What: By 2013, no European cosmetic products (at least legal ones) will be tested on animals – in theory -  thanks to two new bans that outlaw animal testing on cosmetic ingredients and consequently, the sale of animal tested cosmetics.

What We Say: Bravo to the EU for taking such a difficult step toward animal rights. Even those of us who aren’t PETA members like to hear that “no animals were harmed in the making of this makeup.” British-speaking lab rats are probably throwing a party right now.

But it’s a lot more complicated than that. After all, there’s a reason animals are tested in the first place, and that reason isn’t that creators of cosmetics hate animals. Unfortunately, we just haven’t found alternatives that are as effective as animal testing… yet. Although the FDA doesn’t require US brands to test their cosmetics on animals, it does require such cosmetics to be safe. And if you’ve got to have a lab rat on hand to prove such a thing (which is often the case), well, you’ve got to do some animal testing.

So, what’s Europe’s secret? Well, if all the players in the industry are dealing with the same legalities, they’re all about even. We could see some of them coming to America to market their animal tested products, getting back their edge.

Do you care if your cosmetics are tested on animals? If so, what brands do you buy – Avon, anything else?