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Dr Barbara Sturm is Cruelty-Free
Dr. Barbara Sturm has confirmed they do not test their products or ingredients on animals or ask others to test on their behalf. Their suppliers also do not test on animals, nor do they allow their products to be tested on animals when required by law. And finally, their products are not sold in stores in mainland China or any other country that may require animal testing.
By our standards, we would consider Dr. Barbara Sturm to be Cruelty-Free.
Below is a screenshot of what’s currently stated on Dr. Barbara Sturm’s company website:
What About China’s Animal Testing Laws?
As of May 1, 2021, some imported ordinary cosmetics can be exempt from animal testing under certain conditions. However, for the most part, animal testing is still legally required for most imported cosmetics in 2021.
But Dr. Barbara Sturm has confirmed they do not sell their products in retail stores in mainland China; therefore, they are not required to test on animals.
Note that there is no legal definition for the label ‘Cruelty-Free.‘ It can mean different things to different people. But Cruelty-Free is generally used to imply no animal testing. More specifically, the ingredients, formulation, or finished product are not tested on animals at any stage of product development.
At ethical elephant, we always assess a company’s cruelty-free policy using our Cruelty-Free Checklist. This ensures no animal testing was performed by the brand itself, its suppliers, and by any third parties.
Also, note that Cruelty-Free and Vegan don’t always mean the same thing.
Dr. Barbara Sturm is Not 100% Vegan
‘Vegan’ in cosmetics can refer to an entire brand that is 100% Vegan or a specific product is vegan.
In the case of Dr. Barbara Sturm, not all of their products are vegan. But they have some products that are suitable for vegans.
How to know which of Dr. Barbara Sturm products are vegan?
Dr. Barbara Sturm states on their website that they do not describe their products as vegan although they don’t contain animal-derived ingredients or by-products.
The following is a screenshot of what’s currently stated on their website about their vegan claims:
Which of Dr. Barbara Sturm Products are Vegan?
But when I emailed to ask if they have a list of their vegan products, they told me that almost all of their products are vegan with the exception of a few.
The majority of Dr. Barbara Sturm products are vegan however the following are our products that are not:
- Lip Balm – not vegan
- Sun Drops SPF 50 – not vegan
- Glow Drops – not vegan
- Facial Scrub – not vegan
- Baby & Kids Face Cream – not vegan
- Baby & Kids Nappy Cream – not vegan
- Baby & Kids Body Cream – not vegan
- Baby Bum Cream – not vegan
- Clarifying Spot Treatment – not vegan
- Clarifying Face Cream – not vegan
- Clarifying Mask – not vegan
- Clarifying Serum – not vegan
- Body Brush – not vegan
Similar to ‘Cruelty-Free,’ there is no standard or legal definition for the label ‘Vegan.’ But it’s usually used in the context to describe something that doesn’t contain any animal-derived ingredients or animal by-products.
Some common animal products used in cosmetics include carmine, lanolin, snail mucus, beeswax, honey, pearl or silk-derived ingredients, animal-based glycerin, keratin, and squalene.
There are plant-based and synthetic alternatives to animal-derived ingredients. But it’s sometimes difficult to know with certainty whether a product is vegan just by reading the ingredient list.
So it’s best to ask the company and manufacturers to ensure the ingredients they’ve chosen to use were from non-animal sources.
Ethical Mica Mining Policy
Mica is a mineral that’s used in cosmetics to add a shimmery effect. But the mining of natural mica has been linked to child labor and human rights violations.
Unless a company publicly addresses its mica mining policy, we have no way of knowing whether its mica is ethically sourced without child or forced labor.
So I asked Dr. Barbara Sturm if their mica is ethically sourced without the use of child labor and they responded by stating,
“MICA is included in the following products:
– Eye Cream
– Anti-Aging Primer
– Glow Drops
Much of the mica from India is sourced in particular from the northeastern states of Jharkhand and Bihar. This region suffers from political instability and poverty, with widespread child labor and special measures have been taken to meet social and environmental standards.
From our side no child labor is tolerated and contractually prohibited to employ children.
Initiatives are therefore being promoted and measures taken to improve the conditions for mica procurement based on the high standards. The monitoring processes are constantly checked.”