Last Updated on April 9, 2021 by Eco Elsie
There are so many options when it comes to beauty brands these days, with thousands of companies offering different products, messages, and brands to consume.
With so many on the market, it can be hard to find the right ones for you, along with some that align with your personal and moral belief systems.
One of the most prevalent beauty brands found around the world is Benefit Cosmetics.
Benefit Cosmetics is a San Francisco born beauty brand founded by two sisters from Indiana. The Ford twins, were successful models turned makeup artists, who moved to San Francisco to open up their own makeup shop.
The main mentality behind the brand is ‘laughter is the best cosmetic’ and the company aims to create a feelgood business that not only helps consumers look good in their skin, but feel good too.
The brand has since expanded all around the world, and is sold in over 30 countries, with over 2,000 Benefit Cosmetics counters worldwide.
The company now not only sells cosmetics, but also skin care products, fragrances, and offers beauty services from eyebrow waxing to airbrush spray tanning. But, is Benefit cruelty free?
Is Benefit Cruelty Free?
Despite the company’s immense popularity, Benefit is unfortunately not completely cruelty free. This means that the brand may test on animals either by themselves, through their suppliers, or through third party animal testing.
In addition, Benefit Cosmetics may also be funding animal testing in countries such as Mainland China, where animal testing is required by law for products to be sold there.
Benefit themselves states that ‘Benefit does not test our products on animals’ however, this is not to say that they are cruelty free. The reality is that yes, Benefit does not test products on animals, or permit others to, except when it is required by law for them to be tested on animals.
Therefore, Benefit is not cruelty free.
In the company’s official statement, Benefit said:
‘since 1989, the Perfumes & Cosmetics companies of LVMH group’ (owners of Benefit) ‘have not performed any tests on animals for our products- this was implemented long before the 2013 official ban set by the European Union. We are deeply committed to the elimination of animal testing. We’re playing a leading role in developing alternative methods through our support of the “Fund For Alternatives To Animal Testing” in the United States.’
The company also goes on to say that all of their products ‘undergo strict tolerance tests using non animal methods during the development of each product’ to ensure the safety of their products.
Whilst Benefit seem to care deeply about the ban against animal testing, they do go on to say that they supply and sell product in China, where the Chinese health authorities order tests on animals in order to make their products available in the country.
It is for this reason that, although Benefit seems to show some concern towards animal testing, and argues that they fund alternatives, they still sell in Mainland China, which means that they fund third parties to engage in animal testing.
This is therefore inherently not cruelty free, which is why the brand is not certified as cruelty free at all.
Is Benefit Vegan?
Along with being non cruelty free, Benefit Cosmetics are not 100% vegan friendly either. Although they do offer some vegan products, made with vegan ingredients and vegan processes, many of their products are made with lanolin, beeswax, glycerin and many other animal by products.
Unfortunately, many of Benefits products are unclear as to whether they are vegan or not, so it is very hard to differentiate which ones would be suitable for a vegan lifestyle.
We would recommend that you exercise caution with Benefit Cosmetics, and use your own judgement, as although some of the products may not have animal ingredients or by products in them, we know that Benefit themselves test on animals, or contribute to animal testing, which most likely goes against your beliefs towards veganism and animal cruelty.
Is Benefit An Ethical Company?
Whilst benefit claims to be a company inspired by laughter and happiness, we cannot claim that it is in fact ethical. Benefit Cosmetics have made it explicitly clear that they test their products on animals where this is required by law, and so we cannot really argue that it is an ethical brand.
That being said, in Benefit’s Modern Slavery Statement, the company conveys its policies and practices that it is committed ‘to act with integrity in all its business dealings, and to promote ethical conduct, to enhance compliance with applicable laws and to provide guidance with respect to business conduct’.
Their policy also states that they are continuing to commit to ‘acting ethically and with integrity in all our business relationships and to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure slavery and human trafficking is not taking place anywhere in our supply chains.’
Does Benefit Test On Animals?
Unfortunately, yes, Benefit Cosmetics do test on animals. However, they themselves do not test on animals, and state that they are committed to finding alternative routes regarding cosmetic testing worldwide.
This is down to the fact that Benefit Cosmetics sell their products in countries where animal testing is required by law, and make their brand available in such countries where this practice takes place. It is for this reason that Benefit cannot claim to be vegan or cruelty free.
Are Benefit Products Toxic?
There is little evidence to show that Benefit products are toxic, however, their products are not marketed as hypoallergenic or non comedogenic.
This means that their products are likely to cause allergic reactions in some consumers, and can cause pimples, blackheads or breakout. This could largely be down to the fact that they do not use a whole lot of natural ingredients, as benefit does not claim to do so.