A few months ago, cosmetics brand Urban Decay announced that they were going to change their stance on animal testing in order to sell their products in China. Despite publicly changing their stance on testing, Urban Decay also continued to market products as vegan. After a large public outcry, they reversed this decision to sell in China and went back to their cruelty free ways.
Now there is yet another twist in the Urban Decay saga. Cosmetics giant L’Oreal has announced that they plan to buy Urban Decay.
L’Oreal has long been known to be one of the worst offenders when it comes to animal testing. L’Oreal also owns a large number of very popular cosmetics brands (you can view the full list on L’Oreals own site), only one of which, The Body Shop, has been able to maintain their cruelty free status by not testing on animals. Despite all but one of their brands testing on animals, L’Oreal occasionally donates money to “help put a stop to animal testing”. In March of 2012, they donated $1.2 million to researching alternatives. Yet did not stop testing on animals themselves despite a wide variety of humane alternatives being readily available.
So what does this mean for Urban Decay? It’s hard to say.
Being owned by a company who is so well known for their poor treatment of animals will lose them a lot of customers right off the bat. To many, buying from a brand who is owned by a company who tests on animals is enough to no longer consider that brand to be cruelty free. I like to leave this decision up to readers. Some would rather buy from a cruelty free brand (even if their parents company does test) than buy from a brand that tests on animals. Not everyone has access to a wide range of cruelty free brands that have cruelty free parent companies. Buying from a cruelty free brand is better than nothing and helps send the parent company a small message about where your money is going. Any brand mentioned on Logical Harmony with a parent company who tests will have that noted. It’s possible that, like The Body Shop, Urban Decay products may not be tested on animals.
However, part of the reason that L’Oreal wants to buy Urban Decay is so they can open the brand up to a worldwide market. This likely means selling Urban Decay products in China, where animal testing is required by law. This is not confirmed and could just be speculation. At this point, it really could go either way with Urban Decay’s stance on animal testing.
I would contact Urban Decay and let them know how important it is to you that they remain cruelty free, even if being bought by L’Oreal. If them being owned by a parent company that tests on animals means you will not buy their products, let them know. If they decide to change their stance on animal testing in order to sell in new markets, let them know that this means losing you as a customer. It really is important to use your voice in these situations and let these brands know your thoughts and feelings. If Urban Decay has already backed out of testing on animals in order to sell in China, perhaps having a vocal community of people continuing to support them being cruelty free will keep it that way.