By PAUL HARRIS
Extreme measures: Jacqueline Traide is restrained and has her mouth clamped open while being subjected to brutal animal testing practices at the Lush store in London's Regent Street today
They dragged her along with a rope around her neck and pushed her down on a bench.
It was feeding time for Jacqueline Traide and you could tell from the look on her face she was terrified. First, they stretched her mouth open with two metal hooks attached to a strap around her head.
The man in the white coat grabbed hold of her ponytail and tugged it until she tilted backwards.
By the time he had finished spooning food down her throat, she was choking, gagging and trying to break free.
For the next ten hours, this attractive, 24-year-old artist was given injections, had her skin abraded and smothered in lotions and potions – then endured having a strip of her hair shaved off in front of stunned onlookers in one of Britain’s busiest streets.
Horrific treatment: The 24-year-old re-enacts a procedure where cosmetics are dropped into an animal's eyes
Aghast: Horrified shoppers stop, stare and take photos of Miss Traide as she sits on a plinth wired up to 'electrodes' in the shop window
And somewhere else in the world, perhaps in a laboratory carrying out tests for an expensive new mascara, a helpless animal was being subjected to precisely the same treatment.
The difference was that Jacqueline – publicly humiliated, shivering with cold and nursing the red-raw skin on her cheek – was free to go home when the experiment ended.
The animal would have suffered a miserable death.
Making a point: Oliver Cronk force-feeds Miss Traide while attached to a mesh of wires to represent electrodes in a stunt designed in protest against animal testing
Jacqueline volunteered for her starring role in the deliberately shocking performance to underline a campaign aimed at drawing attention to the pain and cruelty inflicted on animals during laboratory tests on cosmetics.
Dressed in nothing but a flesh-coloured body stocking, she was put on display in the shop window of Lush cosmetic store’s branch in Regent Street, London, to re-enact widely used tests.
The ‘cruelty-free’ chain is helping to spearhead a Humane Society International campaign to end cosmetic testing on animals.
Strong-headed: Miss Traide has her hair shaved as is often the case with laboratory animals. Humane Society International and Lush Cosmetics have joined forces to launch the largest-ever global campaign to end animal testing for cosmetics
Stunt: The Oxford Brookes university student was 'experimented' on by performance artist Oliver Cronk, dressed as a clipboard-toting lab technician
Thousands of shoppers, tourists and office workers witnessed Jacqueline, a social sculpture student at Oxford Brookes university, being roughly manhandled and administered by performance artist Oliver Cronk, dressed as a clipboard-toting lab technician.
Her eyes streamed from an irritant he sprayed into them at intervals and her arm began to bleed when she struggled to resist an injection.
Public stage: Passengers craned from open-top buses as passersby took mobile phone footage of the spectacle before signing a petition or simply turning and walking away
Perhaps the most startling moment was when he gripped her head and used electronic clippers to shave a large strip from her hairline – common practice in laboratories when monitors or electrodes need to be attached to an animal’s skin.
Passengers craned from open-top buses as passersby took mobile phone footage of the spectacle – before signing a petition or simply turning and walking away.
Jacqueline, who appeared nervous when I spoke to her before she took up position, remained mute throughout her ordeal – but gave the clear impression that not all her pain was an act.
She told me: 'I hope it will plant the seed of a new awareness in people to really start thinking about what they go out and buy and what goes into producing it.'
Moments later, someone fastened the rope around her neck.
A bit too real: Jacqueline remained mute throughout her ordeal ¿ but gave the clear impression that not all her pain was an act
Terrifying: Some of the paraphernalia used on Jacqueline as the protesters attempted to closely mimic the conditions which face animals in labs around the world