I want to address this question because it keeps popping up in the Ask Suzi form and in the comments.

The Question

You’ve asked:

I was under the impression Becca was a cruelty free company, and have recently discovered that the production of my Jaclyn Hill Eyeshadow Palette was Made In China…? China has strict rules and regulations on animal testing cosmetics. How did Becca Cosmetics stay cruelty free with production in China? – Ava

I saw that some of my sisters L.A. Colors beauty products had a label that said “made in China,” so does that make L.A. Colors cosmetics non-cruelty-free??? – Hayley

I’m really curious at the moment about Barry M products and whether they are actually cruelty free as I am aware some of their products are made in china? – Claire

The Answer

If you see a Made in China claim on your makeup, don’t panic!

Products made in China are NOT tested animals. It’s only when a beauty brand enters the Chinese market and sells their products in China that it loses its cruelty-free status.

To understand why this is the case, it’s important that we understand what China’s animal testing law is and why it exists.

The mandatory animal testing law in China aims to protect the people of China. It’s a safety measure to ensure that no harmful cosmetics will be sold in China. It’s cruel and obsolete, but like all animal testing, the goal is to ensure that products are safe for human use.

Hence why cosmetics are ONLY tested on animals in China if they’re going to be SOLD there.

And if you want to dig a little bit deeper…

The current and updated law is this:

  • ALL foreign cosmetics imported into China must undergo animal testing in order to be sold there.
  • SOME cosmetics manufactured in China are able to skip the animal testing in order to be sold there.
  • The animal testing can be bypassed IF the company agrees to use alternative testing methods, and IF they only sell normal cosmetics.
  • Special-use cosmetics such as sunscreens, antiperspirants, hair dye, and whitening products HAVE to be tested on animals even if they’re manufactured in China.

China uses both pre-market and post-market animal testing. By selling their products in China, companies agree to both of these practices.

Pre-market testing means that the products are tested on animals before the products are able to hit the shelves. Post-market testing isn’t mandatory, but it can happen: at any moment, the authorities can require that products already on the shelves be testing on animals.

This is why, even if a company manufactures products in China, they can’t under any circumstances sell their products in China and remain cruelty-free.

However, they can absolutely manufacture their products in China and remain 100% cruelty-free.

Got a Question?

Drop me a line using the Ask Suzi form. I read every question and answer the best ones on the blog!

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6 Comments on "If Cosmetics Are Made in China, Are They Tested On Animals? | Ask Suzi #5"

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Kiss & Make-up

Okay, this is a relief, thanks!


Maybe I’m bit off here, but could it not also be that the cosmetic cases/bottle is made in china and not the product itself? 😀 Either way it’s good to know 🙂

Suzi Scheler

I believe the “made in x” refers to the product!


this is just way too iffy for me! i’m sticking to products made in the usa as much as possible.

Sara Whitaker

Thank you for your post. It was so helpful.


I have some products that I’ve had for a while that are from Kmart Australia, and they are made in China. Haven’t used them much but I’m freaking out cause I don’t know if they are tested or not. The brands are Beauty Care Co. but it’s weird because all the products I have by them are either from Australia or China, brought to NZ. Help ?