OPI and Essie: Animal Testing & Email From PETA

How cute is this guy?

I know by now most polish addicts are aware of the recent sales of OPI to Coty and Essie to L’Oreal. This has created a lot of talk about what’s going to happen with the future of those 2 brands. We’ve already seen Essie start becoming widely available in places like Walmart. Some of the concerns regarding the sales involve the animal testing practices of both Coty and L’Oreal. As far as we know, both companies engage in animal testing with their products and many of us have been concerned that this would tarnish the image of OPI and Essie.

With Death By Polish, Liz and I do are trying to do our best not to support any companies that participate in animal testing, so needless to say we were invested in learning what this meant for OPI and Essie. After not hearing anything after about a month or two, we decided to seek out some better information as to what the new animal testing policies would be for OPI and Essie.

For the most part, I use the “Do” and “Don’t Test” lists of companies compiled by PETA because I feel they are well researched and as up to date as possible. It’s very easy to find competing information about who does and does not test on animals nowadays. I noticed that their lists had not changed the status of OPI or Essie so I e-mailed someone at PETA and wanted to share the results I got with everyone so you can have access to the same information and take from it what you will and make your own choices.

Here’s what I wrote to PETA:

“Recently, two formerly cruelty free nail polish companies, Essie and OPI, were bought out by larger, animal testing companies, L’Oreal and Coty (respectively). I haven’t seen any specific statements made by the purchasing companies related to keeping these lines cruelty free. I am wondering what the statuses of Essie and OPI are now? Are they changing or have they already changed to being considered “Do-test” companies? I’d appreciate any information you can give me as to the animal testing policy of Essie or OPI after their purchase. Thank you! -Lauren”

And here’s some of the information I received from them, which was extremely helpful:

“We are very pleased to report that PETA has received written confirmation from OPI assuring us that its animal-testing policy will not change and that its products will remain cruelty-free. We feel that it’s imperative for consumers to continue buying OPI products in order to support the company’s anti-testing stance and to show parent companies that the market for cruelty-free products is huge. Unfortunately, Essie has not responded yet to our inquiries about whether it will remain cruelty-free. We would remove Essie from our cruelty-free list if we do not receive an updated statement from them.

We are still asking caring consumers like you to ask L’Oréal to adopt compassionate, cruelty-free standards. You may use its Web form at http://www.loreal.com/_en/_ww/tools/contact/search/form_search.aspx, by calling 212-818-1500, or by writing to:

L’Oréal USA, Inc.

575 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY 10017
212-984-4999 (fax)”

I suggest anyone that’s concerned about the future of Essie contact L’Oreal with those concerns or if you have anymore questions about animal testing to ask representatives for PETA, as I’ve found them very helpful. If you’d like to see more information on animal testing or view “Do” and “Don’t Test” lists of companies, I recommend visiting http://www.peta.org/living/beauty-and-personal-care/companies/default.aspx




Filed under Essie, OPI

14 responses to “OPI and Essie: Animal Testing & Email From PETA

  1. Rachel

    This is a really awesome post. I actually hadn’t heard that they were bought out by those two companies before this and that’s some startling news to hear. I should have known something was up when I saw that OPI was available at my grocery store Publix. So strange! Glad to hear things seem to be staying on the same track. I hope that only good things come from this change! Thanks for putting the effort into finding out!

  2. Lyndsey

    What?!?!? Great post, thanks for the info. I’m really disappointed with the buy out. Essie is becoming my new fav. polish but if they start animal testing…I wont’t will continue buying it.

    BTW, I used to work for the Body Shop when they were bought out by L’Oreal. Now you don’t see the Cruelty-Free label on their products which I don’t buy anymore as well…

    • Interesting post! Concerning The Body Shop (sorry if I am OT) last Christmas I went to a store asking about their new policy and they handed me a leaflet (in my language, Italian – they told me they had many requested on this issue) explaining that they would have continued to be “cruelty free” and so on.
      I felt reassured but actually I think it’s strange that they can keep on doing what they want with that L’Oreal as owner.

  3. Thanks for this great post. I just linked it to my blog – I hope you don’t mind.

    Take care,

  4. I’ll also have to ask about the Body Shop’s new policy. Thanks for that info, I was unaware that they were bought by L’Oreal as well. I haven’t bought anything from there in awhile. The impression I got was that companies that already have done such a good business being cruelty free are maintained as such when bought out and kept as a “cruelty-free branch” or something like that. Maybe by supporting the cruelty free products, parent companies can see that those lines do well and extend the cruelty free policies to other lines.


  5. Regardless of what they try to assure to you, rest asuured that the money from purchasing OPI and Essie products will also find its way to L’Oreal cash register.

    For me personally it is equaly important who OWNS the brand, not just if the brand products and their ingredients themselves are tested or not. I don’t want to give any of my money to L’Oreal. Or any animal testing company for that matter.

  6. beachgal

    The pressure is on L’Oreal now to keep up with the no animal testing for Essie. However like with OPI, there is no animal testing – still the parent company, Coty does engage in animal testing for other products they make – just not OPI polishes – but there is ? as to some of their lotions bearing the OPI name and some other products in the OPI line. I spent years working as a clinical chemist/microbiologist. The head hunters I was approached by from drug and cosmetic companies that all use animal testing was prolific. They also tell you want they want your testing results to show. As you might know, you can skew stats to show just about anything. it’s disturbing. So I remained for all my years working in the field staying in hospital/reference laboratory testing facilities for human and vet medical testing. We sure had a lot of test kits however that we had to use that had been through tons of animal model testing before FDA approval was given for human use. The background under the rug stuff is often got animal testing despite what the top coats say about it.

  7. Caroline

    Even if OPI the company does not test on animals the company which it is owned by Coty does and most of the money goes to them so by buying OPI products you are supporting animal testing!

    • Sandra

      I agree with you 100%. I feel it’s simple math.

      Can anyone who disagrees elaborate their trail of thoughts? I meen no disrespect, I truly just don’t understand. 🙂

  8. Sara

    I just saw at work today that the contact for Essie nail polish was someone at Maybelline. I came across your blog here when I got home. Are Maybelline and L’Oreal the same company, I wonder? I know L’Oreal and Neutrogena are the same. Anyway, thank-you for confirming that it is owned by a company that tests on animals. I will NOT be buying any. And I had NO idea about OPI so thanks for that info, too!

  9. Thanks so much for posting this! I’ve contacted Essie and OPI personally to make sure, though I have no idea if they’ll answer. So glad there are people out there that care about using animal-friendly beauty products! 🙂

  10. Thank you for this post, and going to the effort to find out! It’s a hard decision to make, and harder still when uninformed, so thank you for the details. 🙂

  11. Carly

    “We feel that it’s imperative for consumers to continue buying OPI products in order to support the company’s anti-testing stance and to show parent companies that the market for cruelty-free products is huge.” —– Which is why they were bought out by an animal testing company? I think we would be foolish to think OPI will not adopt L’Oreal protocol, as it is now, after all, a L’Oreal product. Simple math, imo.

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