Salon Sanitation

No Animals Allowed

Animals have no business in the salon, and for some beauty manufacturers, they have no business in research laboratories, either.

Animals have no business in the salon, and for some beauty manufactures, they have no business in research laboratories, either. But according to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), a Norfolk, va-based non-profit animal protection organization, some manufacturers of cosmetics and household products still conduct “painful and useless” tests on live animals, even though they are nor required.

To make consumers aware of those companies that do not test their products on animals. PETA began publishing the “Caring Consumer Cruelty-Free Shopping Guide” twice a year, which is free to members as well as non-members. Some professional nail product manufacturers, including Amoresse Laboratories, OPI Products, and Orly international are listed in the guide. What does it mean when a company is listed as cruelty-free? PETA defines it as a company that does not conduct or commission any animal test on its products, formulations, and ingredients. It does not, however, reflect the use of animal ingredients in products says Robyn Wesley, PETA’s cruelty-free product campaign coordinator, Companies listed in the guide have given PETA a signed Statement of Assurance or a letter stating their position animal testing. (Companies not listed may follow cruelty-free procedures, but because they have not sent PETA a letter or Statement of Assurance, they are not included in the guide.) The validity of a company’s statement that it does not test on animals is based strictly on an honor system, says Wesley.

“We don’t do any animal testing on our products and I feel that this practice should have ended a long time ago.” says Gino Forlin, president of Amoresse Laoratories. The company has been in PETA’s guide for about six years. “We test our products on humans only, therefore we make sure that the ingredients we use are already deemed as safe,” he says.

Says Suzi Weiss-Fischman, executive vice president of OPI, “OPI has always taken its cues from the wants and needs of the professional salon even when it comes to formulating and testing products. Because of the humanitarian concerns surrounding animal testing OPI does not and never has used animals in any product development of production.”

Sherri Greene, marketing manager of Orly International says, “Our products have been proven to be safe for many years without being tested on animals. There are other means to test product safety.”

Although Creative Nail Design is not listed in the guide, the company has never tested its products on animals, says Doug Schoon, director of R&D. “When we come out with a new product, we conduct risk evaluations of ingredients and determine which ones are low risk, meaning safe. We look at toxicity profiles, MSDS, and medical reports,” he says. To see how a product works and whether or not it causes any adverse reactions, Creative’s lab uses human test subjects.

Seche International also limits its testing to human subjects, says education coordinator Christy Bannister. “When people call and I tell them they’re formaklehyde-free and cruelty-free, I get more of a response from the fact that we don’t test on animals and that our products don’t contain any animal by-products,” says Bannister.

Alternatives for animal testing include human skin patch tests, tests using tissue cultures, and computer models, says PETA. Manufacturers can also consult data obtained from previous human experience and use ingredients from the FDA’s lengthy “Generally Recognized As Safe” list.

PETA’s “Caring Consumer Cruelty-Free Shopping Guide” can be obtained by calling (757) 622-7382.

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