Does Cetaphil Test on Animals?

Cetaphil is a well-known skincare brand that sells gently formulated face and body products. You will be familiar with the brand as it is common to see in drugstores and grocery stores but you may not be aware of where the company stands when it comes to animal welfare.

For vegans and those concerned with animal welfare, any self-care products must be certified as cruelty-free.

As many people need to know of Cetaphil being cruelty-free and vegan we take a look at their policy and what they advise in regards to animal welfare. 

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What is cruelty-free?

There are many interpretations of the term “cruelty-free” especially from people in the health and beauty industry, which have come under considerable scrutiny in the past. You will often see words like organic, green, and eco-friendly on health and beauty products that help paint the picture of an ethical and friendly brand.

The reality, however, is that many health and beauty products are not as ethical as they seem unless a company is certified as cruelty-free.

While the definition of cruelty-free will vary from country to country, depending on procedures and laws, most animal rights charities and organizations, such as PETA define cruelty-free an ethos by a brand that does not allow or promote testing on animals for any reason nor do they make a profit at the expense of animals.

It is also important to note that there may be some beauty products that are not necessarily tested on animals but use ingredients made up of animal products, which means that are not vegan-friendly. 

What does Galderma say?

Galderma is the company that develops and produce Cetaphil products and they state the below on their website:

“As a responsible corporate citizen, animal welfare is also a key priority for the company. For this reason, Galderma does not test Cetaphil products or ingredients used in Cetaphil on animals at any stage of our product innovation, development or manufacturing processes.”

They go on to say 

“Galderma has been utilizing industry-recognized, non-animal testing methodologies on its Cetaphil brand even before regulations prohibiting animal testing on cosmetics came into force in various countries.

These efforts are part of our commitment to ensuring the safety of our products, the wellbeing of our consumers, and our contribution to society at large.”

From these statements, it is believed that Cetaphil products are cruelty-free and vegan. 

Animal Testing

While Cetaphil is believed to be cruelty-free and it is stated on their website, the reality is that the lines are blurred and we cannot be confident that Cetaphil does not test on animals.

To be certified as cruelty-free, a brand should not carry out any animal testing, this includes products that are made on-site by the company itself or by a third-party company that provides ingredients for another brand.

It needs to be clear that at every stage of the manufacturing process there is no harm caused to animals.

When it comes to scrutinizing the various stages of the manufacturing process Cetaphil does not give a definitive answer, which means that vegans and animal rights campaigners cannot be sure that it is a cruelty-free company. 

From the below statement we can see that while the company believes they are ethical they do have to adhere to laws in different countries that may require some animal testing:

“Per Galderma policy, we do not test Cetaphil products on animals except if required by law.

Specifically, we are required by law to submit Cetaphil products for animal testing to import Cetaphil into the People’s Republic of China (i.e., Mainland China). This is no different than other similarly situated companies.”

Animal testing is required by law

China requires animal testing by law and some other countries, such as Russia, test on animals in certain instances. Many other countries advocate cruelty-free products but do not necessarily make them illegal.

In many countries, such as EU countries, New Zealand and Australia, animal testing is prohibited. Even though animal testing is prohibited income countries it does not mean that they cannot sell products that have been tested on animals.

When it comes to using ingredients used in products, a brand may use items that have been tested on animals in another country, for example. 

Is Cetaphil certified cruelty-free? 

Organizations that certify products and brands as being cruelty-free have not done so with Cetaphil as it does not meet the required standards, due to the issues around animal testing laws worldwide 

Is Cetaphil vegan?

While Cetaphil offers vegan products fact that they are not certified as cruelty-free and cannot guarantee that all products have not been tested on animals. As there is no guarantee that products have not been tested in animals we cannot say they are vegan.

As Cetaphil and their sister companies allow some of the ingredients to be tested on animals and they make a profit from products that have been tested on animals no vegan would believe them to be ethical. 

Determining if brands like Cetaphil are cruelty-free or not

Like Cetaphil and their sister company Galderma, many brands will not be forthright with all f the information on animal testing. While openly stating that they are cruelly free they may have elements of the manufacturing process that causes harm to animals.

Some brands will have small print on their website as to whether or not they or any third part company tests on animals and if there is even one process that tests on animals then they should not be declaring themselves cruelty-free. 

Cetaphil in China?

The fact that Cetaphil state that they are cruelty-free yet they need to abide by the laws of each country infer that they perhaps sell products that have been tested on animals.

When we look into whether or not China sells Cetaphil products we see that they do indeed have a market there which means that they, along with their sister company Galderma are not cruelty-free manufacturers which they should be clear about on their website.

As China has rules and laws in place when it comes to products being tested on animals it is easy to see why some companies fall foul of their statement that they are cruelty-free. That said, there are many companies that action will not sell in China as they want to be 100% cruelty-free and will not test on animals on any occasion.

If you know a brand is sold in China you can look online to see a full list of ingredients and try to investigate whether an ingredient is not required to be tested on animals by law as you may be able to continue using. 

Conclusion—Cetaphil tests on animals and is not Cruelty-Free

The decision to sell in China means that despite their claims to be cruelty-free Cetaphil does test on animals. This decision also means that the brand is not vegan but some vegetarians may consider using the brand if animal welfare is not on the top of their list of priorities.

Vegans may be confused at this as some Cetaphil products are advertised as vegan-friendly but this is the product itself as opposed to the general manufacturing processes the company carries out.

Cetaphil has said that they want to make sure that they produce more ethical and vegan products but there is work to be done before they can say for certain that their products are not tested on animals. 

Cruelty-free Alternatives

If you a fan of Cetaphil but feel that the knowledge that they test on animals is alarming, there are great alternatives that do not test on animals. Skincare brands that are cruelty-free and have certified status that they do not test on animals and/or do not sell to the Chinese market are:

Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel - Gentle-Foaming Face Wash Gel for Women and Men - Leaves Skin Feeling Smooth And Clean
Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel - Gentle-Foaming Face Wash Gel for Women and Men - Leaves Skin Feeling Smooth And Clean
Immediately removes dirt, impurities and oil; Helps calm your skin without irritation and dryness
$68.00 Amazon Prime
Mario Badescu Drying Lotion for All Skin Types| Blemish Spot Treatment with Salicylic Acid and Sulfur | Dries Surface Blemishes | 1 Fl Oz
Mario Badescu Drying Lotion for All Skin Types| Blemish Spot Treatment with Salicylic Acid and Sulfur | Dries Surface Blemishes | 1 Fl Oz
[CLARIFYING, BI-PHASE NIGHTTIME SOLUTION] for all skin types; [DRIES SURFACE BLEMISHES] by drawing out impurities from targeted spots
$18.00 Amazon Prime

It is worth noting that although China requires testing on animals by law there will be some ingredients or products that are exempt from testing so you may need to delve deeper to see if they are cruelty-free or not as there may be a chance that it is sold in China but is not tested on animals.

Many of these brands are both cruelty-free and have vegan options for people who want to live a truly vegan lifestyle. 

If you are confused as to whether or not brands are cruelty-free or not you should always read the small print on the website, check on the policies relating to Chinese (and other countries that require animal testing ) law, and also check on the small print of the ingredients contained in products, even if they say they are vegan.

Some brands to avoid as they are well-known to test on animals include Benefit, Estee Lauder, Nars, Maybelline, Origins, Clinique, and 0.P.I.

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