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Now that we’ve made a promise to Leaping Bunny, as well as to you, you can be sure we’ll never test on animals. Period.
Eighteen B was officially certified by Leaping Bunny as a cruelty-free company in March 2019. We talked to Lindsay Wray, our Chief Science Officer, about why she cares about staying cruelty-free and how we test our formulations.
First of all, what is Leaping Bunny certification? This certification means that Eighteen B is officially recognized as a cruelty-free company by the Leaping Bunny group. That means none of our products or the ingredients in our products are being tested on animals.
Leaping Bunny doesn’t certify individual products; they only certify brands. That means none of our products, including our new products, will ever be tested on animals. (That includes our brand new product launching next week. Stay tuned!)
Quite a lot of work went into this. When we launched Eighteen B, we were always planning to apply for Leaping Bunny certification. Before finalizing our product formulation, we investigated all of our ingredient suppliers to confirm that no animal testing was happening on the ingredients. We also agreed to be randomly audited in the future by the Leaping Bunny group to ensure our business practices stay up to par.
Why is Leaping Bunny certification so important to us? That’s a bigger question! For me, it gets a little philosophical. If you’ve read Sapiens or Guns, Germs, and Steel, you know that the domestication of animals allowed humans to evolve to where we are today. I’m really grateful to animals for that. But today, in the skincare industry anyway, we don’t need animals to work for us anymore.
I believe that it’s our obligation as a society to remove animals from the equation wherever possible. The good news is that it’s becoming easier and easier. The EU is already making major strides. They passed a law banning animal testing in 2018. Shortly thereafter, California passed a similar law and other states are following suit. However, you can still find ingredients made in other countries that are tested on animals.
At Eighteen B, we’ve also decided not to use animal-derived ingredients in our formulations. Instead, we leverage human innovation. Thanks to fermentation, we’re able to mimic ingredients that would otherwise be animal-derived. Not only is fermentation vegan, it’s also sustainable.
Thanks to human innovation and the advent of human relevant testing modalities, we’re able to test products in far more humane ways. These tests are more humane, and they’re super interesting. Here are three testing modalities we’re excited about.
1. Right now, we’re running a phototoxicity test, which evaluates the potential of a product to induce a negative response on the skin exposed to light. Instead of testing on skin, we’re able to run tests on a layer of fibroblast cells in a Petri dish.
2. We’re currently running an ex vivo study on skin that was discarded from an abdominoplasty, or “tummy tuck.” We’re able to apply the product to that skin to study the effects on human skin.
3. As my PhD thesis was on the topic of tissue engineering, I’m most excited about this new testing modality. Scientists are currently working to recapitulate skin outside of the lab using human-derived skin cells. Where the first test I mentioned is run on a thin layer of cells in a Petri dish, this test allows scientists to build skin to its full thickness. By using cell culture that’s truer to human skin, we’re able to see the effects across multiple layers of cells. This field has a lot of promise.
We at Eighteen B are committed to cruelty-free practices. Now that we’ve made a promise to Leaping Bunny, as well as to you, you can be sure we’ll never test on animals. Period.
Do you have questions for Lindsay? Comments? Topics you want us to cover? We’d love to hear from you. Email us at email@example.com.