Is Mary Kay Cruelty-free and Vegan?

Quick Answer: Is Mary Kay Cruelty-free and Vegan?

No, Mary Kay is not cruelty-free; they test their products on animals. The company also markets its goods in the People’s Republic of China, where testing cosmetics on animals is compulsory before the product is released for sale. Mary Kay is also not 100 percent vegan, as it contains animal-derived ingredients.

Mary Kay is a cosmetics company that specializes in skincare and makeup. The company headquarters is located at 16251 Dallas Parkway in Addison, Texas.

Their parent company, Mary Kay Holding Corporation, through their subsidiaries, deal in makeup skincare and fragrances for men and women. The company was founded in 1963 and has a staff of over 5000 employees.

Is Mary Kay Cruelty-free?

No, Mary Kay is not cruelty-free. A while back, customers could not tell the cruelty-free status of many brands. They could only rely on the official statements released by various companies.

These, however, were very few and sometimes inaccurate.

This is not the case anymore; today, you can tell if a company is cruelty-free by considering the following criteria.

  • None of their products are tested on animals
  • The ingredients of their products should not have any animal-based products
  • They do not allow third-parties to test their products on their behalf
  • The company does not sell cosmetic products in China
  • They do not sell in countries where the law requires animal testing

After looking deeply into the brand and its products, we found out that their products contain animal-derived ingredients and sell their products in China.

This means that their products are tested on animals so that they can be approved for sale.

Are Mary Kay Products tested on animals?

No, the company does not test its products, ingredients, or formulations on animals. However, if a government requires it to be tested on animals so that they can be sold in a particular country, Mary Kay will allow them to.

The following is Mary Kay’s official animal testing policy.

Source: Mary Kay Website

This means that even though Mary Kay does not test on animals, they pay and allow the Chinese authorities to test their products on animals.

This is unfortunate as the company was initially cruelty-free, however in 2012, the company renounced its cruelty-free status and allowed the Chinese government to test on animals.

Mary Kay was even certified by PETA until they started the animal testing. They are not cruelty-free anymore.

Are Mary Kay products sold in China?

Yes, Mary Kay products are sold in China. Whenever a cosmetic product is sold in the People’s Republic in China, it means that it is tested on animals before being approved into the market.

Companies that sell their products in China are not cruelty-free.

Source: Peta Website

Some companies refuse to sell their products in China because of this animal testing law. Unfortunately, Mary Kay is not one of them. They put high profits before the welfare of animals.

Does Mary Kay have cruelty-free certifications?

We looked for Mary Kay’s cruelty-free certifications, but we could not find any. On PETA’s website, we found out that they test on animals.

It is doubtful that any official animal rights organization would certify them as cruelty-free.

Source: Peta Website

Is Mary Kay owned by another company?

Mary Kay is owned by Mary Kay Holding Corporation. The company is located in Dallas in the United States and was founded in 1963 by Mary Kay Ash.

The company was the sixth largest network marketing company, according to Direct Selling News in 2018, with a volume of $3.25 billion.

Are Mary Kay products vegan?

For a product to be recognized as vegan, all the ingredients used to make it have to be free from animal-derived ingredients. Cruelty-free and vegan go together.

For a product to be cruelty-free, it should not be tested on animals or contain animal-derived ingredients. Mary Kay products are not 100 percent vegan; they contain animal-derived ingredients.

When purchasing products, always look up what they contain. However, be aware that some companies do not disclose all their ingredients.

The same for cruelty-free, look for official certifications from well-known animal rights organizations.


Mary Kay produces quality products, however, they are not cruelty-free. The company sells them in China, where they are tested on animals to be safe for human use.

Mary Kay is okay with animals suffering in laboratories as long as their products are approved for sale.

Given that they are companies that refuse to sell their products in China to protect the animals, we can only hope Mary Kay will follow in their footsteps.