Products I love vs my own personal morals

Posted on 18.03.2011


I made the decision some time ago to only use products that are not tested on animals. This includes their ingredients, which is often where companies can claim ‘we don’t test’, even if a third party is testing ingredients somewhere else on animals. That’s dishonesty, to me, when a company claims they don’t test, but still lets their partners do so.

It’s very easy to go online and find out which companies test and which don’t. So, while shopping, the owner of a smart phone can pretty quickly find out whether the product they’re looking at is ‘good’ or not.

I thought my bathroom products were all ‘good’. So imagine my surprise when three of the products I use regularly turned out to be ‘not good’. My deoderant, Wella hair products and my Sensodyne toothpaste. I don’t know how I missed these three. I’ve been buying Sensodyne and my deoderant for years. The Wella products were new. I imagine I was so excited to actually FIND Wella haircare products that I forgot to check them out.

So I ended up realizing I wasn’t aware of their stances and decided to google them the other day.

My deoderant is from Dial Corp. I googled ‘Dial Corp test on animals’. ALL of the google results that turned up were ‘tests on animals’ lists. Great. I went to their website, and they weren’t advertising about NOT testing on animals, which is a giveaway, even if they don’t say they test outright.

Then I googled GlaxoSmithKline, the makers of Sensodyne, and got THIS. And, shockingly enough, even though they test on animals, I really appreciate this entire page devoted to the subject in the FAQs. This is really well written and at least they recognize that they are in the middle of a big debate. I commend them for this page. Other companies could learn a lot from GSK.

Then I googled Procter and Gamble, and got the same result as Dial Corp: Tests on Animals lists.

And after all of this disappointment, I finally googled the Body Shop and visited their website to see if they’ve made any comments about being bought by a company notorious for pushing animal testing off most countries’ legal agendas. They have. And they still don’t test. And they’ve won awards for NOT testing.

I was SO excited to find Wella products. I was so excited to stock up on my deoderant back in the states. And now I’ve got the products and I don’t want to use them. I’ve already spent the money on them, and this is where my subject comes in: The money has been spent, I’ve already inadvertently supported animal testing. I don’t plan to use the unopened Wella hair products and have instead put them in my ‘Visitors’ toiletries bin, for when others come to the house and need shampoo and conditioner. The stuff works great, I just don’t want to use it now. I think I will use the deoderant though, since I bought 3 sticks and that’s a lot to be sitting in the visitors bin, since it takes me FOREVER to get through even one stick. I will put at least one in there for the visitors though.

My issue with buying vegan/cruelty-free is generally reserved for new products: When I am buying things used (like clothing), the money has already been spent. I like to buy things used because it’s a green alternative to creating a greater demand for things that are not sustainable. I’m no longer supporting the cruelty or illegal logging that may have taken place, even if I am still supporting the person that initially supported it. If someone gives me a gift that may have been animal tested, my lines are blurry: they spent the money, and I don’t like to waste things. So I am not sure why I feel so inclined to NOT use the Wella products now that I’ve bought them. Because that seems to go against my ‘the money’s already been spent’ idea. I think I need to rethink that idea, period. I don’t like to half-ass things.

I’m almost out of toothpaste. Believe it or not, the toothpaste is where I have major issue. I have really sensitive teeth and am going to need to find an alternative that is NOT tested on animals, something for ‘rebuilding’. I’m not sure if that even exists. But I’m going to look for it. It’s on my weekend ‘to do’ list. But if I can’t find it, I’m not sure what to do.

One thing is certain: the Body Shop in Würzburg just won a customer back. I wonder if they make toothpaste.

Posted in: animal testing