A complete ban on the sale of cosmetics which have been tested on animals came into force on March 11^th 2013.

Testing ingredients and products on animals has been banned in the UK since 1997 and has been banned in the EU since 2009. However, until last week, retailers could continue to sell cosmetics containing ingredients that had been tested on animals in other countries outside the EU.

In short, this ban now applies to all cosmetics and their ingredients sold in the EU, irrespective of where in the world any animal testing took place.

Since the ban in 2009, the EU have been putting pressure on their trading partners in other countries to follow suit. Last week’s ‘total ban’ should help to encourage collaboration amongst scientists, regulators and manufacturers to seek safe testing which does not require the use of animals. Animal rights organisations are now targeting countries outside the EU to persuade them to follow the lead shown by Europe in legislating against animal tested products.

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