Are Vegan & Natural Beauty Products Cruelty Free?
We have all heard about Vegan and Natural skincare, hair care and make up products as they are trending a lot these days. There are a lot of questions that surround this emerging trend. There are many benefits to this trend and it's definitely worth trying these products. Whilst it's easy to wrap your head around a vegan diet, there is a lot of confusion regarding Vegan and Natural products. A lot of people even question if it’s really necessary to have an animal free label on their skin and hair care products. It sounds like too much of a deal just to buy a cleanser, moisturiser or shampoo, but when one discovers details about the animals that are hurt in the process of making these products, you might actually want to question it.
So what really are Vegan products? To break it down in simple words, vegan skin, hair and make up products are products in which none of the ingredients used come from animals, no animal ingredients, by-products or anything else used in these products is coming from animals. Vegan products are often rich in vitamins and filled with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. As vegan products use fewer ingredients, it is also easier to understand what you are putting on your skin. Vegan skincare is especially beneficial for people with sensitive skin.
Natural products for skincare, haircare and makeup mean that the product does not contain anything created artificially or is synthetic in any form. Natural products are usually grown without the use of pesticides, fertilizers and the ingredients are not genetically modified.
Cruelty free products are not necessarily Vegan. A cruelty free product means that neither the product nor the ingredients were tested on animals. A cruelty free product also ensures that their products have not been tested on animals by a supplier, manufacturer, producer or any third-party entity. It does not mean they don’t have ingredients that come from animals. The perfect example in this case would be honey, a common ingredient in skincare and haircare products. Honey is cruelty free, but it is a product made by bees and is not considered Vegan. So a product that contains Honey can be cruelty free but it will definitely not be considered as a Vegan Product.
Vegan products use natural ingredients that are derived directly from plants. This movement came about in the 90’s when there was a mad cow disease which actually prompted cosmetic companies to move away from animal materials, particularly anything involving cows. There are many animal-derived ingredients that vegan skin care brands avoid. Some of these are Carmine
(a colourant derived from beetles), Lanolin (a moisturiser that comes from washing sheep’s wool), Beeswax, Honey, Collagen, Cholesterol, Gelatin, Albumen and Keratin amongst others.
Animal ingredients in your lipstick and eyeshadow are actually much more common than you think. Some makeup products are made with animal fats like tallow which is a common hydrating ingredient and even more cringe worthy ingredients like carmine, a deep red pigment made with insects and is commonly found in red lipsticks.
Today, as we become more aware of cruelty free products, a lot of people world over are taking cruelty free pledges. These people do their part in buying only cruelty free products and are definitely a step in the right direction and worth supporting. Whilst the clean beauty pledge is not an easy step to take, it definitely makes one aware of the real cost to produce skincare, hair care and makeup. As our generation comprehends the impact our choices make on the planet, a lot of us have switched to more sustainable ways in our day to day living. We are all more conscious now of what we put on our bodies. There has been a huge surge the world over for Vegan and Natural products as they are not only cruelty free but on the whole are better for your skin's health and the planet too!!