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Is Your Make – up Really Cruelty – Free?

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Even if you’re not a vegan but vegetarian, you might want to know that some of your much loved makeup may look innocent enough but could actually contain crushed beetles or other animal products.  So what exactly defines vegan make – up? And is it hard to get affordable vegan make – up?

First of all, you should know that there is a difference between cruelty-free and vegan cosmetics.

Cruelty – free merely means that the company has not tested their products on animals at any stage of the development but their products may contain animal ingredients, which is not exactly cruelty – free at all. Therefore, it is a good idea to use as many vegan products as possible. Some companies such as  L’Oreal, Estee Lauder, Olay – just to name a few – who claim to sell cruelty-free products might not test on animals since the 2013 ban that prohibits products being tested on animals in the EU but when selling their products abroad, they may have to test on animals to comply with local laws. Any cosmetic company that wants to sell their goods in China, for instance, has to submit their products so that they can be tested in Chinese laboratories where about 300,000 animals are being used each year.

Vegan products, on the other hand, don’t contain any animal ingredients or animal derived ingredients. This includes for example honey, beeswax, and carmine (Ever wondered where that bright red colour of your lipstick comes from? Crushed cochineal insects may have been used to make this product.) There are many more animal ingredients that can be found in mainstream makeup and which you probably have never heard of.

Guanine (CI 75170) is fish scales that have been scraped off dead fish. It is used to create a pearly shimmer in nail polish, blushes and eye.

Even though products that are denoted as vegan by organizations such as Vegan Action and The Vegan Society, they may not be entirely cruelty-free. It can be tough to be a vegan, sometimes… The best you can do is to check the company’s website. Most vegan companies will gladly advertise that their products are vegan and/or cruelty – free. Get suspicious if the company doesn’t provide any information or gives unclear statements when being contacted.         

Vegan and cruelty – free products can cost a fortune. One of my favourite brands is E.L.F, a cruelty – free company that has gone 100% vegan after replacing their animal hair brushed with synthetic brushes. Their make – up was vegan before and still is. And all of their products are sold at an amazing low price. This change resulted from a strong collaboration with PETA. Visit PETA’s website for their list of vegan and cruelty – free products. You can also easily check if a company is vegan or cruelty – free by using their search bar.                

I would also like to recommend the vegan and cruelty – free makeup brand               Luvia Cosmetics which sells best long – lasting vegan lipstick I have ever tried so far.

Next time you pull out your makeup drawer you might want to ask yourself: Is my makeup really cruelty – free?

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Jenny Bui

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