Is St. Ives Cruelty-Free?

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Is St. Ives Cruelty-Free?

Yes, St. Ives is cruelty-free. They don't test their finished products or ingredients on animals, and neither do their suppliers or any third-parties. It's also verified that their products are not tested on animals anywhere in the world, including mainland China.

Parent company:

Unilever

  • Finished products tested on animals

    No

  • Ingredients tested on animals

    No

  • Suppliers test on animals

    No

  • Third party animal testing

    No

  • Sold where animal testing is required by law

    No

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Until recently, St. Ives has inherited the animal testing policy of its parent company Unilever. For this reason, they were on PETA’s list of companies that test on animals. However there’s been a recent change, and St. Ives is now fully cruelty-free.

This is their updated animal testing policy:

“As of December 2018, St. Ives is thrilled to announce that we are proud to be officially PETA-Certified Cruelty-Free across our entire product portfolio, which only reinforces our continued commitment to never testing on animals.”

In addition to this, St. Ives reached out to us and they were able to answer all our questions regarding their animal testing policy.

Does your brand test on animals, for either finished products or ingredients? 

No. St. Ives is not tested on animals anywhere in the world and is certified by PETA.

 Do your suppliers test on animals? How do you ensure this?

No. Our commitment to no animal testing extends to the ingredients provided by our suppliers. The PETA accreditation has a requirement for statements of assurance by suppliers, which we comply with.

Do you allow any third-parties to test on animals on your behalf? 

No.

Do you test on animals where required by law? 

No. We have a policy prohibiting any animal tests anywhere in the world: no projects are approved internally if they were to result in a requirement for animal testing of St. Ives products or ingredients. 

Are your products sold in mainland China (excluding online sales, not Hong Kong)? 

No, St. Ives is not sold in mainland China.

St. Ives confirmed that they don’t test on animals at any point during production, and no suppliers or third-parties test on animals on their behalf. They also don’t test on animals where required by law or sell in stores in mainland China.

It’s also important to note that St. Ives has never been available for sale in stores in mainland China according to their representent, who told us that “St. Ives is not and has never been sold directly in China. Consumers in China are only able to purchase St. Ives through cross-border e-commerce sites.”

We also received the following statement from them:

“St. Ives is proud to be certified by PETA as cruelty-free. We have always maintained a policy prohibiting animal tests on our products anywhere in the world and received our PETA cruelty-free certification in November 2018. PETA’s Beauty Without Bunnies cruelty-free certification is a great way of letting our consumers know that St. Ives does not and will not test on animals.” 

Are St. Ives products vegan-friendly?

Most of their products are vegan. From their FAQ, St. Ives state:

“None of our products contain animal derived ingredients with the exception of the St. Ives Collagen & Elastin Moisturizer and the St. Ives Collagen & Elastin Body Lotion, which contain collagen and elastin derived from a marine source. “

St. Ives is a commonly available brand that can be found in many drugstores across the world. We’re happy that they’re committed to stay cruelty-free. Keep in mind that St. Ives is still owned by Unilever, a company that tests on animals. Choosing St. Ives is a better alternative than any brand that tests on animals. If you’re transitioning to cruelty-free products and are looking for easy drugstore switches, they’re an easy option to look for, specifically for body care products.

Is St. Ives owned by a parent company that tests on animals?

St. Ives is owned by Unilever which is not a cruelty-free brand. If you prefer avoiding brands owned by a company that tests on animals, we recommend avoiding St. Ives.

In the beauty industry, it’s common for brands to be owned by a larger company. These are called parent companies, and they’re often global corporations such as L’Oreal, Estee Lauder, or Procter & Gamble.

Most of these parent companies are not cruelty-free, since they test on animals to some degree. They might also own several brands that are not cruelty-free.

However, some of the brands owned by these parent companies are cruelty-free and have strict policies against animal testing.

There are pros and cons to supporting cruelty-free brands owned by parent companies that aren’t.

You can either:

  • Choose to boycott them since they’re a part of a larger conglomerate that engages in animal testing.
  • Choose to support some of them based on the individual ethics of each parent company, or only purchase from them if there are no independent alternatives.
  • Choose to support them since they are 100% cruelty-free even though their parent company is not, therefore showing their parent company that consumers are favoring their cruelty-free brands.

In the cruelty-free community, the majority of conscious consumers purchase from cruelty-free brands even if they’re owned by a parent company that tests on animals. This is our stance at Cruelty-Free Kitty as well. We believe that supporting all cruelty-free brands is the only path towards a cruelty-free and more ethical beauty industry.

It’s also worth noting that subsidiary brands of parent companies are unique corporations by themselves. They act as independent branches and operate independently from the parent company, and can also be sold to other companies including cruelty-free ones.

Another aspect to consider is that many parts of the world only have access to limited brands, so their only cruelty-free options are owned by large corporations. This is a concern we hear about constantly from our international readers. Given this complex landscape, we believe that supporting all cruelty-free brands is ethical as well as practical.

