Babyganics (SC Johnson)

Last Updated: April 26, 2023

How Ethical Is Babyganics (SC Johnson)?

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 Babyganics' ethics and initiatives.

Ethical Analysis

Is Babyganics cruelty-free or vegan? Here’s what we know! Read below for more details on Babyganics’ policies.
It is currently unclear whether Babyganics is truly cruelty-free.
Babyganics does sell its products in stores in mainland China.
Because Babyganics’ cruelty-free status is unclear, we would not consider any of their products vegan at this time.

Babyganics (SC Johnson)

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Is Babyganics Cruelty-Free?

❓It is unclear whether Babyganics is truly cruelty-free or animal-tested. Therefore, Babyganics is listed as Grey AreaBrands with Unclear Policies.

To be a truly cruelty-free brand, companies must meet all of the following:

  • Company does not test its products or ingredients on animals or ask others to test on its behalf
  • Company can ensure none of its ingredient suppliers test on animals
  • Company does not allow or sell its products under conditions where animal testing is required by law

Based on our research, Babyganics has not met all of the above cruelty-free criteria. For those reasons, we are unable to classify Babyganics as a truly cruelty-free brand.

Learn more about our findings and why Babyganics’s cruelty-free policy is unclear below.

Babyganics’ Animal Testing Policy

When asking, does Babyganics test on animals? We must look beyond to ensure none of Babyganics’ ingredients or suppliers test on animals. And they don’t sell in any country or under conditions that may require animal testing by law.

To assess whether brands are cruelty-free, I always start with the company’s official animal testing policy on their website.

Babyganics’ homepage states “as always, cruelty free formulas, products not tested on animals” and their Who We Are page claims “Parents have enough to worry about – the products you use shouldn’t be on that list. That’s why we don’t test on animals and we don’t use certain ingredients – sulfates, phthalates, parabens or synthetic fragrances to name a few.”

However, this is not enough information for us to classify Babyganics or any other brand as being cruelty-free to our standards.

That’s because animal testing for cosmetics can happen at various stages of product development, including at the ingredient level, and is often done by others and not the company itself.

This is why we always assess a company’s cruelty-free policy using our Cruelty-Free Checklist. This ensures no animal testing was performed by the brand, its suppliers, or any third parties.

So I reached out to Babyganics to ask for more information about their animal testing policy. More specifically, I wanted to know if they commission or allow others to test, not just their finished products but their ingredients on animals, including when selling in countries that require animal testing (like mainland China).

And Babyganics responded by saying:

We do have some Babyganics® products sold in China but none of our products are tested on animals – so we are cruelty-free. Almost all of our products are free from animal-derived ingredients, however, there are a few exceptions listed here: Babyganics uses Beeswax (derived from Honeycomb) in our Moisturizing Daily Lotion, Diaper Rash Cream, Pure Mineral Sunscreen Stick. Additionally, we don’t have data or a specific policy on if the specific ingredients were tested on animals and when.

The part in Babyganics’ response that’s a red flag to me was how they claim to be cruelty-free while selling their products in China.

But Doesn’t China No Longer Test on Animals?

With the recent changes to China’s animal testing laws, cosmetic companies can now export and sell some of their cosmetics in China without animal testing only if they meet ALL of the following preconditions first.

  • ONLY sell ‘general’ cosmetics (like makeup, skincare, haircare, nail polish, and perfumes)
  • must NOT sell any ‘special’ cosmetics like sunscreens, hair dye, hair perming, or other cosmetics claiming new efficacy
  • must NOT sell products designed for infants or children
  • must NOT sell products that contain a ‘New Cosmetic Ingredient’
  • AND if post-market testing is required, then the company must have a policy in place where it will RECALL its products rather than allow its products to be tested on animals

Also, products must meet ONE of the following in order to avoid animal testing in China:

  • manufactured in China, or the final assembly is in China
  • if manufactured outside of China and then exported to China, companies must obtain the proper product safety certificates and documents

However, Babyganics offers baby products, which are not exempt from animal testing in China. I asked Babyganics if they could clarify how they’re able to sell their baby products in China without animal testing but they stopped responding to my inquiries.

Because Babyganics was unable to clarify what steps they have taken to avoid animal testing while selling in China, we are unable to classify Babyganics as a truly cruelty-free brand.

Cruelty-Free Policies

Just because a brand claims they are ‘Cruelty-Free,’ doesn’t always mean that’s the case.

That’s because 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, or any third parties.

Is Babyganics Certified Cruelty-Free?

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

Since Babyganics is not certified cruelty-free by a third party, no one is substantiating or auditing Babyganics’ cruelty-free commitments and claims.

Is Babyganics Owned By A Non-Cruelty-Free Parent Company?

Yes. Babyganics is owned by SC Johnson, a parent corporation that still engages in animal testing in 2023.

Some cruelty-free consumers may choose to purchase and support cruelty-free brands owned by animal-tested parent corporations as they hope it will convince the parent company to become cruelty-free.

But in this case, Babyganics is NOT cruelty-free, and neither is its parent corporation, SC Johnson.

Does Babyganics Test on Animals?

Unfortunately, Babyganics failed to clarify how they’re able to sell their baby products in China without animal testing.

As a result, we cannot classify Babyganics as a truly cruelty-free brand until they are more transparent with their animal testing policy while selling in China.

Currently, Babyganics is on our Grey Area Brands List – Brands with Unclear Policies.

Is Babyganics Vegan?

Babyganics is NOT vegan. Babyganics claims to offer some “vegan” options that are free of animal-derived ingredients, but because Babyganics’ cruelty-free status is unclear, we wouldn’t consider anything sold or produced by Babyganics to be vegan at this time.

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.

Vegan Policies

Similar to ‘Cruelty-Free,’ there is no standard or legal definition for the label ‘Vegan.’ But Vegan is generally used to mean formulated without animal-derived ingredients or animal by-products.

Some common animal products 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 unless a brand explicitly labels its ingredients or product as Vegan, it’s often 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 chose were from non-animal sources.

Cruelty-Free Alternatives to Babyganics

Looking to switch to cruelty-free products? Here are some cruelty-free brands to check out:

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