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Boycott Olay!
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Retro-orbital bleeding
P&G have inflicted this horrific procedure - retro-orbital bleeding - on innocent animals

Twiggy duped by Olay's cruel deception

UPDATE: See Twiggy betrays defenceless animals

In July, shocking news emerged that Twiggy had signed a contract to advertise the Olay Definity range made by animal testing company Procter & Gamble (P&G). This conflicted with Twiggy’s support for campaigns against P&G’s animal testing of cosmetics, such as Uncaged’s Boycott Herbal Essences project and Naturewatch’s Compassionate Shopping Guide.

She signed this statement:

“I support Uncaged’s campaign to highlight Procter & Gamble’s unnecessary testing of beauty products on animals and to encourage Procter & Gamble to end all animal testing for cosmetics and household products and support the forthcoming EU ban on cosmetics testing.”

Now, Twiggy has kindly responded to Uncaged’s representations, revealing that, typically, Olay/P&G have lied to her about their animal testing. Twiggy tells us:

“I am categorically assured in writing by Olay that the product I am advertising has not been tested on animals.”

However, published scientific papers confirm that Olay/P&G have performed cruel and deadly poisoning tests on animals for the sake of the entire Definity range.

Hundreds of animals force-fed and killed

In one of the tests, P&G scientists repeatedly force-fed a chemical ingredient found in Olay Definity - butylparaben - to scores of pregnant rats. Some of the animals suffered poisoning after being given massive doses that were hundreds of times higher than could possibly be consumed by humans. Just before they were due to give birth, the pregnant animals suffered a painful and terrifying death in a carbon dioxide gas chamber. Over a thousand baby animals survived, only to be cut from their mothers' dead bodies, killed and dismembered.

Gratuitous cruelty

Another scientific paper describes how scientists from P&G (together with L’Oreal and Unilever) killed 128 rats in a test of butylparaben and methylparaben, found across the whole Olay Definity range.

All the animals underwent a highly controversial blood-sampling procedure called 'retro-orbital bleeding' which involves puncturing the eye socket as a capillary tube is pushed behind the animal's eyeball. It often causes painful eye damage and serious complications - in this test two animals suffered lesions and bleeding so severe they had to be killed. UK Government advisors on animal tests acknowledge this method can cause severe harm and therefore recommend against its use.


It may be the case that Olay have misled Twiggy through omission by emphasising the testing of finished products. When companies refer to this type of testing it is a red herring to distract from the real issue of ingredients testing - a classic ‘spin’ tactic.

We have now sent the proof of Olay’s animal testing to Twiggy, and hope that she will terminate her relationship with this cruel, disreputable brand which is fundamentally incompatible with her animal welfare principles. Watch this space!


Uncaged Campaigns 13.08.09


Uncaged 1993-2012: This is the archived website of Uncaged. All information correct at the time of archiving - November 2012.