When it comes to understanding China’s animal testing laws and requirements for cosmetics, there’s been a lot of confusion about whether the laws apply to cosmetics that are made in China and cosmetics that are sold in China.
Made in China vs. Sold in China
Cosmetics are required to be tested on animals by law in China, but are those laws imposed on cosmetics that are made or sold in China?
Only cosmetics that are sold in China are required to be registered and therefore required to be tested on animals by law.
That means, cruelty-free companies can manufacture or make their cosmetics in China, but just as long as they are not selling their product in-stores in China, then none of their products are required to be tested on animals as required by China’s laws.
Selling In-stores or Online
Companies can sell their products to the Chinese market through an online store without having their products tested on animals. China’s animal testing laws only require imported cosmetics that are sold in a physical store in Mainland China.
The Chinese government conducts mandatory animal tests on all cosmetic products imported into the country. The government may also conduct animal tests on items pulled from store shelves. Therefore, even if a cosmetics company does not test their products or ingredients on animals, if they sell their products in China they cannot be considered cruelty-free. (HSI)
An Exception – Hong Kong
The only exception could be made is selling in Hong Kong. Although Hong Kong is part of China, they have their own political system and Hong Kong does not follow the same animal testing requirements as Mainland China.
- Only cosmetics sold in-stores in Mainland China are required to be tested on animals
- Cosmetics that are made in China are not required to be tested on animals
- China’s animal testing requirements only apply to cosmetics sold in-stores and does not extend to cosmetics sold online
- Hong Kong is exempt from China’s animal testing laws as they have their own political system