The short answer: No, Caress or Lux is not cruelty free.
The long answer: Known alternately as Lux, Caress is a global brand that was founded by the Lever Brothers in 1899. It began as a laundry soap called Sunlight Flakes, and later manufactured beauty soap bars and body washes. The brand is distributed by British-Dutch multinational consumer company Unilever, which is also known for Suave and St. Ives—two cruelty-free brands!
Caress does not share its stance on animal testing on its official US website. Its parent company, on the other hand, reveals, “We do not test our products on animals and are committed to ending animal testing. We use a wide range of non-animal approaches to evaluate the safety of our products for consumers, our workers, and the environment. We also develop ‘next generation’ safety assessment approaches that do not rely on new animal data.
As part of our commitment to end animal testing globally, a growing number of our brands ensure that their products and ingredients are not subject to animal testing by Unilever, by our suppliers, or by regulatory authorities. These brands’ commitment to no animal testing is certified by global animal protection groups. Unilever supports calls for a worldwide animal testing ban on cosmetics by 2023.
Occasionally, across Unilever’s broader portfolio of brands, ingredients that we use still have to be tested by suppliers to comply with legal and regulatory requirements in some markets; and some government authorities test certain products on animals as part of their regulations. We are recognized by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) as a ‘company working for regulatory change’ for the work we have been doing for more than 30 years to secure the adoption of non-animal approaches.”
Currently, Caress or Lux is not certified as cruelty free by PETA or Leaping Bunnies. Additionally, the brand is marketed in China, so it must follow the country’s regulations on animal testing. Tests may be done before an imported beauty product launches, or when a customer files a complaint. Because of these facts, Caress or Lux cannot be considered cruelty free.