Let’s look into the La Roche-Posay brand’s current animal testing policy and cruelty-free status in 2020.
Is La Roche-Posay Cruelty-Free?
Are La Roche-Posay products cruelty-free? NO! La Roche-Posay is a widely renowned brand recommended by dermatologists as it targets a number of skin related issues. However, the brand cannot be considered cruelty-free because it sells its products in China; a country where testing of cosmetics on animals is required by law.
Even if a brand may not be directly involved in animal cruelty; animal testing being one of the major concerns, but if they are a part of it to abide by law or if any of their suppliers are involved in such practices then by extension the brand also has its hands dirty and for ethical reasons such brands cannot be considered cruelty-free.
Is La Roche-Posay Sold in China?
Is La Roche-Posay available in China? YES! La Roche-Posay products are sold in mainland China.
La Roche-Posay is a dermocosmetics brand and sold in pharmacies and parapharmacies. It is highly popular in China where according to a 2014 survey, more than 80% of young Chinese suffer from acne.
And by the law, products under the cosmetic category (all except oral care and soap) that are manufactured outside of China and are to be sold in physical stores in mainland China have to be tested on animals before they can get the greenlight for sales. And usually Government authorized labs in China perform these tests which are financed by the brand or its parent company.
Also one key point here is that the law applies to only mainland China which is the People’s Republic of China and does not include Hongkong. So brands that sell in Hongkong but not in mainland China can be termed cruelty-free.
Is La Roche-Posay Vegan?
Is La Roche-Posay a vegan brand? NO!
For a brand to be considered Vegan, it has to pass the two criterias of ethics;
1) The brand is not involved, directly or indirectly in any form of animal cruelty
2) The products have to be completely free of ingredients (active as well as inactive ingredients) that are derived from animals
La Roche-Posay sells its products in mainland China where animals are tested upon for product safety guarantee. So the brand IS involved in animal cruelty.
The key ingredient in most products of La Roche-Posay is the prebiotic thermal water which is synonymous with the brand and effective which is why it is widely popular for its skin treatments. However, all the products also have inactive ingredients, the key component of which are cetyl and stearyl alcohol. These are fatty alcohols derived from animal fat and used as a thickening agent in most creams and lotions.
La Roche-Posay has animal derived ingredients and has a role to play in animal testing, failing both the above ethic standards and hence La Roche-Posay is NOT a vegan brand.
What is La Roche-Posay’s Animal Testing Policy?
The brand addresses its animal testing policy as a FAQ in the contact us page on its official website. It states:
La Roche-Posay does not test any of its products or any of its ingredients on animals, anywhere in the world nor does La Roche-Posay delegate this task to others. The only possible exception is if regulatory authorities required it for safety or regulatory purposes.
And here by regulatory authorities they mean China where animal testing is mandated by law. But the choice of building a market in China is the company’s prerogative and they choose to do so despite knowing the consequences and this holds true with most brands. China has a $32 million cosmetic industry and a continually growing demand which is highly lucrative for business and the reason why even though a company knows what they are signing up for they are willing to forego ethics under the ‘required by law’ safety blanket.
Is La Roche-Posay Owned By a Parent Company?
YES! La Roche-Posay is a French brand created in 1921 but is now acquired by L’Oreal and is part of L’Oreal’s Active Beauty division which was created for brands that are endorsed by dermatologists and other physicians.
The parent company L’Oreal is also on the PETA list of companies that DOES test on animals.
What Does La Roche-Posay Sell?
La Roche-Posay is a dermocosmetics brand that has a range of products targeting specific skin types and skin ailments like serums, lotions, sunscreens, face masks and also moisturizers that are safe for infants and children.
What is La Roche-Posay’s Current Cruelty-Free Position?
La Roche-Posay’s position in 2020 is that the brand is NOT cruelty-free.
It breaks at least two of the below Cruelty-free 5 criterias:
- A company directly engages in animal testing
- A company’s supplier’s engage in animal testing
- A company permits a third party to test on their behalf
- A company tests on animals when required by law
- A company sells products in stores in mainland China despite being aware of the country’s mandatory animal testing policy
I Use La Roche-Posay Products. What Can I Do to Help?
La Roche-Posay as a brand has helped millions with their skin disorders and have many loyalists who not only care about the brand but also feel the need to have an impact on society. If you are one of them then talk to the brand, let them know how you feel and how age old methods of cruelty and abuse need to be shunned. The world is progressing in every way and a sustainable future for all living things is the need of the hour.