New York became the tenth state to ban the sale of cosmetics tested on animals after Gov. Kathy Hochul signed a measure into law Thursday evening.
The law, known as the New York Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act, prohibits the sale and manufacturing of cosmetics that have been tested on animals. It is slated to go into effect in January 2023.
The new legislation in New York follows similar action taken in Virginia, California, Louisiana, New Jersey, Maine, Hawaii, Nevada, Illinois and Maryland, according to the Humane Society of the United States.
“For decades, helpless animals have been subjected to cruel and painful experiments simply for the creation of cosmetic products,” said New York State Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal, who sponsored the measure, alongside Democratic state Senator Alessandra Biaggi.
“At the same time, research methods have evolved, rendering unnecessary the requirement that animals undergo inhumane tests to help companies create a new mascara or shampoo,” Rosenthal said.
The Humane Society says that modern testing methods like human cell-based tests and computer modeling can replace animal testing, which sometimes involves repeatedly force feeding rats or dripping chemicals into the eyes of restrained rabbits.
“With the increasing availability of non-animal test methods and thousands of existing ingredients, there is no excuse to continue harming animals for the sake of products such as shampoo, aftershave or mascara, ” New York State Director for the Humane Society Brian Shapiro said in a press release.
“Now it is up to Congress to pass the Humane Cosmetics Act to bring about a consistent standard for ending cosmetics animal testing across the country,” he continued.
The Humane Cosmetics Act – which was introduced in the House in December 2021 – would ban the sale and manufacturing of animal tested cosmetics throughout the US.
More than 375 companies have signed on to support the legislation for a nationwide ban, including Walgreens, The Body Shop, Unilever, H&M and Paula’s Choice, according to the Humane Society.
In New York, it has been a monumental week for animal rights. Hochul on Thursday also signed legislation prohibiting pet stores in the state from selling dogs, cats and rabbits starting December 2024.
New York pet stores will have one year to adhere to the new law, and New Yorkers will still be able to purchase dogs from responsible breeders after the law is in effect, according to a statement from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
“Dogs, cats and rabbits across New York deserve loving homes and humane treatment,” Hochul said in a press release.