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Estee Lauder, Avon, Mary Kay “Animal Testing” Class Action Lawsuit

By Sarah Pierce


PETA Cruelty Free
UPDATE 9/5/13: Plaintiffs agree to drop class action lawsuit against Avon. The case continues against Estee Lauder and Mary Kay.
Five women have filed a federal class action lawsuit against cosmetic companies Estee Lauder, Avon and Mary Kay for making false claims in the United States that their products are “cruelty free,” even though they resumed animal testing of cosmetics for the Chinese market.

The women are demanding $100 million in damages for the alleged false advertising and marketing.

“For years, Defendants marketed and advertised their companies and their cosmetic products as not being tested on animals, when in fact Defendants were testing their cosmetic products on animals so that they could sell products in China and other foreign countries, thereby reaping hundreds of millions of dollars in sales. Defendants later purported to disclose, at least on their websites, that they in fact were animal testing, but the disclosures were wholly inadequate and deceptive,” the class action lawsuit states.

As a result of these deceptions that occurred over 20 years, Estee Lauder, Avon and Mary Kay achieved placement on PETA’s “Do Not Test” list, which indicates which companies do not test products on live animals. Estee Lauder, Avon and Mary Kay were, until recently, among the largest mainstream corporations to be included on PETA’s cruelty-free lists.

“As a result of being included on the list, as well as many similar lists, defendants enjoyed the support of PETA and millions of consumers who buy cosmetics only from companies that do not conduct animal testing,” the class action lawsuit says. “Hence, the commercial success of defendants’ products during the class period was positively influenced by their direct representations regarding animal testing. Simply put, defendants reaped hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from U.S. consumers who otherwise would not have purchased defendants’ products.”

The false advertising class action lawsuit is brought on behalf of all California consumers who purchased cosmetic products from Estee Lauder, Avon or Mary Kay when the companies represented they did not conduct animal testing. It is seeking an injunction and damages for fraud/fraudulent concealment, unfair business practices, false advertising and violations of California’s Consumers Legal Remedies Act.

A copy of the Estee Lauder, Avon & Mary Kay Animal Cruelty Class Action Lawsuit can be read here.

The case is Marina Beltran, et al. v. Estee Lauder, Inc.; Avon Products, Inc. and Mary Kay, Inc., Case No. 12-cv-312, U.S. District Court, Central District of California.


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  • Anonymous March 6, 2012

    As a fairly new Avon rep, I’m dismayed to find out that Avon is NOT cruelty-free. I’ve been careful to always only buy cruelty-free products whenever possible and now I am selling this stuff. I feel queasy about it. These companies need to retreat and stop dealing with countries that have lousy records on animal rights- or human rights, for that matter. Consumers need to lean hard and demand accountability.

  • Anonymous March 8, 2012

    sue them to their last penny! Here is to hoping they go bankrupt!!!!

  • Anonymous September 16, 2012

    People also heavily trusted PETA’s “facts”. Seems PETA didn’t do any fact checking and also led people to believe in these companies. I could tell anyone I want that I’m a vegetarian and you could choose to believe me until you did your own fact checking in my home. I am far from being a vegetarian.

  • Angel July 15, 2013


  • monique hopkins September 30, 2013

    I have purchased all 3 name brands for years, spending large amounts of money. I’m most definitely interest in filling a class action settlement.

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