Is Philosophy Cruelty-Free: Philosophy Is Not Vegan And Cruelty-Free

Philosophy is a North American cosmetics and skincare brand founded by Christina Carlino in 1996. Carlino was the founder of Bio Medic, a professional skincare line intended to be used by dermatologists and plastic surgeons. Philosophy was founded as a result of Carlino’s years of experience in medical skin care.

Philosophy was firstly available only at Barneys New York. Still, it later expanded to other retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom. The brand reached fame when Carlino appeared in an episode of the Oprah Winfrey Show, and Oprah continued promoting the brand month after.

Today, Philosophy’s products can be found in various retail stores, such as Sephora. Philosophy was also the first skincare brand that partnered with QVC.

Is Philosophy Cruelty-Free?

Not sold in China? No
PETA Certified No
Leaping Bunny Certified No
Has vegan products No
Not owned by a Parent Company that does Animal Testing? No

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Philosophy is not a cruelty-free brand.

Philosophy doesn’t test its finished products on animals. However, it is uncertain whether its ingredients and suppliers are cruelty-free. As most animal testing is done on the ingredient level, this by itself is concerning. The brand claims that it doesn’t pay a third-party to conduct tests on Philosophy’s behalf.

However, the brand does pay for third-party testing in countries where animal testing is required for imported products. This means the company doesn’t mind third-party testing, as long as it’s getting paid.

Suppose you like Philosophy’s products but can’t support a brand that isn’t cruelty-free. If that’s the case, you can always contact the brand’s representatives and politely ask them to reconsider their animal testing policy. Just remember always to stay respectful, as hate speech never accomplishes anything.

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Are Philosophy products sold in China?

Yes, Philosophy sells its products in mainland China.

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What is the Deal with China?

Even though animal testing is proven to be an unnecessary and unethical practice, some countries still require it by law. This is the case with the second-biggest market in the world, China.

China requires any beauty product to be tested on animals before allowing importation and being sold in Chinese stores. Any company or brand that makes the decision to sell in China has also decided to test on animals – either by themselves or, usually, by paying a third-party company to test on their behalf. This is the main reason why a lot of brands can’t achieve a true cruelty-free status. After growing public outrage, China did lift some regulations in 2014, which allowed certain beauty products, such as shampoos and other skincare items, to be imported without testing, but this is still a small percentage.

A lot of brands that claim to be cruelty-free are being misleading thanks to these laws. Even if a brand doesn’t conduct animal testing on its own, by deciding to take the opportunity and sell in countries such as China, it is allowing a third-party to test the final product on animals. This is why PETA and the Leaping Bunny Program have forbidden brands that they certify to expand their market in this direction – and rightfully so.

A lot of companies are working with the Chinese government on lifting these regulations, and legislation was proposed in 2019 that should stop mandatory animal testing. However until today, no substantial progress has been made in this regard, we continue to wait patiently.


Is Philosophy Vegan?

No, Philosophy is not a vegan brand. Most of its products contain some animal-derived ingredients or animal by-products.

Who owns Philosophy and does the parent company test on animals?

In 2010, Coty Inc. purchased Philosophy. Coty Inc. is an American multinational company that is not cruelty-free. However, as Coty Inc. owns several cruelty-free brands, we can conclude the decision to conduct animal testing was on Philosophy alone.

What products does Philosophy sell?

Philosophy started by selling facial cleanser, the product that can still be found in stores today. It quickly expanded its product line on other skincare items, such as lotions and oils. In 1997, the brand launched its fragrance line before venturing into bath products, including shower gel, shampoo, and bubble baths. Next to that, Philosophy sells color cosmetics and body products, as well. It even includes some ‘super-sized’ versions of several items!

Philosophy is easily differentiated from other similar brands by the inspirational names of its products, such as Renewed Hope in a Jar, Purity Made Simple, and When Hope Is Not Enough. Each product has an emotional line on its packaging.

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