Last Updated: March 1, 2024

How Ethical Is Algenist?

Make a positive impact by supporting companies with the same values and ethics as what matters most to you. To navigate and find ethical brands, here’s a summary of Algenist’s ethics and initiatives.

Ethical Analysis

Is Algenist cruelty-free or vegan? We’ve got the answers here! Read below for more details on Algenist’s policies.
Algenist is NOT Cruelty-Free. Algenist engages in animal testing by allowing its products to be animal-tested.
Yes, Algenist sells its products in stores in mainland China under conditions where animal testing is still legally required.
Algenist claims to offer “vegan” skincare formulas that are free of animal-derived ingredients, but because Algenist engages in animal testing, we wouldn’t classify anything sold or produced by Algenist to be vegan.


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Algenist is NOT Cruelty-Free!

Algenist allows its products or ingredients to be tested on animals when required by law including when selling in stores in mainland China.

Algenist’s Animal Testing Policy

On Algenist’s website, they claim they don’t conduct animal testing unless required by law.

See below for a screenshot of what’s currently stated on Algenist’s website:

Policies stating, “unless required by law,” usually imply the company is selling its products in mainland China. That’s because cosmetics sold in stores in mainland China are required by law to be tested on animals.

Is Algenist Sold in China?

In my research, I discovered that Algenist products are indeed sold in stores in mainland China.

Below is a screenshot of Algenist listed as one of the brands available at Sephora in China:

Algenist Sold in China - Cannot be Cruelty-Free

But Doesn’t China No Longer Tests on Animals?

Companies can bypass China’s pre-market animal testing by choosing to manufacture their ordinary or general cosmetics in China, but it’s not stated anywhere that Algenist has taken this route.

Additionally, the possibility of post-market animal testing is not completely ruled out and may be conducted on some cosmetics sold in physical stores in China.

As of May 1, 2021, cosmetic companies can also export and sell their ordinary or general cosmetics in China without animal testing only if they meet a set of preconditions first. However, meeting these conditions has proven difficult, and it’s still unclear what exactly is accepted according to the new regulations. So there’s no word yet of any company that has successfully done so.

Follow the highlighted lines in the graphic below to see why most cosmetics sold in China (like Algenist) are still required by law to be tested on animals in 2022.

Because Algenist has decided to sell in mainland China stores, they must consent and pay to have their products tested on animals. That’s why most cosmetics brands selling in mainland China cannot be considered cruelty-free in 2022.

Although Algenist may not be conducting these animal tests themselves, they knowingly allow Chinese authorities to test their products on animals to sell in China.

For those reasons, we would not consider Algenist to be cruelty-free by our standards.

Cruelty-Free Policies

Many truly cruelty-free brands have chosen not to sell their products in China because of its animal testing laws. Unfortunately, Algenist refuses to do the same and therefore cannot be considered cruelty-free.

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, including when required by law.

See below for our complete cruelty-free checklist. Since Algenist already does not meet the last two, we cannot classify the brand as being cruelty-free.

Complete Cruelty-Free Checklist

Is Algenist Certified Cruelty-Free?

Algenist is not certified cruelty-free by any third-party cruelty-free certifications like Leaping Bunny or PETA.

Because Algenist is not certified cruelty-free by a third party, no one is looking into or substantiating Algenist’s cruelty-free commitments and claims.

Is Algenist Cruelty-Free?

To sum up, by choosing to sell in mainland China, Algenist must have its products tested on animals. Therefore, we would NOT consider Algenist to be a cruelty-free brand.

Currently, Algenist is on our List of Brands to Avoid – Animal Tested.

Is Algenist Vegan?

Algenist claims to offer “vegan” skincare formulas that are free of animal-derived ingredients, but because Algenist engages in animal testing, we wouldn’t classify anything sold or produced by Algenist to be vegan.

In order for products to be considered vegan by ethical elephant’s standards, the products and their ingredients must not be tested on animals anywhere in the world. Also, they must not contain any animal-derived ingredients or by-products.

I also noticed Sephora listing some of Algenist products in their “Vegan Skincare” category but note that Algenist is NOT cruelty-free. Algenist products are tested on animals.

Sephora is labeling products as “vegan” when they’re formulated without any animal ingredients or by-products. But “Vegan” Cosmetics should also consider whether the products or its ingredients were tested on animals, anywhere in the world.

Cruelty-Free Alternatives to Algenist

Looking to switch to cruelty-free cosmetics? Here are some cruelty-free brands that are similar to Algenist:

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What do you think

2 thoughts on “Algenist”

  1. I’m confused – you link the company’s official statement, but then completely disagree and stat they *do* test on animals. Where are your sources that prove they test on animals, other than your anecdotes regarding China?

  2. Valeriya Pinkhasova

    Tatcha may be cruelty free as advertised but they use silk worms in their products . So far everything I inquired about is not vegan friendly .

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