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Our Values: Fighting Animal Testing

Leading the fight against animal cruelty

Fighting animal testing is more than just a slogan: it’s a genuine practice.

For more than three decades, we’ve been fighting against animal testing. Lush was founded on the firm belief that animal testing is cruel, inaccurate and unnecessary, and the founders of the business have dedicated their careers to elimination of animal testing in cosmetics. Lush has the strictest non-animal testing policy in the cosmetics industry. We only buy ingredients from suppliers that don’t conduct or commission tests on animals for any reason and we audit them annually to ensure they meet the standards of our policy. When we develop new products, we only test them on human volunteers.

As a result, we can proudly say that all Lush products are 100 percent cruelty-free and never tested on animals.

Our strict policy is unique, but we want our peers in the cosmetics industry and our customers to adopt the same stance. It’s no longer a legal requirement to test cosmetics and their ingredients on animals. There are roughly 20,000 cosmetic ingredients that have already been established as safe, as well as a growing number of proven, non-animal test methods that are scientifically superior, faster and cheaper than their cruel alternatives. For instance, three-dimensional human skin models can replace rabbits for skin irritation testing, and cell cultures can be used to test for sunlight-induced phototoxicity, genetic mutations and other harmful effects without ever harming an animal.

Despite these advancements, animal testing in the cosmetics industry still happens today. We’re passionate about both the quality of our products and the safety of our customers, so we comply with federal safety standards while campaigning against legislation that requires animal testing and supporting the development and validation of non-animal tests. Using our more than 250 shops in North America as a platform, we’ve spent the last 15 years raising awareness about animal testing. Since 2006, we’ve partnered with organizations like Humane Society International to lobby governments and industry to end animal testing in cosmetics all over the world.

Fighting animal testing is more than just a slogan: it’s a genuine practice.

A person carries a Lush tote with the quote ”Make animal testing extinct”.

The Lush Prize

Early in Lush’s history, our efforts were focused on our own strict policy and avoiding animal testing, but in 2012 we decided to put our money where our mouths are and created the Lush Prize.

Awarded every two years, the £250,000 Lush Prize focuses on safety testing for consumer products and complements projects that address alternatives to animal testing for medicines. We award prizes for Science, Training, Lobbying, Public Awareness and Young Researchers to continue their work developing and supporting new animal-free initiatives. This prize is a way for us to join a global conversation about animal testing and give passionate researchers and activists the opportunity to showcase and continue their work. Since its launch, the Lush Prize has awarded more than £2,190,000 to 110 winners from 28 countries.

One example of the type of work the Lush Prize supports is the development of new non-animal materials for safety testing. In 2017, Professor Jennifer Lewis of Harvard University was awarded £50,000 for her lab’s work in the science sector. Professor Lewis’ team has developed synthetic human tissues that can be used for drug safety testing, effectively eliminating the need for animals to be used for these tests. Their human kidney and heart models are currently being used for drug safety tests, and their work has been highlighted as one of the top 10 breakthrough technologies by MIT Technology Review.

Charitable Giving

Our Charity Pot Body Lotion gives 100% of the purchase price (minus the taxes) to grassroots groups fighting for animal protection, environmental justice and human rights. Since 2007, your purchases of Charity Pot have supported around 2800 organizations in 83 countries around the world. Through Charity Pot, we’ve been able to partner with incredible groups like Beagle Freedom Project to further the fight against animal testing.

Beagle Freedom Project (BFP) rescues dogs from laboratories and tells their stories to promote alternatives to animal testing and highlight the importance of a cruelty-free lifestyle. These dogs, almost always beagles, have never experienced freedom, safety or affection. BFP champions campaign policy initiatives based on these rescues to end animal testing. Funds from Charity Pot went towards BFP’s Legislative Action Campaign, which calls for the release of both dogs and cats from the research laboratories that receive state or tax incentives.

You can join the fight to ban animal testing in the cosmetics industry by supporting the Humane Cosmetics Act in the United States and the Cruelty Free Cosmetics Act  in Canada.