When you think about veganism, food is the first thing that comes to mind. Have you ever heard of vegan beauty products?
It’s a trend that’s catching up, as the demand grows. Customers today are more conscious than before about what they are using and where their cosmetics come from. It’s common practice to use animal by-products like milk, honey, beeswax in beauty items. Processing these items also takes a toll on animals. The answer to this? Vegan beauty.
Here we’ve walked you through the basics of vegan beauty, and everything you’ll need to kickstart your journey!
What does it mean?
Vegan beauty is saying “no” to animal-derived ingredients. This means that your beauty product/ skincare product does not use any ingredient that originates from animals, such as honey or milk.
And it’s not just about the ingredients. Vegan products are not tested on animals, so they are cruelty-free. These even avoid the use of any animal-based materials during their processing operations.
What are some commonly used animal ingredients in cosmetics?
Beauty and cosmetics often use many animal-based ingredients. We’ve listed out some of the common ones that you should look out for when buying vegan.
- Stearic acid
…and many others.
Why use vegan beauty?
Even if you are not vegan, it is worth considering the switch to vegan beauty. Vegan beauty often corresponds to safety, ethics, and speaks about the quality of the product. When you’re buying vegan, you’re being socially and environmentally responsible. Veganism is cruelty-free by default, so you’re saving some innocent animal lives. Vegan products are often less harsh on your skin and are far less likely to cause allergies. Since most vegan brands today are small local businesses, you’ll get high-quality products, made from locally sourced ingredients at a reasonable price.
If you already are a vegan, you’ll probably want to transition to veganism in beauty and cosmetics too! Apart from buying vegan, you should look at the sourcing of ingredients in your products. Even non-vegan products can sometimes be harmless, especially if they use ingredients found locally. For instance, palm oil is extracted from palm trees and is a vegan ingredient. However, if it sourced from an area having a large population of native orangutans, it can be more harmful as compared to wax or honey.
Vegan Beauty and Cruelty-Free
It’s important to know that vegan beauty and cruelty-free beauty are not the same. In simple terms, items can be cruelty-free, but they may not necessarily be vegan.
Cruelty-free refers to beauty products that are NOT tested on animals. Some brands may claim to be cruelty-free, but they have their product tested on animals by third-party vendors. Some areas also require brands to test products on animals “by law”, to be approved. All of these practices make your product neither cruelty-free nor vegan.
99% of all vegan products are cruelty-free too. Veganism means that your product doesn’t use ANY form of animal product directly or indirectly. However, some products are vegan by nature, but they HAVE been tested on animals at some point.
Vegan products are often developed by conscious brands. If your brand is willing to tell you exactly which of their items is vegan and why then that’s a good sign. Try staying away from brands who are unable or unwilling to give you a clear answer. You must understand the difference between vegan and cruelty-free beauty, so you can make an informed choice.
How to know if your product is vegan?
The simplest way to figure out if your product is vegan is by looking at the ingredient list. Vegan products have zero animal-derived ingredients. Even if you find one animal-derived ingredient, your product doesn’t qualify the standards of veganism. Vegan products are often a highlight, and most brands will add a logo and highlight this feature.
Just like with organic products, there is no central governing body at present that can tell you if your product is vegan. Several websites keep a track of vegan products, such as Vegan.org. Vegan.org is a popular organization for certifying vegan products. They have stringent checks which ensure that your product has no animal-derived ingredient and is 100% cruelty-free. You can run your product through this website to see if it’s listed.
Some brands themselves are vegan, meaning that every beauty product/cosmetic/skincare product they sell is vegan. Other brands are environmentally conscious, with a mix of regular and vegan beauty products. Either way, you must do your research before buying from any brand, and stay informed.
Buying vegan is about doing what’s right, both for yourself and for the environment. There are plenty of emerging brands that are trying to venture into vegan beauty, and we wish them good luck!