||For years, progress has been made in developing alternatives to animal testing as society has internationally sought methods to that end. Regulatory mandates have played a key role as well; the 7th Amendment to the Cosmetic Directive (2003/15/EC) was adopted by European Union (EU) institutions in 2003 and imposes strict deadlines to abolish in vivo animal studies for cosmetic ingredient testing. The other crucial regulation pressing for alternative methods is REACH, which was adopted by the European Council and the European Parliament in December 2006. It is worth mentioning that the ban on the testing of chemicals on animals refers strictly to compliance with requirements of the Cosmetic Directive. [...] Alternative test methods have the potential to reduce animal testing; however, the extent to which in vitro methods can be replaced is questionable. This article summarizes validated alternatives to test the safety of cosmetic ingredients. It also illustrates how great a challenge it is to devise a proper alternative method.