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Vichy is NOT Cruelty-Free!
Vichy allows its products or ingredients to be tested on animals when required by law including when selling in stores in mainland China.
Vichy’s Animal Testing Policy
While researching to learn more about Vichy’s cruelty-free status, I couldn’t find the brand’s official animal testing policy anywhere on its website.
So I reached out to Vichy to ask for more information about their animal testing policy. More specifically, I wanted to know if they commission or allow others to test their products/ingredients on animals, including when selling in countries that require animal testing (like in mainland China).
And Vichy responded by saying:
“Vichy, a brand of the L’Oréal Group, does not test any of its products or any of its ingredients on animals and has been at the forefront of alternative methods for over 30 years.
In 1989, L’Oréal completely ceased testing its products on animals, 14 years before it was required by regulation. Today, L’Oréal no longer tests its ingredients on animals. L’Oréal no longer tolerates any exception to this rule.”
Based on their response, it turns out that Vichy is owned by L’Oreal. And Vichy has the same animal testing policy as L’Oreal.
However, what’s missing from Vichy’s response is the rest of L’Oreal’s animal testing policy, which you can find on their corporate website here.
“In 1989, L’Oréal completely ceased testing its products on animals, 14 years before it was required by regulation. Today, L’Oréal no longer tests its ingredients on animals. L’Oréal no longer tolerates any exception to this rule.
Certain health authorities may nevertheless decide to conduct animal tests themselves for certain cosmetic products, as it is still the case in China. L’Oréal is the most active company working alongside the Chinese authorities and scientists for over 10 years to have alternative testing methods recognized, and permit the cosmetic regulation to evolve towards a total and definite elimination of animal testing. Thanks to this, since 2014, certain products manufactured and sold in China like shampoo, body wash or certain make-up products are no longer tested on animals.”
Policies stating China’s animal testing laws usually imply the company is selling its products in mainland China. That’s because cosmetics sold in stores in mainland China are required by law to be tested on animals.
And that is specifically the case for L’Oreal and why L’Oreal is NOT cruelty-free. That also goes for many of L’Oreal’s brands including SkinCeuticals, YSL, Lancome, Kiehl’s, Giorgio Armani, La Roche-Posay, and many more selling their products in China.
So, is that the case for Vichy?
Is Vichy Sold in China?
In my research, I discovered that Vichy products are indeed sold in stores in mainland China.
Below is a screenshot of Vichy’s Chinese website:
But Doesn’t China No Longer Tests on Animals?
Companies can bypass China’s pre-market animal testing by choosing to manufacture their ordinary or general cosmetics in China, but it’s not stated anywhere that Vichy has taken this route.
Additionally, the possibility of post-market animal testing is not completely ruled out and may be conducted on some cosmetics sold in physical stores in China.
As of May 1, 2021, cosmetic companies can also export and sell their ordinary or general cosmetics in China without animal testing only if they meet a set of preconditions first. However, meeting these conditions has proven difficult, and it’s still unclear what exactly is accepted according to the new regulations. So there’s no word yet of any company that has successfully done so.
Follow the highlighted lines in the graphic below to see why most cosmetics sold in China (like Vichy) are still required by law to be tested on animals in 2022.
Because Vichy has decided to sell in mainland China stores, they must consent and pay to have their products tested on animals. That’s why most cosmetics brands selling in mainland China cannot be considered cruelty-free in 2022.
Although Vichy may not be conducting these animal tests themselves, they knowingly allow Chinese authorities to test their products on animals to sell in China.
For those reasons, we would not consider Vichy to be cruelty-free by our standards.
Many truly cruelty-free brands have chosen not to sell their products in China because of its animal testing laws. Unfortunately, Vichy refuses to do the same and therefore cannot be considered cruelty-free.
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, including when required by law.
See below for our complete cruelty-free checklist. Since Vichy already does not meet the last two, we cannot classify the brand as being cruelty-free.
Is Vichy Certified Cruelty-Free?
Vichy is not certified cruelty-free by any third-party cruelty-free certifications like Leaping Bunny or PETA.
Because Vichy is not certified cruelty-free by a third party, no one is looking into or substantiating Vichy’s cruelty-free commitments and claims.
Is Vichy Owned By A Non-Cruelty-Free Parent Company?
Yes. Vichy is owned by L’Oreal, a parent corporation that still engages in animal testing in 2022.
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, Vichy is NOT cruelty-free and neither is its parent corporation, L’Oreal.
Is Vichy Cruelty-Free?
To sum up, by choosing to sell in mainland China, Vichy must have its products tested on animals. Therefore, we would NOT consider Vichy to be a cruelty-free brand.
Currently, Vichy is on our List of Brands to Avoid – Animal Tested.
Is Vichy Vegan?
Vichy does not claim or market itself to offer any vegan-friendly options. And since Vichy engages in animal testing, we wouldn’t consider anything sold or produced by Vichy to be vegan anyways.
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.
Cruelty-Free Alternatives to Vichy
Looking to switch to cruelty-free products? Here are some cruelty-free brands to check out:
- Leonor Greyl
- Balade en Provence
- Youth to the People *owned by L’Oreal