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Caudalie is a French skincare company known for their nourishing skincare products harnessing extracts from the grape and grapevine, but is Caudalie cruelty-free?
Is Caudalie Cruelty-Free?
Caudalie is NOT Cruelty-free. Caudalie pays and allows their products to be tested on animals when required by law. Caudalie also sells its products in stores in mainland China where animal testing is mandatory for most imported cosmetics.
Caudalie’s Animal Testing Policy
It seems as though Caudalie has made some changes to their animal testing statement since the original publication of this post (Jan 2018). But please note that Caudalie’s animal testing policy has not changed, they have just worded their statement differently.
Caudalie is still not considered to be a cruelty-free brand because their products are still tested on animals when required by law in mainland China.
Below is what’s currently stated on Caudalie’s company’s website:
Caudalie claims “in China, where our products are distributed, authorities may impose random animal testing.”
This means that Caudalie confirms their products are indeed sold in mainland China where animal testing is mandatory and unavoidable for most imported cosmetics.
Therefore, Caudalie was required to submit and register their products to be tested on animals in China before they could sell in their country.
Caudalie has always sold its products in China with the full understanding and knowledge that its products had to be tested on animals. Don’t believe me? See below a screenshot I took from Caudalie’s company website in 2018 stating,
“We do not deny that our products are actually sold in China. Sadly, nowadays no cosmetic brand exporting to China can obtain any certificate from Chinese authorities that guarantees no animal testing.”
I also reached out to Caudalie in 2018 to inquire about their animal testing policy and was provided with the following statement:
“Caudalie is against animal testing. Therefore, we have never tested and will never test any ingredient or product on animals.
Since it was founded in 1995 Caudalie has always observed the founding principles of its « Cosm’ethics », which include respecting the skin and protection of the environment and the animals, while at the same time offering effective formulas.
It is indeed true that we sell our products in China. Unfortunately, no cosmetic brand selling its products in China can obtain a certificate from the Chinese authorities guaranteeing that tests have not been performed on animals in China by the Chinese government.”
Because of Caudalie’s decision to sell its products in-stores in mainland China, they must consent and pay the Chinese government to test their products on animals. That’s why most cosmetics brands selling in mainland China retail stores cannot be considered cruelty-free.
Although Caudalie may not be conducting these animal tests themselves, they are knowingly allowing Chinese authorities to test their products on animals in order to sell in China.
Many truly cruelty-free brands have chosen not to sell their products in China because of the country’s animal testing laws. Unfortunately, Caudalie refuses to do the same and has decided to put profits before the welfare of animals.
Summary: Caudalie is NOT Cruelty-Free!
By choosing to sell in mainland China, Caudalie must have their products tested on animals. Therefore I would not consider Caudalie to be a cruelty-free brand.
Caudalie is on our List of Brands to Avoid – Animal Tested.
Is Caudalie Vegan?
Since we would not consider Caudalie to be cruelty-free as their products are tested on animals when required by law, we also wouldn’t consider anything sold or manufactured by Caudalie to be vegan.
Because Caudalie products and ingredients are tested on animals, when required by law, Caudalie is not considered to be vegan by our standards.
Since there is no standard or legal definition for the “vegan” label for cosmetics, Caudalie can claim that most of their products are “vegan” and do not contain any animal-derived ingredients. This is misleading because Caudalie is not even cruelty-free as they do test on animals when required by law and therefore, they shouldn’t be classifying their products as being vegan.
This is another example of a brand claiming their products are “vegan” when they’re not actually cruelty-free.
There is a difference between cosmetics labeled as “cruelty-free” and “vegan” which you can find more information and a thorough explanation about the difference in this post.
I also noticed Sephora listing some of Caudalie products in their “Vegan Skincare” category but note that Caudalie is NOT cruelty-free. Caudalie products are tested on animals.
I’m assuming 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 Caudalie
There are plenty of cruelty-free and natural skincare alternatives to Caudalie, here are some of my personal cruelty-free recommendations:
- Tata Harper – some vegan options
- Herbivore – 100% Vegan
- Drunk Elephant *owned by Shiseido –some vegan options
- OSEA – 100% Vegan
- Juice Beauty – some vegan options