Cosmetics and foreskin... - Mothering Forums
The Case Against Circumcision > Cosmetics and foreskin...
mommyswenn's Avatar mommyswenn 07:21 PM 11-02-2006
I know that some of Bath and Body Works' products contain foreskin. My mil loves their products and can always be counted on to pick up stuff for Christmas gifts, etc. I'm going to ask her not to by me anything from there, because I want no part in supporting this business, but I would like to be able to tell her what specific product line(s) contain foreskin. I tried to google it, but couldn't find the info. Can anyone help me out?

I also tried to see if I could find any info about any companies that use foreskin in their products, but the closest I could find were links that praised companies which have moved away from animal testing to using foreskins instead. : DON'T get me wrong -- I am in no way FOR animal testing. I just find it heartbreaking and so incredibly ironic that they don't see that it is no less cruel to use foreskins.

One thing that occurred to me -- PETA (obviously) is very outspoken about animal testing. I wonder if there is anyway to bring them on board to the intactivist movement?

I know the cosmetics issue has been raised here before -- forgive me if I'm just repeating that which others have said...

13Sandals's Avatar 13Sandals 07:25 PM 11-02-2006
Seriously, I had no idea that foreskins were used in cosmetic products...(sorry, I'm new to some of this even though my two boys are intact) - the deeper you go - the more outrageous it gets. how many people profit off of this practice!!
grapejuicemama's Avatar grapejuicemama 07:47 PM 11-02-2006

Oh my bleepin' bleep........I had no idea. I read about foreskins being used to test cosmetics, but that's the first time I've ever heard of them being an ingredient.

How the heck does that work? How do they list it on the ingredients?

Wait till I tell my SIL, she'll be so grossed out........
Ambyrkatt's Avatar Ambyrkatt 08:31 PM 11-02-2006
I had no idea they were even used for testing. I wonder how many other people don't have a clue?
Fi.'s Avatar Fi. 08:42 PM 11-02-2006
Bath and Body Works and The Body Shop use them at the very least to test.
mommyswenn's Avatar mommyswenn 09:02 PM 11-02-2006

I phoned Marcelle (my favourite skin-care line) and asked if they use foreskins for testing (they don't test on animals) or in any of their products.

The woman was digusted and assured me that they don't. She did say it doesn't surprise her to hear that other companies do, though.

I told her I was VERY pleased to hear that, would continue to use their products and would encourage others to do so as well.

mommyswenn's Avatar mommyswenn 09:09 PM 11-02-2006
Originally Posted by Fi. View Post
Bath and Body Works and The Body Shop use them at the very least to test.
Are you sure about The Body Shop? From their (Canadian) website:

What we’re doing

We do not test our products or ingredients on animals nor do we commission others to do so. To ensure the safety of our products we use alternative ‘non-animal’ tests such as micro-biological analysis using computer modelling and controlled testing on carefully monitored groups of human volunteers. We rigourously monitor all of our suppliers and strictly enforce our Against Animal Testing policy. As a result, we’ve been recognized by the animal protection movement’s prestigious International Standard of Compassion - the only cosmetics company in Canada to receive such recognition.

In addition to our own purchasing practices, we lobby the government to effect change and encourage the use of alternative tests in the cosmetics industry. We also campaign to raise public awareness and dispel the myths around various “cruelty-free” claims.
I tried phone Bath and Body works and was given a different number to call (of course they're closed now : ) So I'll phone them tomorrow.
Fi.'s Avatar Fi. 06:26 PM 11-07-2006
A little late on this but the Body Shop was just "acquired" by L'Oreal who does in fact use foreskin for testing. I can't say I'd be surprised if it happened to the Body Shop. Even so, they're now owned by L'Oreal who DOES already test on foreskin so I'm not putting any money in their pocket.
willowsmom's Avatar willowsmom 06:28 PM 11-07-2006
I think there was a discussion about this a few months (years?) ago...
PETA isn't interested in getting on board with the intactivist thing, IIRC.

And...I'm not shilling for them or anything...but I know that Arbonne only tests on consenting adults.
~*SugarMama*~'s Avatar ~*SugarMama*~ 06:31 PM 11-07-2006
Ugh, that is just so wrong on so many different levels. Now I know two more places that I will be avoiding like the plague. Too bad too because before today, I liked some of their products. Now I just can't get that sick image out of my head.:
mommyswenn's Avatar mommyswenn 07:36 PM 11-07-2006
The woman from Marcelle said the same thing -- they test on staff first, and then they do controlled tests on consenting adults.

I won't be shopping at the Body Shop anymore, either.

Oh, as a side note I e-mailed an animal rights organization:


I stumbled across your website while researching the issue of cosmetic testing. I noticed when reading the pamphlet at this link:

that it says, "In fact, there already exist various computer models and tests involving the use of human tissue or cell cultures, which could replace all the standard animal tests." [emphasis mine]

The tests which you refer to often involve the use of infant foreskin tissue. In my opinion, the act of circumcision is no less horrific than animal testing, and it pains me to read of Animal Aid's tacit endorsement of the practice of removing healthy genital tissue from non-consenting infants.

While I am in no way in favour of animal testing, I find it deplorable that an animal-rights organization would suggest the genital mutilation of infants is an acceptable alternative. Surely the world's littlest citizens deserve at least as much right to body integrity and freedom from cruelty as our animals do.

The reply I got (not verbatim b/c that would violate the UA) said that most tissue is taken from biopsies and post mortems, and that they do not endorse the mutilation of any person or animal. (This is a European organization, though, so maybe that is the case there.)

I would really like to find more information about the use of foreskins in cosmetic testing, but am having a hard time finding links. Can anybody help me out? I'm also still wondering what specific line(s) at Bath and Body Works contain foreskin. Thanks to anyone who can help me out.
DocsNemesis's Avatar DocsNemesis 07:54 PM 11-07-2006
I dont know what lines they use the foreskin in, prolly the anti aging stuff. But dh and I have stopped shopping there period. Dh used to love their foaming hand soap and their lotion and stuff, but as soon as I told him this stuff ( about 6 months ago), he said we would not be going there anymore.
If I were you, I'd tell her that you do not want anything from that place. You can tell her why, or just say its for personal reasons, or make something up, I dunno, but I would rather get no present than something from there.
mommyswenn's Avatar mommyswenn 02:06 AM 11-08-2006
Oh, I have NO desire for ANY products from there ever again, and have no problem telling my mil that, or why that is. I just know she's going to ask which products specifically, and she'll probably think I'm making it up if I can't back it up. Maybe it's better if she doesn't have specifics, then she has to wonder and get ooged out just thinking about it, and can't specifically avoid certain products.