By Caitlin Pelletier

Animals like rats, rabbits and birds are tested on and nearly 100 million of those used as test subjects die per year in the US from being tested on. US laws allow the animals to be burned, shocked, poisoned and even brain damaged when being tested on. Cosmetic animal testing is used on products from shampoos, soaps, deodorants, makeups and more.

The results of animal tests are not very reliable because of the differences between human and animal cells, anatomy and metabolisms. The differences cause inaccurate test results that have no way of predicting how the product will actually react on humans. Animal testing is no longer needed due to the wide variety of alternatives available. Artificial skins such as ThinCert and EpiDerm can be grown in labs and are identical to real human skin. Using this alternative will allow for more accurate test results and take away the need for animal testing. Claims have been made supporting animal testing using the idea that animal testing eliminates the need to test on and harm humans. Because humans are capable of giving permission to be used as a test subject, they are a more humane and morally acceptable form of testing. Humans also provide a better test subject because the test results will predict the actual results of using the product on human skin. Companies that label their products as ‘cruelty-free” are mainly referring to their finished product and not the ingredients used to make it, meaning that even products thought to be cruelty-free are not.

So many alternatives – such as using artificial skins and human test subjects- are so widely available that animal testing is no longer a necessary form of testing. By boycotting products that have been tested on animals and only using products that are truly cruelty-free, animal testing will not be supported and 100 million animals lives would be saved per year in the US only.