Is Estée Lauder cruelty-free?

Is Estée Lauder cruelty-free?

I was not going to tackle Estée Lauder as yet. Since last summer there was news that Estée Lauder partnering with Cruelty Free International to work towards a cruelty-free world, I thought I will tackle this brand next year. The current status of Estée Lauder is confusing some people. So I thought of clarifying whether right now they are cruelty-free. In case it really changes next year, then I will update this post. So let’s start.

Does Estée Lauder test on animals?

  • More than 30 years ago, The Estée Lauder Companies was one of the first cosmetics companies to eliminate animal testing as a method of determining cosmetic product safety. We don’t test our products on animals and we don’t ask others to test for us. We acknowledge our brands are sold in countries where animal testing on cosmetics or cosmetic ingredients is required by law.

Estée Lauder states that it has not been testing on animals for over 30 years. They were pioneers in this decision and also they don’t ask others to test on their behalf. However, they admit that they are selling in countries which legally require animal testing. In these countries usually, it’s the authorities that test on animals. However, Estée Lauder did not clarify who tests on animals in this case. It could be that there are instances that they test on animals for the authority. So since it’s not clarified, it would be safer to say that Estée Lauder tests on animals.

Is Estée Lauder owned by a parent that is not cruelty-free?

Estée Lauder is a parent company. However, it owns some brands which are cruelty-free. So maybe there is a bit of hope that next year Estée Lauder would go back to being cruelty-free.

Is Estée Lauder certified cruelty-free?

Estée Lauder has partnered with Cruelty Free International but is not yet certified cruelty-free by this organisation. However, Estée Lauder is on the animal testing brands list on the PETA website.

Is Estée Lauder cruelty-free?

Since they are saying that they are selling in countries which require animal testing, it automatically means that Estée Lauder is not cruelty-free. However, let’s say for some reason we did not read that statement and assess it from another perspective.

Does Estée Lauder sell in Mainland China?

As usual, I went to the Estée Lauder website and from their footer, I switched the country to China. It redirects to Estée Lauder’s China website with a Shanghai i.e. Mainland China company registration. So yes, Estée Lauder does sell in Mainland China. However, let’s not jump into conclusions just yet.

Are Estée Lauder products in Mainland China are cosmetics?

In case you did not know soaps, toothpaste and oral cleansers are not considered to be cosmetics in China. These are totally exempt from animal testing. Estée Lauder, however, is selling skincare products, makeup and perfumes which are cosmetics for China and are at risk of animal testing.

So, unfortunately, these last two questions proof original my assessment that Estée Lauder is not cruelty-free.

Which brands should I support instead?

If you are looking for a brand who is serious about their anti-animal-testing policy. Check my list of brands that are against animal testing.


Source: Estée Lauder Animal Testing Policy as at 16/12/2019 and Estée Lauder Mainland China website

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(a.k.a. Fiona Vella) Malta-born blogger. I have been blogging during these last 6 years on my cruelty-free lifestyle including recipes, beauty and makeup products that I discover, receive, buy and try.