Monday 26 March 2012

Why I'm Considering Cancelling My MAC Pro Membership

As you know I am principally a Make-up Artist who uses organic products, however, as I have said in the past, it is still necessary in the course of my work to occasionally use products that are not natural or organic. When this is the case, I have certain strict criteria that products and brands must meet in order for me to use them - hence there are some big-name professional brands that you simply won't find in my kit.

Principally I insist that the products I use are cruelty-free.  As such I have always avoided products tested on animals or products which knowingly contain ingredients tested on animals.  I took this stance when I began wearing make-up in my early teens and I certainly don't intend to change it now.

It has sadly been bought to my attention in recent days that MAC Cosmetics, a company whose products I have always included in my pro kit - appear to have adjusted their policy on animal testing. This came as a surprise to me as MAC are a company who had a very public and long-held stance against the use of animals in their cosmetics testing, in fact for many years they used the slogan "We test on models not animals" in their campaigns.

MAC have recently been removed from the list of cruelty free companies that animal rights organisation PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), endorse.  US site 'Logical Harmony' (an animal friendly, beauty and lifestyle blog) gives a more in-depth account here:

To summarise, it appears that certain countries may actually require animal testing of cosmetic products before they are authorised for sale.  And it appears that MAC (along with other Estée Lauder brands) may have left the door open for a compromise on their cruelty free stance in order to secure access to large emerging markets in the aforementioned countries.  

Daily Mail journalist Maysa Rawi summarises PETA's allegations here

Formerly an independent company, the MAC brand has been owned by cosmetics giant Estée Lauder since 1998.  Estée Lauder was actually among the first of the large international brands to stop animal testing in the late 1980's and early 1990's. On looking at the Estée Lauder website however, I discovered a statement on animal testing which reads much like the MAC statement quoted in the Logical Harmony blog (linked above).  The statement relates to all of the brands that Estée Lauder control (which alongside MAC includes the eco brand Aveda and other professional brands such as Prescriptives and Bobbi Brown and natural skincare range Origins). 

A copy of the statement can be read below:

As a result of this news, I will be writing to the Estée Lauder group and to MAC and Aveda individually to ask for clarification on this issue. If their response confirms a change of stance on animal testing then I will be cancelling my Mac Pro membership. I don't imagine their public relations department will be too concerned at the loss of one customer, but if Estée Lauder fails to secure a foothold in these emerging markets they may come to regret their decision to compromise their ethical values.

Estée Lauder Companies:
For further information and a full list of the cosmetics, fragrance and skincare brands owned by Estée Lauder Companies, please visit 


  1. Very interesting indeed. I have always had a bad feeling about MAC, I even turned down a job with them because I just can NOT put products on others faces that I wouldn't put on my own. I actually gave up being a MUA due to all the crap in the cosmetics but now I am on a journey similar to yours, I want to go all organic and natural (where possible). I can see it has worked for yourself and I say GOOD ON YOU Laura! :)

    1. Hi
      Thank you for getting in touch. MAC's change of stance is a real disappointment, as is Avedas. I only hope they see the light but I imagine the potential financial scale of the Chinese market will win over. It's such a shame that you gave up your career because of the nasties - its great there are so many natural and organic alternatives out there now! Glad you are wanting to make the change.
      Thanks for your support
      L x

  2. I buy my make up at etsy. That way its homemade and all natural organic no animal testing. I make my own 4 steps skin care regimen.

    1. Etsy has some lovely products on it I agree and homemade products are a good way to go.