Cruelty-Free Makeup: What It Means to Be a Cruelty-Free Brand

Someone putting concealer on a woman

Many makeup brands are now cruelty-free, thanks to the growing demand to stop animal testing. People are choosing to spend their money on products made by companies that care about animals. 

However, some people may be confused about what cruelty-free really means or how they can tell if a product was tested on animals or not. Cruelty-free brands still have a process to ensure their products are safe for use.

At HIDE, all of our products are cruelty-free. We want you to know everything there is to know about cruelty-free products, such as how they are tested and why people are adamant about purchasing them. 

What Does Cruelty-Free Mean?

A cruelty-free product has never been tested on animals. None of the ingredients in the product have been tested on animals either. This is what it means to be 100% cruelty-free.  

Animal Testing In the United States

There are over 26 million animals used for testing every year in the United States. Many companies and suppliers use animals for scientific and commercial testing purposes. They’re used to make sure beauty products, medical treatments, and medications are safe for people to use. 

People have been testing on animals for thousands of years. The early history of animal testing dates all the way back to 500 BC. There have been descriptions of live animal dissection found in ancient Greek writings. Famous physician-scientists, like Aristotle, conducted experiments on animals to understand how living organisms function. 

Aristotle thought that animals' lack of intelligence meant that any concept of injustice did not apply to them. His successor, Theophrastus, would later argue that since animals can feel pain, like humans, hurting them was wrong.

In present times, some companies claim animal testing is the only way to tell if something is safe. Proponents of animal testing also claim that strict regulations stop the mistreatment of animals in these laboratories. 

On the other hand, those against animal testing say it's inhumane and cruel to experiment on animals. There are several alternative methods researchers can use to ensure a product is safe and effective. People against animal testing also say that since animals are so different than humans, the results are irrelevant. 

At HIDE, we are confident that our products are safe and effective without the need for animal testing. However, all brands do not feel the same way. If purchasing cruelty-free products is important to you, you may have to do a little research before you buy. 

How to Tell If a Company Is Cruelty-Free

Most products will be labeled as cruelty-free. Others will say things like their products are cruelty-free except where required by law. In some countries, like China, the law requires that all products are tested on animals. Companies that test on animals, even if just in some cases, are not considered cruelty-free. However, some brands will still label themselves as cruelty-free even when they're not.

These are the criteria that a company needs to meet to truly be cruelty-free: 

  • Products are not tested on animals
  • The ingredients in the products have not been tested on animals
  • The company does not have a third party doing their animal testing for them 
  • You can't find their products on sale in mainland China
  • The raw materials they get from the suppliers are not tested on animals

Products can be cruelty-free, but that doesn't necessarily make them vegan. The term "cruelty-free" only means the product has not undergone animal testing. Often, people mix up the two and think they are buying a cruelty-free product when in actuality, it may have been tested on animals. 

What Does Vegan Mean?

Vegan beauty products do not contain any animal ingredients or animal by-products. Many animal-based ingredients are in skincare and cosmetics. You can find materials such as honey, beeswax, collagen, elastin, and more. All of these ingredients mean that the product is not vegan. 

Another common ingredient that is not vegan is lanolin. It’s produced by sheep to keep their wool soft. Sheep have to be sheared, and when they are, the wool is taken, and the lanolin is taken out for use. It is a waxy substance that many companies use in moisturizers, hair products, and soaps. 

Some people don't mind lanolin since sheep aren't technically harmed in the harvesting process. However, it does mean that products with lanolin are not vegan.

Vegan beauty companies replace these animal-derived products with different plants and minerals. However, just because a company is vegan does not mean its products are natural or organic. 

To ensure the product is vegan and there are no harmful ingredients, it is best to check the ingredient list. If you have sensitive skin, consider testing the product on a small skin area to see if you have a reaction. 

HIDE's products are all vegan and cruelty-free. We stand behind the cause to eradicate cruelty to animals. However, some brands use vegan as a term to mean plant-based but still test on animals. Just like with cruelty-free products, you may need to do a little research to ensure the product is vegan. 

How Cruelty-Free Products Are Tested

There are many non-animal methods for all different kinds of testing that still keep people safe. Here are some of the ways products can be tested to ensure they are safe: 

  • Human Tissues: Human tissue is donated for testing. Some consider it a more relevant way of studying products for humans than animal testing. Since animal tissue is not quite the same, actual human tissue can be more accurate with results. 
  • Computer Models: There are computer programs that can replicate aspects of the human body. These programs are used for a variety of different virtual experiments. 
  • Volunteer Studies: In many cases, companies can simply test their products on human volunteers. 

Several studies have shown that non-animal testing methods are better than animal testing. For example, skin allergy tests on rodents were only able to anticipate reactions in humans 72% to 82% of the time. Alternative methods were able to predict how the human body would react with 90% accuracy.

HIDE products have been proven safe to use and work wonders. HIDE Premium Concealer can cover anything from tattoos to blemishes. It is ultra-lightweight so that you can wear it all day and it has an undetectable finish. It has never been tested on animals and has vegan ingredients. You cannot say the same for most other concealers on the market. 

Going Cruelty-Free

Going cruelty-free is something that many people are doing more and more. Many brands are no longer testing on animals and resort to other methods to ensure their products are safe for use. 

While some products are cruelty-free, they may not necessarily be vegan. For a product to be vegan, it can't have any ingredients derived from animals. Some don't consider a product truly cruelty-free if they aren't also vegan, but the two terms are not interchangeable.  

HIDE offers premium products that are vegan and cruelty-free. Even though there are no animal products, our foundation and concealers are very effective. They are safe for use, thanks to alternative testing.



Cruelty-Free Makeup: A Complete Guide to Ethical and Vegan Cosmetics | Unsustainable Magazine

History of Animal Testing | ProCon

Lanolin: What It Is, How It Works, Uses, Benefits | Very Well Health

Alternatives to animal testing | Cruelty-Free International