Lush backs campaign to end lethal dose animal tests

By Amanda Pauley | Published: 18-Apr-2023

The beauty brand is supporting Animal Aid’s Time for Better Science initiative, which is petitioning for the Lethal Dose 50 test to be scrapped

Lush is calling for the end of lethal dose animal tests.

The UK retailer is supporting Animal Aid’s Time for Better Science campaign, which is demanding that these “outdated and cruel” tests be replaced with ethical alternatives.

The initiative includes a petition for government, industry regulators, pharmaceutical and chemical companies to eliminate the Lethal Dose 50 test.

The test involves giving increasing doses of toxic substances to groups of animals, usually mice, until 50% of them are killed.

Lush and Animal Aid are urging companies to use the new AcutoX test instead.  

Developed by British laboratory XCellR8, and part-funded by Animal Aid, it exposes ethically sourced, human skin cells to increasing doses of a test chemical to learn how damaged the cells are. 

The more damaged the cells, the more toxic the chemical.

All of Lush’s UK and Ireland stores will display Animal Aid’s campaign in its windows ahead of World Day for Animals in Laboratories on 24 April. 

A stunt is also happening at the brand’s Oxford Street, London, flagship store today.

“[It] will be harking back to the 1920s, which is when the current Lethal Dose 50 tests were developed,” said a spokesperson for the brand. 


Hilary Jones, Ethics Director at Lush, commented: “As a company that has to test our products to bring them to market, we cannot think of a test that is more irrelevant than the Lethal Dose 50 test. 

“It provides nothing that would give us confidence to evaluate how something reacts for our customers and we have never used it.

"Science and technology has changed in leaps and bounds since the days this test was regarded as ‘good science’, so we are 100% behind a push to get this taken away from the regulatory framework."

Daisy Hall, Campaign Manager for Animal Aid, added: “Animal Aid has campaigned against all animal experiments, but specifically the Lethal Dose 50 for over four decades. 

“With the launch of AcutoX, and the mounting scientific evidence about the poor relevance to humans of animal-based research, we urge everyone to join us in calling for a ‘Ban on lethal dose animal tests: it’s time for better science’.” 

Lush is known for speaking out about social and environmental issues.

Last month, the British beauty brand called on MPs to protect LGBT+ people by passing legislation that prohibits conversion practices.

Other campaigns include raising awareness on the importance of pollinators for the world’s food supply and ecosystem.

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