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Au Naturale is Cruelty-Free
Au Naturale 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 Au Naturale to be Cruelty-Free.
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 Au Naturale has confirmed they only sell in Hong Kong and not in mainland China; therefore, they are not required to test on animals.
Note that there is no standard or 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.
Au Naturale is 100% Vegan
Au Naturale has confirmed all of its products are vegan and don’t contain any animal-derived ingredients or by-products.
“All of our products are formulated without animal bi-products, synthetic preservatives, nanoparticles, gluten, or parabens. Each product is naturally derived, cruelty-free, vegan and made in the USA.“
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.
Thankfully, on Au Naturale’s website, it states:
“Because of the atrocity of child labor, Au Naturale only partners with mica suppliers that provide complete transparency and own, audit and operate their supply chain from start to finish. This ensures that the micas that we use are mined ethically, purely processed, distributed clearly and provide resources and fair compensation for the impoverished communities from which they are mined.
Until now, we at Au Naturale have only used naturally derived micas from our trusted vetted suppliers. However, after doing our research and in alignment with our mission to continue to create positive human rights and environmental impact with our products, we have decided to open our portfolio of products to include synthetic mica pigments.
We believe that it is okay to have a change of heart upon listening, reading and learning and want our consumers to know why we have made this change.
Synthetic colorants have a very important place in the beauty industry. There are many cosmetic colorants that are required to be synthetic in order to be used in cosmetics according to the FDA (which we will talk about in a bit), and there are cosmetic colorants (such as synthetic micas) that aren’t required to be synthetic, but also make a positive impact on people, process and planet.
Synthetic micas do just that. Because they are created in a lab setting to be nature identical, there is no risk of high heavy metal contamination. This ensures that the colorants are safe for people to put onto and into their body. This is important for the cosmetic industry where products are applied topically to your largest organ (your skin!) or sometimes even ingested (hello lip products!). Synthetic micas also make a huge impact on the process piece of the product life cycle. Because they are created in a lab setting there is absolutely no risk of using unethical child labor.
Going forward, Au Naturale will use a combination of natural and synthetic mica.” Read more at Au Naturale