Em Cosmetics

Last Updated: August 25, 2022

How Ethical Is Em Cosmetics?

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 Em Cosmetics' ethics and initiatives.

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Ethical Analysis

Is Em Cosmetics cruelty-free, vegan, or sustainable? We’ve got the answers here! Read below for more details on Em Cosmetics’ policies.
Em Cosmetics is cruelty-free. None of Em Cosmetics ingredients, formulations, or finished products are tested on animals anywhere in the world.
Not all of Em Cosmetics products are vegan, but they have some vegan options.
Em Cosmetics does not claim or market itself as a sustainable company.
Em Cosmetics claims their mica is ethically sourced without child labor. See their ethical mica mining policy here.
Em Cosmetics products come in plastic packaging. And I couldn’t find anything stating they’re working on reducing their use of virgin plastic in their product packaging.

About Em Cosmetics

Makeup by EM Cosmetics from Michelle Phan.

Em Cosmetics

This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission.

You can find Em Cosmetics cruelty-free products at emcosmetics.com and on Amazon.

Em Cosmetics is Cruelty-Free

Em Cosmetics 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 Em Cosmetics to be Cruelty-Free.

Below is a screenshot of what’s currently stated on Em Cosmetics’ website about its animal testing policy:

Em Cosmetics is 100% cruelty-free! We do not test on animals, nor do we condone anyone else to test our products on animals.

What About China’s Animal Testing Laws?

Em Cosmetics has confirmed they do not sell their products in retail stores in mainland China; therefore, they are not required to test on animals.

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 2022.

Cruelty-Free Policies

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, or any third parties.

Also, note that Cruelty-Free and Vegan don’t always mean the same thing.

Em Cosmetics 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 Em Cosmetics, not all of their products are vegan. But they have some products that are suitable for vegans.

How to know which of Em Cosmetics products are vegan?

All of Em Cosmetics’ vegan products are clearly marked on their website. See below for an example.

How to know which of Em Cosmetics products are vegan.

In addition, Em Cosmetics has a list of all of their non-vegan products on their website’s FAQ page indicating which of their items contain carmine or beeswax. See below for a screenshot of what’s currently stated on this page.

You will be happy to know that almost all of EM's products are vegan with the following exceptions.

Vegan Policies

Similar to ‘Cruelty-Free,’ there is no standard or legal definition for the label ‘Vegan.’ But it usually means no 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.

Where are Em Cosmetics’ products made?

I asked Em Cosmetics where their products are manufactured and they told me:

“Michelle and our product development team work hard to find the best formulas and sometimes that requires working with manufacturers from different countries! For example, our Lip Cushion Tinted Luminizer is formulated in Japan in partnership with experts of enhanced hydrating formulas

Usually this information can be found on the product page, however, I am more than happy to find this information for you if you can provide the products you are inquiring about.”

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 the company discloses its mica mining policy, we have no way of knowing whether its mica is ethically sourced without child or forced labor.

So I asked Em Cosmetics if their mica is ethically sourced without the use of child labor and they responded by stating,

“Where Mica is present in Em formulas, Em requires a certification from raw material suppliers that mica is sourced ethically; specifically, that no child labor is employed in the sourcing of mica.”

I hope this article helped you to understand Em Cosmetics’ cruelty-free and vegan status and by choosing cruelty-free together, we can help end animal testing for cosmetics once and for all!

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