...
http://www.fda.gov/...

Poll

Do you support bans of cosmetic testing on animals

71%35 votes
12%6 votes
8%4 votes
4%2 votes
4%2 votes

| 49 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (20+ / 0-)

    Indifference is the most dangerous thing in the world. It is the fertilizer on which evil feeds and, without it, evil has no power. ~The Lady Rhiannon

    by ladyrhiannon824 on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 02:41:38 PM PST

  •  A couple of your links are bad (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Flying Goat

    might want to check the first two.

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 03:19:34 PM PST

  •  Tipped and recced... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZenTrainer, kurt

    I agree that testing in animals absolutely should be minimized to every possible extent, and is cruel and inhumane, and 50% dying within 3 weeks is nowhere near acceptable.  While it can be made less cruel and inhumane, the very nature of testing things on animals dictates that it cannot truly be made otherwise.

    Heavy animal testing on cosmetic development particularly angers me because...well...  it's just cosmetics, which are not necessary to live a normal life (Excluding people with seriously disfiguring conditions, of course).

    But is it completely unnecessary?  While animals are not perfect models for human reactions to cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, they're not completely unrelated, either.

    (Disclaimer:  I have a brother who's a genetics professor and studies limb development at a public university.  He uses mice, lizards, and snakes with disabled / enabled genes related to limb development for this purpose, something that I'd never be comfortable doing myself.  Is it wrong?  Is the research worth the cost?  Answers to both of those are beyond me).

    •  For me it is wrong. I think what may be slowing (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Flying Goat, ladyrhiannon824, splashy

      down progress in so many medical areas is testing on animals which just doesn't relate to testing on humans.

      So for me ethically it is way wrong, and scientifically it just doesn't make sense.

      Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature.

      by ZenTrainer on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 08:39:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Can't speak from a medical perspective, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        and not from a terribly well informed scientific one, but we've learned a lot about how proteins work from work that could not be replicated in humans.  Learning where certain genes are activated, and and in what phases of embryonic development, for example, is not something you could do with humans.

  •  Error (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kurt

    Your diary:

    The European Union has announced that they have passed legislation that will effectively ban of the sale, import, or manufacture of any and all cosmetics that have been tested on animals
    NYDaily News:
    The European Union will ban the import and sale of animal-tested cosmetic products (including ingredients) for member states from March 11; from this date onwards anyone selling new cosmetic products and ingredients in the EU will not be allowed to test them on animals anywhere in the world.

    Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/...

    The regulations therefore allow ingredients and cosmetics that have previously been tested on animals to be imported. This is a minor linguistic difference but an important one in terms of what can be sold.

    EU legislation has to be approved by the European Parliament, the respective Council of Ministers and the Commission. From what I can deduce from the NYDailyNews report, the first two had already agreed the ban and this confirms those earlier decisions. (If the Commission or Council disagreed with the Parliament's bill, there would be a "trilogue" to resolve the differences, a bit like joint committees of the House and Senate in Congress.

    "Who stood against President Obama in 2012?" - The trivia question nobody can answer.

    by Lib Dem FoP on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 07:16:08 PM PST

  •  One small step for mankind, one small step for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ladyrhiannon824

    humanity. Step by step we may get there yet.

    Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature.

    by ZenTrainer on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 08:35:41 PM PST

  •  If animal testing is outlawed? (0+ / 0-)

    How will safety testing occur?  I don't like animal testing but recognize its necessary to assure that pharmaceuticals are safe and effective.  As for cosmetics, how will we know that specific new compounds are safe and what their effects on the body are.  

    Animal testing is expensive enough that researchers AFAK avoid it whenever possible for that reason.  

    Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism the roles are reversed.

    by DavidMS on Sat Feb 02, 2013 at 11:21:11 PM PST

    •  Animal testing (0+ / 0-)

      Is anything but necessary. That is a huge myth. It is more cost effective and and more accurate to use alternative methods of testing, such as synthetic skin, computer generation, using human blood samples, left over from the meat industry and dozens more options that are out there for both cosmetic and medical testing. There are literally NO animal tests that are truly necessary.

      Indifference is the most dangerous thing in the world. It is the fertilizer on which evil feeds and, without it, evil has no power. ~The Lady Rhiannon

      by ladyrhiannon824 on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 09:55:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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