The Cruelty Free movement has taken big steps the past couple of years, with the topic being discussed more openly and more people choosing not to use brands that still test of animals.
Yet, there is still one topic that is still hotly contested over. Should we use make-up brands that, otherwise, don’t test on animals, but still sell in China?
It is law in China that all foreign cosmetic companies must test on animals before being sold in Chinese stores. Meaning, that there is no way that a company who has products in China are completely cruelty free.
So why sell in China? Unfortunately, that option seems non-negotiable to some companies these days. China is a huge market, and every company from make-up to movies wants to tap into the money that comes with that.
At first it might seem harmless, and it’s easy to argue that these companies are, after all, companies that need to make a profit. Many take the approach that, as long as their eye shadow palette wasn’t tested on an innocent rabbit, then that’s okay.
Unfortunately, I believe there’s a darker side to that; and it’s all to do with the movement itself.
Although most don’t believe it, public opinion matters a lot. If people voice that they don’t buy certain brands because they test on animals, big corporations notice. They don’t want to lose out on the money, so they have to start making steps to becoming cruelty free.
Yet, for some companies it isn’t as simple as that. For one, they might be owned by a parent company that still tests on animals. This would mean that, even if they stopped the testing, some of their money is ultimately going to places that still test. The other problem? They want to tap into that sweet Chinese market.
So these companies, that are either owned by corporations that still test, or want to sell in China, have a dilemma. Either, they get money from conscientious consumers but cut ties with their parent company and refuse to sell in China. Or they test on animals, keeping things stable in the company and selling goods in one of the most profitable countries; although this means they’ll lose out selling to cruelty free people.
At first it would appear that this is a black and white choice, and yet many companies have found a third option. What if companies were to stay with their parent company and sell to China, but still claim to be cruelty free?
Surely people would notice this? Well, yes most who are into doing their research will notice straight away. But the casual shopper? We trust what we’re told and we believe that companies tell us the truth. It’s why most people don’t read the terms and conditions, and other details that are in fine print.
This means that good hearted people, who trust in the system, believe and buy products that are labelled as cruelty free. Technically they are. Those products have not been tested on animals. Yet, their money is going towards corporations that test or to China. All while they are being sold ‘Fight Animal Testing’ bags.
And that’s why I believe we shouldn’t buy from companies to still sell to China. Not because they should be trying to change the laws, but because they are tricking good hearted people. They have seen that there is money in morality, and they will pretend to genuinely care about the movement, while still contributing to the problem.
Personally, I’ve never liked being manipulated.
What about you?
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