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Reps. Beyer, McSally Introduce Humane Cosmetics Act

Legislation with broad bipartisan support would end cosmetic testing on animals

Rep. Don Beyer today joined Arizona Representative Martha McSally today to introduce legislation to phase out and ultimately end the practice of testing the safety of cosmetics on animals in the United States. The Humane Cosmetics Act would prohibit selling or transporting any cosmetics in interstate commerce if any component of the final product was developed or manufactured using animal testing.

“Congress should permanently end the painful and unnecessary process of testing cosmetics on animals in this country,” said Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA). “The cosmetics industry already has safer, more cost effective methods of testing that do not harm animals. American companies face no economic risk from this legislation, which would also show moral leadership.”

“The cruelty animals are subjected to during cosmetics testing is unacceptable—from lethal dose tests to irritation and force-feeding tests. Not only are these tests inhumane, but modern technology makes them unnecessary and overly expensive,” said Rep. McSally (AZ-02). “The cosmetics industry is already using alternative cutting edge testing methods that are safer, cheaper, and don’t hurt animals. It’s time the United States join the ranks of over 30 other countries in the developed world to stand against this vile practice. The inhumane treatment of animals serves no place in our society.” 

“There’s no need to torture and kill animals for cosmetic testing purposes,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “There are superior, non-animal testing methods, and the U.S. should join more than 30 countries in ending archaic testing.  No animal should suffer for a new tube of lipstick or shampoo.”

“Ending the use of animals for testing of cosmetics is an issue that both sides of the aisle can get behind, which is why I am so excited that the Humane Cosmetics Act has been introduced,” said Bellamy Young, who stars as President Melody "Mellie" Grant in the ABC drama TV show, Scandal. “The pain and suffering endured by guinea pigs, rabbits, mice and other animals at the hands of the cosmetics industry is fundamentally unacceptable to the American people who care deeply about the humane treatment of all animals. I sincerely hope lawmakers rush to co-sponsor the HCA, so the U.S. can join 37 other nations that have already passed laws to ban or limit these archaic, unnecessary experiments on animals.”

The Humane Cosmetics Act will bring U.S. cosmetic policy in line with more than 30 countries that have already implemented bans on animal testing and the sale of animal-tested cosmetics—including the European Union, Israel, Norway, Switzerland, and India.  In fact, of the 13 biggest importers of American cosmetics, 8 countries have bans in place or legislation under consideration. To sell their products to these countries, American cosmetic companies already have to comply with animal testing bans. 700 cosmetic brands in North America don’t test products or ingredients on animals, and instead use other affordable, proven methods of testing and innovate with thousands of ingredients already proven safe for use.

The legislation has been endorsed by 195 companies in the cosmetic industry, and the Humane Cosmetics Act is supported in equal measure by Republicans and Democrat cosponsors.