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Is Kiehl’s Cruelty-Free in 2021?

Is Kiehl’s Cruelty-Free in 2021?

Current cruelty-free status

Is Kiehl's cruelty-free? Does the brand test on animals, do they sell in China, are they vegan, and what is their current cruelty-free status?


Is Kiehl's Cruelty-Free?

Is Kiehl’s Cruelty-Free?

Are Kiehl’s products cruelty-free? No, Kiehl’s is not cruelty-free, they test their products and/or ingredients on animals. Kiehl’s products are sold in mainland China where animal testing is still required by law.

Animal Testing For Cosmetic Products

The cosmetic industry is massive and brings in over $500 billion in revenue every year. With this amount of money on the line, cosmetic companies must ensure that their products are safe for human use.

Unfortunately, the way that many of these products are tested results in the death and injury of millions of animals. As a consumer, it’s important to understand where your beauty products come from and ensure they align with your values. 

Is Kiehl’s sold in China?

Does Kiehl’s sell in China? Yes, Kiehl’s is sold in mainland China. Even though the Chinese laws surrounding post-market testing have changed, brands are still subject to non-routine animal testing if a consumer makes a complaint about a product.

Is Kiehl's Sold In China?
Is Kiehl’s Sold In China?

Animal Testing And The Cosmetics Industry

Animal testing has been used in the cosmetic industry for nearly 100 years. The most common animals used in cosmetic product testing are rats, mice, rabbits, and guinea pigs. 

Some examples of animal testing include: 

  • Rubbing the product on shaved skin to see if there will be a rash or other allergic reaction.
  • Applying cosmetics around or directly in the eye to test if the product will cause irritation. 
  • Forcing ingestion over a set amount of time to see if there will be any long-lasting effects such as cancer, birth defects, or other chronic illnesses. 
  • Giving increasingly large quantities of a substance to determine what amount is harmful or even lethal. 

Typically, the animals used in these tests receive no pain relief or medication. Animals who are injured beyond their usefulness in a lab are usually euthanized. 

The good news is that more and more companies are moving away from testing that involves animals. Many of the non-animal tests available today are more accurate, faster, and safer than traditional animal testing. 

Does Kiehl’s test on animals?

Kiehl’s sells its products in mainland China where pre-market and post-market animal testing is still required by law.

Does Kiehl's Test On Animals?

Is Animal Testing Ethical? 

This can be a landmine of a question depending on who you ask. Some people argue that animal testing is perfectly fine since you are using it to ensure no further suffering in humans.

Others will argue that no level of benefit will ever justify the pain and suffering that these animals are subjected to. This is a decision that every person will have to make on their own.

Kiehl’s Animal Testing Policy

The Kiehl’s Animal Testing Policy states they test their products on animals where required by law.

We at Kiehl’s do not conduct animal testing on our products or ingredients, nor ask others to test on our behalf, except when required by law. As we continue to expand globally and reach our customers around the world, it is our practice to do our part towards advancing the science of safety and validated alternative methods that eliminate the need or requirement for any animal testing globally.”

Kiehl's Animal Testing Policy

Is Kiehl’s owned by a parent company?

Who owns Kiehl’s? Kiehl’s is owned by L’Oréal, a parent company that tests on animals.

L'Oréal Animal Testing Policy

Kiehl’s Products – What they sell

Kiehl’s sells skincare like the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream, Midnight Recovery Concentrate, Ultra Facial Cleanser, Avocado Eye Cream, Facial Fuel, Creme De Corps, Midnight Recovery Oil, Hand Cream, Youth Dose Eye Treatment, Magic Elixir, Amino Acid Shampoo, as well as lip balm, face cream, toner, shampoo, serum, hand cream, and lotion.

Is Kiehl’s vegan?

Are Kiehl’s products vegan? No, Kiehl’s is not 100% vegan meaning some of their products contain ingredients derived from animals or their by-products.

Is Kiehl's Vegan?

Vegan And Cruelty-Free: What’s The Difference? 

While many people use the terms vegan and cruelty-free interchangeably, there is a distinct difference. If you are going to make an informed decision about the products that you purchase and consume, it’s important to understand the terminology and exactly what you are buying. 

The process by which a product is tested will determine whether it is cruelty-free or not. Only products that have not been tested on animals can be labeled as cruelty-free. 

Keep in mind that just because a product is vegan or cruelty-free does not mean they are both. Vegan refers only to the ingredients and cruelty-free only refers to the testing process.

It’s possible for a product to be vegan and not cruelty-free. Likewise, a product can be cruelty-free and not vegan. For example, you could purchase an eyeliner that contains no animal products but was tested on animals.

Is Kiehl’s Gluten-Free?

No, Kiehl’s products are not 100% gluten-free. Some of their products contain wheat.

Is Kiehl's Gluten-Free?
Is Kiehl’s Gluten-Free?

Is Kiehl’s palm oil free?

Do Kiehl’s products contain palm oil? Yes, Kiehl’s products contain ingredients derived from palm oil which means this brand is NOT palm oil free.

Kiehl’s Falls Into One Or More Of The Following Categories:

  • Their finished products have been tested on animals
  • They have outsourced or commissioned animal testing to third parties
  • Their products are sold in mainland China
  • Their products are sold in countries where animal testing is required by law
  • The individual ingredients in their products have been tested on animals at some point

This brand is NOT cruelty-free in 2021!

Should Animal Testing Be Banned? 

If you believe that animal testing is unethical, you will be happy to know that many countries have already begun the process of banning or limiting the use of animal testing in cosmetic products.

The European Union, India, Israel, and Norway have banned animal testing and imported cosmetics that have been tested on animals. Several other countries have proposed similar legislation so this list is likely to grow. 

If you believe that animal testing should be banned, there are things that you can do to shape the future of the cosmetics industry. First, you can decide to purchase only vegan and cruelty-free products.

If people stop buying unethical products, companies will stop producing them. Next, encourage your local representatives to propose legislation or support any cruelty-free legislation that is pending approval.

Finally, be sure to educate your friends and family about animal tested products. 

Current Kiehl’s Cruelty-Free Status In 2021

Is Kiehl’s Cruelty-Free and vegan in 2021? No, Kiehl’s is not currently 100% vegan or cruelty-free.

I love this brand, what can I do?

Try reaching out and respectfully asking the brands you love to reconsider their animal testing policies and selling in the Chinese market until the post and pre-market animal testing laws have changed.

Want more? Check out our current list of cruelty-free brands.

Looking for beauty brands selling vegan products only?

Next article: Is Joico cruelty-free?

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