Cosmetics testing on animals is a few steps closer to becoming a practice of the past. The Canadian Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act (Bill S-214) has passed the Senate and will now move forward to the House of Commons for final approval before becoming law. This measure, which is an amendment to the country’s Food and Drugs Act, would prohibit cosmetic animal testing and the sale of cosmetics developed or manufactured using animal testing. If the law is passed, Canada would become the 39th country to prohibit cosmetics testing on animals. Countries with bans currently in place include all nations within the European Union, Australia, India, and Israel.
China, one of the world’s largest markets for health and beauty products, has recently lifted its legal requirement for post-market animal testing of cosmetics. This means that finished products such as nail polish, soap, or sunscreen will no longer have to be tested on animals after entering the Chinese markets. However, lifting of the legal requirement is not the same as a ban: Products can still be taken from the shelf for testing at any time. Pre-market testing—the testing of products before they enter the Chinese market—is still required for imported products, but not for products made in China.