Back in May I wrote a post titled Is SwiitchBeauty Really Cruelty Free?. I “target” (I don’t mean to sound like a predator here) South African brands who claim to be cruelty-free, but have little to no information about it on the Internet (I mean, MAC calls themselves cruelty-free but they’re not even close). It happened to be one of my most successful blog posts, and I can understand why- more and more people want to go cruelty-free, but more and more people are also aware of how companies blatantly mislead (LIE to) the public and they don’t want to support unethical brands. Chances are, you clicked on this post because you want to know if Kiki Beauty are liars (right?). I do get nervous about writing these posts because they contain important information that one cannot find anywhere else on the Internet, so it’s just me and my own research (no influence from other blogs), but in the end it all comes down to whether or not you trust the brand.
Kiki Beauty is a South African skincare brand. Their products are made in South Africa and are all paraben free, sulphate free, mineral oil free, petrolatum free, and cruelty-free (love it!). You can read more about their ranges of products and mission statement here. Like I’ve said over and over again, there is no set definition for the term “cruelty-free“, so this is how companies mislead you. However, here’s what you need to know if you want to assume that a brand is cruelty-free:
- The products should not be tested on animals at any point during production, including ingredients and the finished product.
- The company should not test on animals.
- The suppliers should not test on animals.
- Third parties should not test on animals on the company’s behalf.
- The company should not test on animals when required by law.
- The products should not be sold in mainland China (where animal testing is required by law).
I emailed Kiki Beauty with my usual list of questions that I copied from Cruelty-Free Kitty, so here are the questions and answers in a nutshell:
- Can you guarantee that your products are not tested on animals at any point during production, from the ingredients to the finished product? *See email below
- Can you guarantee your company does not test on animals? Yes
- Can you guarantee that none of your suppliers test on animals? *See email below
- Can you guarantee that no third parties test on animals on behalf of your company? Yes
- Do you test on animals where required by law? No
- Are your products sold in mainland China? No
Here’s the email from Holly:
We buy all our ingredients from South African agent representatives. These agents obtain our ingredients mostly from Europe which have very strict regulatory processes against testing on animals.
We are in the process of applying for the cruelty free official label but until we have received the documentation on every ingredient we cannot legally guarantee it.
However our formulator and ourselves are 100 % against animal cruelty and have done our best to choose suppliers and ingredients which are either approved by Ecocert or 100% natural.
2) We can guarantee our company does not test on animals
3) Please see above
4) We can guarantee that no third parties test on animals on behalf of ourselves
5) We will never condone animal testing even if it is required by law.
6) Our products are only sold in South Africa. We will never allow our products to be sold in China as then we would be obliged to allow animal testing
I understand that this may not be enough for many of you, but I understand that Kiki Beauty are simply protecting themselves by not legally guaranteeing it. They aren’t certified after all. However, Holly did mention that they are in the process of applying for a cruelty-free label, which makes a big difference when it comes down to trusting the brand. I did inquire about this, and here is what she said:
I have applied and am currently filling out all the details of the application and gathering all the paper work. So hopefully it will be completed this year. The problem is that the Leaping Bunny certification we are applying for is very backed up with applications from all over the world. So once we have submitted everything it is in their hands 🙂
So hopefully this process will be completed as soon as possible.
The fact that Kiki Beauty are in the process of getting a cruelty-free label is what sets them apart from brands such as SwiitchBeauty or even Essence. It shows us that they are transparent and serious about never testing on animals, so they have really gained my respect. Holly was so quick to respond to my emails and her tone suggested that she is a huge animal-lover. Unfortunately I cannot guarantee that Kiki Beauty is 100% cruelty-free, but I will update this post the second I hear that they have gotten their label or if new information comes up. Whether or not you choose to support them now or after they get their label is up to you.
Do you prefer to buy from brands who are certified cruelty-free, or are you satisfied with only their word?
If you would like to see more of my Are They Cruelty-Free? series, click here.