A’pieu’s brand personality is young, bubbly, and energetic. We wish we could tell you that A’pieu is as passionate about cruelty-free and vegan policies as the Gen Z’s they sell to, but we can’t.

A’pieu is not 100% cruelty-free or vegan as its products are sold where animal testing is required by law. It also cannot be considered vegan as it is not cruelty-free.
This Korean beauty house is all about uncomplicated skincare and playful cosmetics. A’pieu is seriously affordable- which makes sense because it’s the little sister to the cult K-beauty brand Missha.

Since A’pieu’s 2008 online store launch, the brand has gone on to sell in Europe and North America and is wildly popular throughout Asia.

But fun branding doesn’t make a product ethical, sustainable, or kind. Can you trust A’pieu’s cruelty-free and vegan policies (if you can find them)?

However, if you are looking for alternatives to A'pieu in the same price range with the same quality, click here. 

A’pieu Ethical Overview

Cruelty-free: No

Vegan: No (A’pieu cannot be considered vegan if it is not cruelty-free)

Clean ingredients: Yes

Sustainable & Ethical: Minimal efforts

Mica Mining Policy: Undetermined

RSPO Palm Oil Certified: Undetermined

A’pieu is Not Cruelty-Free

Test any of its products or ingredients on animals


Purchase any ingredients tested on animals within its supply chain


Distribute its products to any countries that require animal testing by law.


A’pieu is owned by Abel C&C Co, and it’s the sister company to Missha- another K-Beauty brand popular in China.

Does A’pieu Test on Animals?

A’pieu allows animal testing to be conducted when required by law and that it ships to countries like China.

What Is A’pieu’s Cruelty-Free Status in 2023?

There is no official statement regarding animal testing or cruelty-free policies on the A’pieu  website. We emailed them to ask about this, but we haven’t received any feedback yet.

A’pieu Has No Cruelty-Free Certification in 2023

While we’d love to see this change, as long as the brand prioritizes profit over being cruelty-free, we can’t see that happening.

Ideally, all brands that consider themselves cruelty-free should be Leaping Bunny certified.

While you might know PETA very well – it surprisingly doesn't hold the strictest cruelty-free regulations. Leaping Bunny certification is the gold standard to live up to.

Did you know that in the US, most animal testing is regulated by the Animal Welfare Act (1966)? If you did know this, did you know that this act does not include birds, rats, and mice which make up 95% of animals used in research?

Is A’pieu Sold Where Animal Testing is Required By Law?

Yes, A’pieu distributes its products in China, where animal testing on cosmetics is required as products arrive at the border.

China has a shocking track record. It is the country with the most animal testing globally, with over 20 million animals used per year.

However, if you live in China or are concerned about its cruel beauty policies, there are a couple of loopholes.

Here's how to find cruelty-free cosmetics in China: Are Cosmetics Made in China Cruelty-Free?

A’pieu is Not Vegan

A’pieu does not label any of its ranges or products as vegan. And frankly, that is a good thing.

It would be hard to consider any of its products free of animal-derived ingredients as “vegan” because it’s not 100% cruelty-free.

Some of the most common animal-derived ingredients that A’pieu uses are: (honey / squalane / milk-derived lactic acid)

If you're interested in finding vegan brand alternatives – keep reading or click on this link: A’pieu brand alternatives. 

Vegan Alternatives to A’pieu


price range

100% vegan


$5 - $15


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$5 - $28


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$16 - $28


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$3 - $24


Leaping Bunny

A’pieu is Not Considered Natural and Organic

A’pieu isn’t considered natural or organic. 

However, it aims to use safe, simple, and clean ingredients. 

Its whole ethos is to make clean formulas and fun products that inspire young women.

All products use a certain amount of synthetic ingredients in their formulas. A’pieu is no exception – but it does choose to use better or clean synthetics.If a synthetic ingredient is "clean," it means it is safe and non-toxic for us. Its purpose is to preserve the stability of a beauty formulation.

A’pieu Has A 91% Allergen-Free Ranking

According to Skin Safe, A’pieu has a 91% allergen-free ranking for each product.

Many of A’pieu’s products are free of allergens such as parabens, lanolin, topical antibiotics, gluten, MCI/ MI, nickel, oil, irritants, dyes, and SLSs. 

Reading the ingredient list is crucial because A’pieu is not 100% hypoallergenic or non-comedogenic, and they do not claim to be.

However, certain products are specifically for these concerns, so make sure you buy what your skin needs. 

The EU/UK Have Stricter Ingredient Regulations

We don’t want to scare you, but you HAVE to read up on any product’s ingredient list before you make a purchase – especially if you live within the United States. The reason why will shock you.

The FDA has only banned or restricted 11 harmful chemicals from cosmetics within the country. Europe and the UK, on the other hand, have banned 1,328!

A’pieu uses some clean beauty ingredients, and the Korean beauty industry has strict standards. So you shouldn’t be too worried about hidden nasties in their products.

But it’s still worth knowing that with makeup, you want to avoid these ingredients:

  • Butylated compounds (BHA, BHT) 
  • Ethanolamine compounds (DEA, MEA, and TEA)
  • Carbon black
  • Coal tar and benzene
  • Untreated mineral oils
  • Lead and other heavy metals
  • PPG, PEG, and polysorbate 

A’pieu Is Not Sustainable and Ethical

Sadly, A’pieu does not mention sustainability policies, ethical initiatives AT ALL on their website. Or their Instagram accounts. 

We found one blog post where the author bought an A’pieu sheet mask because of the eco-friendly packaging, but we can’t find evidence that any sustainable packaging exists. 

On an ethical front, there was a #metoo moment for the brand, which, took action and apologized for a team leader’s inappropriate abuse of power. 

But the environment? Waste from the beauty industry?

A’pieu could begin to take environmental accountability by:

  • Using ethically mined MICA sourced without the use of child labor.
  • Using Responsibly Sourced Palm Oil (RSPO certified).
  • Avoiding extra packaging and only using sustainable or recycled materials (paper) when needed. 

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot to say about A’Pieu. Is it cute with effective products? Yes. Does it care about animal welfare or the planet? 

Based on the brand's actions, no.

There’s also the lack of clarity of ingredients sourcing, like palm oil and mica. We think there’s a lot of room for improvement; firstly, becoming cruelty-free, and secondly, transparency in the supply chain. 

Lastly, becoming cruelty-free and gaining certification. Do we think this will happen anytime soon? Probably not. 

But A’pieu does listen to customers when there’s an outcry. So let’s speak up about what we will and won’t accept. 

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