A minority of shoppers choose to boycott brands owned by a parent company that tests on animals.

At Cruelty-Free Kitty, we make it easy for all of our readers to know which brands are owned by a parent company that tests on animals. At the top of each brand page, you’ll see a “parent company” note if that’s the case.

You can also filter our list of cruelty-free brands to only show brands that are not owned by any company that tests on animals.

Finally, for a list of brands owned by a parent company that tests on animals, click here.

Is St. Ives sold where animal testing is required by law?

No, St. Ives is not sold where animal testing is required by law.

You can trust Cruelty-Free Kitty to be on top of the most recent changes in China’s animal testing laws. As of 2023, the vast majority of beauty brands available in China have had their products tested on animals.

Mainland China still requires these mandatory animal tests for most companies. Is it possible for brands to bypass them? Yes, however it’s currently extremely rare as brands need to “jump through several hoops”.

One way to bypass these animal tests is to only have their products available only online, and not in physical stores. Another way is to manufacture the products in China while making sure to adhere to strict regulations.

In all other cases, beauty brands need to pay for cruel animal tests to be performed using their products. It’s estimated that close to 100,000 rabbits are used in animal testing for cosmetics each year in China alone.

Even though the company itself isn’t executing these animal experiments, they bear full responsibility. Not only does the company sign off on the experiments, but they’re also funding them.

Is St. Ives certified cruelty-free by any organizations?

Yes, St. Ives is certified by Peta.

While companies can be fully cruelty-free without being certified, it’s still a good indicator of their ethical practices. Leaping Bunny and PETA are the two organizations giving out cruelty-free certification.

Is St. Ives vegan?

St. Ives is cruelty-free but not 100% vegan, meaning that some of their products contain animal-derived ingredients.

Brands can be cruelty-free without being vegan, and claim to be vegan without being cruelty-free. This is because “cruelty-free” refers to the animal testing aspect, while “vegan” refers to the ingredients.

A “vegan” product contains no animal-derived ingredients, such as Beeswax (made by bees), Carmine (a red pigment made from crushed beetles), or Collagen (from mammal or fish skin).

A company is “cruelty-free” at company level, meaning they can’t have cruelty-free products unless the whole company is cruelty-free. However, a company can offer vegan products even if not all of their products are vegan. If all of their products are vegan, then we refer to the brand as “100% vegan”.

We have a list of 100% vegan brands, and you can also filter our official list of cruelty-free brands and choose to show vegan brands only.

Looking for vegan products from cruelty-free brands? Visit our Product Database and make sure you use the vegan filter.

Does St. Ives test on animals?

No, St. Ives does not test on animals. They do not conduct or fund animal testing at any level from their ingredients to their finished products. They don't engage in animal testing as a brand, and neither do their suppliers or any third parties, anywhere in the world.

How do you determine that brands like St. Ives are cruelty-free?

We contact brands directly with our questions in order to get their full animal testing policy. If brands answer all our questions and confirm that no animal testing is happening at any point during production and beyond, they're added to our cruelty-free list. All brands we add have confirmed the information above.

We ask all conscious consumers to be mindful of misleading statements from brands. Companies that test on animals try to minimize their involvement in animal testing, and understandably so—if a brand were to proudly claim to perform cruel tests on animals, their customers would surely reconsider being a loyal fan.

What they do instead is use clever language that shifts the blame away from themselves and makes the public believe that they’re not responsible for the animal testing, or that the animal testing performed on their products is “an exception”.

If a brand is listed as “not cruelty-free” in our database, you can rest assured that their products were tested on animals in recent years.

We monitor every change and constantly post updates. The changes in our database, list of cruelty-free, and brand pages are reflected in real time as soon as we become aware of new information.

Is Cruelty-Free Kitty reliable?

Founded in 2014 by Suzana Rose, Cruelty-Free Kitty is the largest and most trusted cruelty-free shopping platform.

We vet every single brand added to our database by contacting them directly and ensuring they adhere to our strict criteria we call "The Cruelty-Free 5".

For a brand to be listed as cruelty-free, it must satisfy the following:

  1. The brand itself does not test on animals, for either finished products or ingredients.
  2. Suppliers do not test on animals for products, raw materials, or ingredients.
  3. No third parties test on animals on the brand's behalf.
  4. The brand does not test on animals when required by law.
  5. The brand does not sell cosmetics in physical stores in mainland China.

At Cruelty-Free Kitty, we have an unwavering commitment to accuracy. The landscape of cosmetics animal testing is constantly evolving globally. Our team is diligent about staying current on changing laws, brand acquisitions, and policy updates that impact cruelty-free status.

To date, we’ve vetted over 1200+ brands and helped millions of conscious shoppers choose products that aren’t tested on animals. Please feel free to contact us with any questions by using our contact form.

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