Honest Beauty

Last Updated: September 7, 2022

How Ethical Is Honest Beauty?

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 Honest Beauty's ethics and initiatives.

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Ethical Analysis

Is Honest Beauty cruelty-free, vegan, or sustainable? We’ve got the answers here! Read below for more details on Honest Beauty’s policies.
Honest Beauty is cruelty-free. None of Honest Beauty’s ingredients, formulations, or finished products are tested on animals anywhere in the world.
Not all of Honest Beauty’s products are vegan, but they have some vegan options.
Honest Beauty states it strives to lessen its environmental footprint and minimize its impact by offsetting carbon emissions and working to responsibly source materials and packaging.

Some of Honest Beauty’s sustainability practices include:
  • Their shipping cartons are made from recycled cardboard
  • Their product packaging includes compostable tree-free paper, recyclable aluminum, tin, and glass
  • Participating in Carbon offset programs to reduce greenhouse gas emisions resulting from their domestic shipments
  • Their Clean Conscious diapers are made from sustainably harvested fluff pulp which they claim saves 7,000 trees every single year
  • Their Conscious Cleaning line utilizes refillable bottles. As a result, it saves 1.8 lbs of water being shipped per bottle, and allowing customers to use over 85% less plastic in two years
  • Honest Beauty claims their mica is ethically sourced without child labor. See their ethical mica mining policy here.
    Honest Beauty’s products come in either PCR plastic, glass jars, refillable tin compacts, aluminum tubes, and/or tree free paper.

    About Honest Beauty

    Honest Beauty offers clean beauty products that will keep you feeling confident each day.
    PRODUCTS MADE IN: USA, Italy, China
    PRODUCTS: Makeup, Makeup Brushes, Skincare

    Honest Beauty

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

    You can find Honest Beauty cruelty-free products at honest.com, Ulta, Target, and on Amazon.

    Honest Beauty is Cruelty-Free

    Honest Beauty 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 Honest Beauty to be Cruelty-Free.

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

    What About China’s Animal Testing Laws?

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

    “With regards to the animal testing requirements in China, that only applies to products sold there – not products that are simply manufactured there and then exported for sale in other countries. Our products are not tested on animals nor sold in China at this time.”

    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.

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

    How to know which of Honest Beauty products are vegan?

    All of Honest Beauty’s vegan products are clearly marked on their website.

    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 Honest Beauty’s products made?

    I asked Honest Beauty where their products are manufactured and they told me:

    “Thank you for your question. Most of the Honest Beauty products are manufactured in the USA. The below list includes products manufactured outside of the USA:

    Luminizing Powder – Made in Italy

    Refreshingly Clean Makeup Remover Wipes – Made in China 

    Buffing Brush – Made in China”

    *Note: Cosmetics made in China are not required to be tested on animals. Only cosmetics that are imported and sold in physical stores in mainland China are required to be tested on animals according to China’s animal testing laws.

    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 Honest Beauty if their mica is ethically sourced without the use of child labor and they responded by stating,

    “All of our products undergo a battery of stringent tests, notably product integrity, which includes stability and microbiology, and product safety which includes skin patching. At Honest, we work with trusted suppliers and manufacturers. We require our contract manufacturers to attest and confirm that all mica used in the products has been ethically sourced and is in compliance with all labor and child labor laws relating to hiring, wages, working hours, over-time and working environment, as well as the California Transparency in Supply Chain Act. We also aim to partner with contract manufacturers that are members of the Responsible Mica Initiative, an effort which works to eradicate child labor and unacceptable working conditions in the Indian mica supply chain.

    The Honest Company was built around the ethical values of transparency, trust, sustainability and a deep sense of purpose — we continue to live those values by delivering safe and effective products sources from credible manufacturers. Thank you!”

    I hope this article helped you to understand Honest Beauty’s 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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