This month, the Illinois governor signed into law a ban on animal testing on beauty products, becoming the third state to do so after California and Nevada, and joins nearly 30 countries who have already passed nation-wide bans.

So what is animal testing? Rabbits, hamsters, mice, guinea pigs and rats are used in the testing of beauty products during development, which often means having the product rubbed, force-fed or dropped into their eyes to determine reactions to certain chemicals or ingredients. This includes "lethal-dose" tests, which are tests to determine what amount of a chemical results in the animal's death. The Humane Society estimates that 100,000-200,000 animals die every year around the world due to cosmetics testing.

What can you do about it? Shop exclusively from brands that are committed to a cruelty-free world, i.e. they don't test on animals, and nor do their suppliers or third-party distributors. PETA, Leaping Bunny and Choose Cruelty-Free are three companies which offer certifications for brands that fall under these guidelines. For a complete list of brands that do not test on animals, visit Cruelty-Free Kitty's helpful guide that allows you to funnel brands based on retailer, certification and location.

For more on the story, please see this report in VegNews: