St. Ives?! Plus Cruelty-Free Skin Care

PictureWhether you use face wash, body scrub, or lotion daily, well that is simply your choice. What really matters most is the company or brand we purchase these products from. Like a previous post, which can be found here about the no need for animal testing, I suggested St. Ives as a cheap, cruelty-free company that’s products mostly do not contain animal ingredients. Although back then this was true, as of spring 2011, St. Ives has secretly been testing on animals behind customer’s backs! I am devastated, considering their products worked great and was conveniently located at beauty and drug stores. Unfortunately, after the old packaging was finally used up, seeing that not only the new packaging, but the label, no longer stated “NOT TESTED ON ANIMALS,” I later came to realization of this companies undercover switch. To my surprise, a Unliever logo was placed in the bottom left hand corner of the product. Immediately, I was denial. How could my favorite, go-to company for face care & body lotions, turn their backs on their loyal customers!? It’s safe to say that it will be more of a lose for them than for me.

Actually, this isn’t about MY discovery, it’s about yours. So many St. Ives customers are unaware of this sudden change, and unless you have seen the back side of the new packaging, this news may be hidden in your blind spot.
Although a cruelty-free company turning to animal testing , is bad news, there are always more companies left to be discovered that are either just as good, or better! But before we get to that, it’s important that we realize who Unliever is that bought St. Ives and other companies that they own, as well. You may recognize their U logo on their products they own (see above picture). Simple enough, seeing that logo means the product is not cruelty-free, similar to the Proctor & Gamble Company which I will cover later on. More companies owned by Unilever can be found here.

St. Ives use to be well known for it’s great products that don’t contain animal ingredients (most) and don’t test on animals (sadly do now…) and others who share the same love for these products may not even be aware what they are now supporting. You’ve already informed yourself on this upsetting new, what better thing to do next than to inform others, as well? So please help spread the word to stop purchasing St. Ives in order to decline their sales. This will prove that animal testing is not necessary and hopefully encourage them to change their ways like Urban Decay did recently, and really, it isn’t. 


With that being said, don’t forget that it is okay to use up the products by these companies that you bought unknowing of their cruel animal testing practices. Why waste it when you already bought it? It’s always better to use a product in guilt and remember to not repurchase it, than to buy it, and never even look at it. An animal was tested on for that exact product; don’t make the animal suffer for no reason at all! The least you can do is use it and then be more careful. Of course, don’t actually try to feel guilty, mistakes do happen, you are prone to make them just like everyone else.

Basically, this is a lesson well learned. Just because a company once did not test on animals, does not mean it will always be that way. It can be bought by a parent company, like St. Ives, that does the testing for them, still contributing to animal testing. That is why I highly suggest you check the labels every so often because like St. Ives, you never know what company will decide that money is more important to them than ethics.

Also, a great way to stay up to date with these companies is by downloading a free app for your iPod/iPad/iPhone in the iTunes store. These are updated constantly so you are sure to be updated if anything changes. Don’t forget to let others know about these. After all, they are free! To find out more companies that do not use animal testing, you can either go to PETA’s site to search for companies, or Global Animal’s, to name a few, or download a free app(s) for your device below: Cruelty-Free, for cruelty free companies, & Animal-Free, for those secret, derived ingredients. You can also order a free cruelty-free shopping guide through the mail here. And for those willing to spend a couple of dollars, there’s a little bit better search app available, as well, which enables you to add products and companies to your favorites to make your own cruelty-free shopping list, here. One more app, the Leaping Bunny, which can be downloaded here!

Now for recently discovered products that are like St. Ives, but of course, minus the cruelty. Companies like LUSHFreeman,Alba BotanicaDermalogicaQueen HelenePur MineralsThe Body Shop, & Yes to Carrots, just to name some favorites. But of course, these are only a small majority of companies that don’t test on animals.

In the end, who you buy from may not seem as important as what you get from them, but it really is significant in the long run. Don’t fall into a pit when you can easily walk around it. And if you do, then don’t be discouraged to pick yourself up and get back on track. Shopping cruelty-free can be simple if you make it that way.

As always, inform yourself first, then inform others.

Check out the video below to prove that Unliever is “not as clean as it claims.” Bad intentions for not only animals, but humans, as well! If this doesn’t make you not want to buy from them, than I’m not sure what will!


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  • kitty

    X (… this stinks their moisturizer is the best, i breakout with everything

    • So sorry to hear that! I know how it feels…

      If you need help finding a replacement, let me know and I’d love to help! 🙂

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  • William

    I had used St. Ives Apricot Scrub since I was a kid. I did quite a bit of studying during my graduate studies about Unilever and many companies drastically changed after their acquisition by Unilever. It’s unfortunate that testing on animals is the industry standard. I no longer buy St. Ives; but I’m trying to find a good replacement for the Dove men soap that I use. While I’m trying to eliminate buying Unilever products, it’s hard to find good substitutes sometimes. Thanks for another great article. Your blog is great.

