What does it mean to be “Cruelty-free”?

SoGa Artisan Soaperie encourages consumers to make conscientious choices about the personal care products they buy. Consumers who care about animals can make humane decisions that benefit laboratory animals.

What is Cruelty-Free?
Consumers need to be aware that labels that read “cruelty-free” and “not tested on animals” may not always mean what we think. As no government agency currently defines these terms, nor sets standards for their usage, it is left to each company to determine what its “cruelty-free” label means.

At SoGa, we follow the guidelines set by the CCIC’s Leaping Bunny Program – neither the ingredients nor the products have been tested on animals after our certification date of January 14, 2014 and will not be tested on animals in the future.

The CCIC’s Leaping Bunny Program and Logo
The Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics’ (CCIC) Leaping Bunny Programmaintains a single, comprehensive standard for cruelty-free labeling. This makes it easier for consumers to shop for products manufactured without the use of animal testing.  The Leaping Bunny Program gives consumers assurance that products they are buying have met the most rigorous cruelty-free standards as licensees are required to sign a pledge not to test on animals during any stage of product development. The company’s ingredient suppliers make the same pledge, assuring that the entire product is free from animal testing.  CCIC also commissions on-site audits to assess licensees’ and suppliers claims of a “no animal testing” manufacturing policy.  In 2014, SoGa Artisan Soaperie became a member of the CCIC and a supporter of the Leaping Bunny Program. To encourage more companies to sign on to the Leaping Bunny Program, consumers are urged to pledge to purchase cruelty-free products to save animals from cruel and unnecessary testing.

Product Safety Testing – A Brief Background
In 1933, at least 17 American women were blinded by, and one died of, complications resulting from the use of Lash Lure, a new mascara. At that time no laws or regulations governed the safety of consumer products. Manufacturers were free to market almost anything.

As a result of this and other tragic incidents related to untested products, the U.S. Congress passed the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938, requiring that food, drugs, and cosmetics be verified as safe for human use before they could be sold.  Following this, animals came into widespread use as the mechanism for testing the safety of personal care products in the U.S. This was based on the premise that animals are similar enough to people to be used as models for human response.

Alternatives to Animals in Product Safety Testing
There has been much success in the development and use of alternatives to animal testing within the arena of personal care and household products.  Within the last three decades, many manufacturers have dramatically reduced their reliance on animal use for this purpose.  It is estimated that the number of animals used to test the safety of personal care products might be less than 5% of all animals used in U.S. laboratories – a nearly 90% reduction since 1980.

SoGa is proud to support the work by the CCIC and their commitment to cruelty-free cosmetics.

~Louise