Rocket’s Backstory From GOTG Should Make You Double-Check Beauty Brands’ Stance On Animal Cruelty


You know the movie is making you question things when the whole theatre is in complete silence, one that is punctured only by the gentle sounds of someone sobbing. This was the scenario when Marvel  fans (and others) went to watch Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, directed by James Gunn. The movie took fans on a gut-wrenching roller coaster ride where they got to witness Rockets’ backstory. The fan favourite character Rocket the Raccoon, who loves to throw around snarky comments, shoot aliens, and save the planet, endures a lot. In reality, he is just a fragile baby who has been used for inhumane experiments. PETA has called this movie an animal rights masterpiece.


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Scenes where he was shown as a little baby shackled to an operating table along with his other animal friends (Lylla the otter, Floor the rabbit, and Teefs the Walrus), being tested for various unethical experiments, tortured and assaulted to near death, are heartbreaking. If you are from the “does the dog die in the end” category, this movie might be quite hard on you. The movie dwells on these scenes of animal cruelty for much longer than one might expect. While Rocket and his friends were CGI-created, in reality, there are millions of other animals going through this cruel process, especially in the global beauty industry.

The Real Price Of Beauty

When we buy a beauty product, we depend majorly on the internet reviews and for hygiene, we (only) check the expiry date on the label. But what most consumers miss out on is the ‘cruelty-free’ tag.

While we often check labels for expiry dates and more, this tag seems to go under the radar. Before beauty brands can get their products on the shelves, they need to ensure that the product meets certain criteria- in that it is safe for humans to use. And while the safety of humans is accounted for, these tests use animals to confirm this. Under these tests, laboratory testing on animals is done to ensure that the product won’t have physical side-effects. All tests done on animals, even the ones tagged as mild, have the potential to inflict pain and suffering, both physical and mentally.

via Marvel (Youtube)

While many countries have strict laws against animal testing, some brands, nonetheless, opt to conduct it. Guinea pigs, mice, rats, and rabbits are most commonly tested on. These animals are given ID numbers like 89P13, like Lylla and Rocket’s, their ID numbers are often tattooed on their chests or behind their ears.

via PETA

These animals are often kept in small and separate cages. They go through evaluations for skin irritation, eye irritation, and any form of toxic reaction and inflammation during these procedures. Needless to say, these testing parameters are painful for animals with often having a lasting impact; fatalities are not uncommon.

Animal Testing In India

According to Indian Law Portal, every year 1-2 million animals die because of these tests all around the world. In India, cosmetics tested on animals and the import of such products are banned as per Rules 135B and 148C of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945. Animal testing is banned in India, but there are many international brands that engage in animal testing that are widely available in the country. On the bright side, a quick look inside the Indian beauty market will reveal that there is a long list of brands that are not only choosing to be ethically correct but also sharing light on alternatives to test the products for efficacy and side-effects. One of them is Kama Ayurveda a PETA certified cruelty-free brand. No products under the brand’s portfolio are tested on animals. The beauty brand opts for in vitro and in vivo testing from accredited Clinical Research Organisations.

via Getty

According to Anand Srinivasan, Director in Coimbatore (Compliance, Regulatory & R&D) at Kama Ayurveda, “There are better and sophisticated methods of testing, which are not only quicker, but also effective. Moreover, it’s important for brands to understand that today’s consumers are more mindful of the products they use. They pay close attention to not only the list of ingredients but also other initiatives, such as the philosophy of the brand–from animal testing to sustainable initiatives and product labels. To address the concerns of the discerning customers, and to be relevant in today’s day and age, these are small yet impactful changes that brands need to adopt to build loyalty amongst their consumers”.

So, if you want to help real-life furries friends like Rocket and Lylla do check for the cruelty-free label on your beauty buys. To make it much easier here our five recommended homegrown beauty brands:

1. Kama Ayurveda

2. Fae Beauty

3. Neemli Naturals


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A post shared by Neemli Naturals (@neemli)

4. Daughter Earth

5. Kiro Beauty


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A post shared by KIRO (@kirobeauty)

Also, read Skincare PSA: You’re Probably Applying Your Products Wrong

- Digital Writer


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