is kose cruelty free

Is Kose Cruelty-Free?

Does Kose test on animals or sell in China?

Kose is a Japanese cosmetics company that is a dominant presence in the Asian beauty market. In 2014, they expanded into America with the purchase of Tarte.  But is Kose cruelty-free or do they test on animals?

For a company to be considered cruelty-free they have to meet all of the following criteria:

  • Do not test any of their products or ingredients on animals
  • Don’t allow others to test on their behalf 
  • Do not sell in a country where animal testing is required. 

After doing a bit of research, I found that Kose doesn’t meet the above cruelty-free requirements and is not considered to be a cruelty-free parent company. 

Let’s look into what all of that really means and what you can do about it.

Is Kose Certified Cruelty-Free?

When researching a brand’s cruelty-free status my first stop is the certified cruelty-free list. There are three organizations that give official certifications to brands around the world; Leaping Bunny, Peta, and Choose Cruelty-Free.

Kose is not found on any of these organization’s cruelty-free lists. However, they are found on Peta’s list of brands to avoid.

kose peta

Does Kose Test on Animals?

The next step in my research is going directly to the company’s animal testing policy to see where they stand. Kose’s policy can be found in the ‘Society & Environment’ section of their website. Here is an excerpt of what it states:

“With safety as a top priority, KOSÉ Group designs and develops cosmetic products (including quasi-drugs) based on a policy for eliminating animal testing*.

We eliminate animal testing by utilizing a vast amount of safety data accumulated from our years of research and development activities. We have set unique safety criteria to ensure safety by taking advantage of alternative testing methods and human clinical studies.

*Except for cases where accountability for safety is demanded socially or requested by governmental authority/regulators.”

kose animal poilcy

Kose’s animal testing policy contradicts itself. It states that they do not test on animals and are trying to use alternative methods to ensure product safety. However, they do make an exception when a government’s health authority requires it. Therefore, Kose does allow animal testing on their products.

What About China’s New Animal Testing Laws?

China has announced that as of May 1, 2021, general cosmetics such as shampoo, body wash, lipstick, lotion, and makeup can be sold without being tested on animals. However, a company is required to jump through various hoops for this to happen. As of now, Kose has not been exempt and their products can still be tested on animals by the Chinese health authority. Even if an exemption happens it is still possible that the products can be subjected to post-market testing

What Brands Does Kose Own?

Kose is a multinational beauty company that owns several popular cosmetics brands. Below is a list of all the brands owned by them. 

Many people in the cruelty-free community choose to completely boycott any brand owned by a non-cruelty-free parent company. So, I try to provide as much information as possible so that you have the resources to make your own decision. 

So, I’ve indicated which brands are sold in China or are certified cruelty-free. I would err on the side of caution for any of the companies that don’t have additional information.

  • Addiction
  • Astaluxe
  • Awake
  • Avenir – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Bioliss
  • Carte Clinity
  • Clear Turn
  • Decorté – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Elsia
  • Esprique – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Fasio
  • Feliscent
  • Formule
  • Grace One
  • Imprea
  • Infinity – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Je l’aime
  • Jill Stuart – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Junkisei – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Kokutousei
  • Lecheri
  • Lip Gel Magic
  • Maihada
  • Make Keep Mist
  • Nailholic
  • Nature & Co – SOLD IN CHINA
  • One by Kose
  • Paul Stuart
  • Phil Naturant
  • Predia – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Recipeo – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Sekkisei Myv – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Sekkisei – SOLD IN CHINA
  • Softymo
  • SportsBeauty
  • Stephen Knoll New York
  • Suncut
  • Visee

Wrap Up: Is Kose Cruelty-Free?

No, Kose is not a cruelty-free cosmetics company. Even though they claim to not test on animals, they choose to sell in a country that requires imported cosmetics to be tested on animals.

Therefore, Kose is not considered to be cruelty-free. They will be added to my list of brands that test on animals. 

However, they do own some Peta certified cruelty-free beauty brands. But the choice is yours on whether you feel comfortable using them.

Now I’d like to hear from you…What are your thoughts about Kose? Will you boycott them completely or use some of their cruelty-free brands? Please leave your comments below!

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  1. I am totally disgusted that kose have a flexible approach to animal testing dependant on the country to satisfy their profits. To front themselves under the umbrella of being vegan is diabolical. I used to use Tarte cosmetics because they were vegan but have since discovered that they are not totally animal cruelty free and should not be allowed to portray themselves as this, especially in the uk. People purchase these products thinking that those products have been produced with no cruelty involved regardless of what country it is for. This advertising needs to be stopped.
    The majority of the world would rather these products are tested on human volunteers instead, there would be loads of volunteers ready to do this without any animal suffering. Please Kores stop animal testing, it appears to the public your company puts profit with pain.

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