    • Hey William, so glad to hear you learned their “dirty little secrets!” I recommend Queen Helene’s Invigorating Apricot Scrub (or any of their scrubs!). The label not only reads “not tested on animals” but “no animal ingredients!” Better yet, they can be found at stores like Ulta, Bed Bath & Beyond, Fruitful Yield and many more.

      Hope this helped 🙂

      • William

        Thanks for the info. Apricot scrub makes my skin feel awesome (and the ladies like that too! :P). I’ll check our Queen Helene’s the next time I’m near a retailer that carries it.

        • That’s great! They also have various kinds like Aloe Vera, Pomegranate & Raspberry, Cocoa Butter, and Mint Julep, as well. Just be sure you are getting the scrub and not the masque! The masque is the type where you leave it on your face; unless you want that, that is.

          But honestly, it’s the only skin care I use — right in the shower! Easy, cheap, and cruelty-free!

          Let me know how it works out for you if you decide to get it 🙂

  • DhelaF

    I’m from Brazil and I used to buy st.ives products in the early 90’s( although they were extremely expensive here) just because they were cruelty free, I never thought that could change one day. Their label had this phrase on the bottom “We have never tested on animals, and we never will” I believed, I feel cheated!.Now I know the’ve sold themselves to Unilever. Shame on you st.ives, shame on you! Thanks for your post.

    • Hey DhelaF,

      I’m sorry to hear that! St. Ives really turned their backs. Not just only on the animals, but on its workers, as well. Let me know if you need help finding an alternative! 🙂

  • Hey Sandy,
    As unfortunate as it is, St. Ives is definitely losing customers! Let me know if you need help finding an alternative! 🙂

  • De from NC

    I’m really disappointed, I thought St. Ives was cruelty free!!!! I will seek another CF product!!!

  • AndreaLTackett

    I too recently purchased new St. Ives products, and was shocked to see the Unilever label – a company known for their barbaric testing on animals. A sad farewell to St. Ives, a long-time favorite company that started on such a wonderful journey. I will not purchase their products again.

  • Lisa M. Duncan

    I’m so very disappointed to learn about St. Ives. I’ve used many of their products over the years because they are very good. No longer. Hopefully they will change their policies. PS. Please have someone proofread your articles before publishing. Typos are distracting.

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  • Kimberly J

    Man, this sucks. I know this was posted in 2011, but I hadn’t needed to buy a St.Ives product in a few years because frankly, I still had half a bottle of the huge lotions and had switched over my face scrubs to another brand I preferred a few years ago. However, I went to the store the other day and bought a big bottle of one of their lotions because my other one was getting a little old. When I got home, and after I had used some already, I noticed that all it said was “contains no animal ingredients,” but nowhere did it say “not TESTED on animals” like my old bottle did. So I went online and found this page. Really sad. :/ But I’m going to use it up because, like you said, it makes less sense to have it go to waste and have an animal suffer in total vain. Since it’s used, if I returned it, all they would do is throw it away, so I’m stuck with it for now. This really sucks. I have learned about so many companies this year alone that have switched from no testing to testing and it’s really freaking sad! Bath and Body works is another big one I just recently learned of. 🙁 Also, thank you for providing the list app, I never thought to look for an app like that. I will be DLing it to my phone.

  • MiaMia

    Yeap they are now testing on animals… shame on you St. Ives

  • St ives used to be a swiss company that was bought by Unilever. The Apricot Scrub originally was made of crushed apricot pits. Now they use walnut shells and add a tiny bit of apricot as the 2nd to last ingredient just so they can keep calling it apricot scrub. Very sad but this is no longer the real Swiss St Ives.

    • I know how you feel..

      If you need help finding a replacement, let me know and I’d love to help! 🙂

  • ratgirl78

    I loved St.Ives Skin Renewing Collagen Elastin lotion. It was the only lotion I could use that didn’t leave my hands feeling greasy. Can anyone recommend another brand that’s similar, but isn’t produced by greedy lying scumbags? 😋

    • ratgirl78

      I guess I’m kinda answering my own question here, but felt I needed to share, just in case anyone else is in the same boat as I was, needing advice on a replacement lotion. I found Kiss My Face Antioxidant Vitamin A & E Moisturizer is pretty close to the St. Ives in that it’s almost as non-greasy. It has a pleasant odour that isn’t overwhelming & most importantly, it’s not tested on animals or made with animal ingredients! One other thing: just as Karen said about the Nature’s Gate lotion going much farther, the K.M.F. lotion is the same way. I have actually added water to my bottle because the lotion is quite thick! By adding the water, my bottle of lotion can be stretched twice as far, is still extremely moisturising & an excellent value. Hope this info helps someone. Cheers!