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Is Mary Kay Cruelty Free and Vegan? (2022 Update)

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Mary Kay is not cruelty free. This means that their products are tested on animals.

Additionally, Mary Kay is not 100% vegan.

To learn more about this brand and find out why they’re not cruelty free, keep on reading!

And by the way, if you’re looking for new cruelty free products to add to your beauty arsenal, make sure to check out the last section of this post where you’ll find some of the best Mary Kay cruelty free alternatives.

Let’s dive right in!

Is Mary Kay cruelty free? Are Mary Kay products tested on animals?

Mary Kay is NOT cruelty free.

Let’s look at the animal testing policy posted on their website (I’ve bolded the important parts):

No product sold or manufactured in the United States is tested on animals. Mary Kay does not conduct animal testing on our products or ingredients. Nevertheless, there are still some governments that conduct animal testing before they will allow certain products to be sold in their country. Mary Kay is committed to the elimination of animal testing and is a strong advocate of utilizing alternative methods to substantiate the safety of our ingredients and products. For more than three decades, we have been a global leader in helping to develop alternative testing methods to ensure product safety, and we will not rest until we convince all governments that alternative methods are a better way to ensure cosmetic product safety.

Source: Mary Kay

In order to be cruelty free, brands:

  • Must not test their finished products or ingredients on animals
  • Must make sure that their suppliers don’t test on animals
  • Must not commission third parties to test their products on animals
  • Must not sell their products in stores in mainland China, or other countries where animal testing is still required by law

However, as you can see in the animal testing policy quoted above, Mary Kay products are tested on animals in China.

Therefore, Mary Kay is not a cruelty free brand.

Also, please note that Mary Kay is on PETA’s list of companies that test on animals.

Keep on reading for more information!

Is Mary Kay sold in China?

Mary Kay is sold in mainland China where animal testing is still required by law.

Why can’t cruelty free brands sell in mainland China?

Animal testing is still happening for products sold in physical stores in mainland China.

Pre-market animal testing is required for all special-use imported products, and non-routine post-market testing on animals may also be done in cases of customer complaints.

However, please keep in mind that this doesn’t apply to products sold in stores at the airports, or in Hong Kong.

Also, products can be sold online and shipped to mainland China without being tested on animals.

Is Mary Kay owned by a parent brand? If yes, is it cruelty free?

Mary Kay is not owned by a parent company.

Is Mary Kay vegan?

Mary Kay is not 100% vegan as a brand.

Additionally, please note that since Mary Kay products are tested on animals in China and are therefore not cruelty free, I wouldn’t consider them vegan-friendly.

Cruelty free and vegan alternatives to Mary Kay

Mary Kay is a beauty brand that sells makeup, skincare, fragrance and more. 

There are so many beauty brands that are cruelty free! That’s why, in my opinion, there’s really no excuse for supporting brands that test on animals.

Some of the best cruelty free alternatives to Mary Kay are:


The Ordinary
Youth to People
Paula’s Choice


Milk Makeup
Urban Decay
IT Cosmetics


Le Labo

Now it’s your turn!

What are your favorite cruelty free skincare brands?

Let me know in the comments below!

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