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Communications of the ACM


New Models in Cosmetics Replacing Animal Testing

animal testing rodent

A test subject? Not in Europe, which banned the use of animal testing in the development of cosmetic ingredients last year.

Credit: Janet Stephens / National Cancer Institute

Last year, a long-planned European Union ban on using animals to test the safety of cosmetic ingredients went into effect. The motivation for the new rule stems in part from concerns about the ethics of testing the safety of chemicals on living creatures, but scientists say there is more at play here than a moral conundrum.

Reliance on animal testing, according to several experts, has actually hindered the evaluation of many chemicals and ingredients inside and outside the cosmetics industry. Animal-based tests take too long and are too expensive, they say, often requiring several years and millions of dollars or more to carry out.


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