We often focus on food and fashion when we talk about veganism…BUT today I’d like to talk about beauty products! There are so many wonderful vegan beauty brands, and you can click here for a list of them composed by the lovely @gabbyanalise.
Sure, vegan beauty products are better than products that are not cruelty free. However, it is important to keep in mind that a vegan product does not automatically mean a good product.
Why? For one, there are many vegan brands that continue to use chemicals that are not only harmful to humans, but the Earth. There is the assumption that when these chemicals are i.e. washed off bodies, they will not impact the environment because of proper sanitation and sewers. However, this could not be further from the truth, and they still frequently pollute the waters and environment. It is also important to remember that even if proper sanitation systems processed these chemicals “correctly,” the creation of many chemicals frequently requires heavy, chemical processes that will release toxins into our air/environment.
Furthermore, we are often told products like shampoos, cosmetics etc are bad for us; the listed chemicals below are the reason why. Furthermore, shampoos, cleansing agents, and EVEN cosmetics do not have to be bad for us; instead they can benefit us! But only if we make that choice!
Sodium Lauryl/Sodium Laureth Sulfate- You’ll find these chemicals in your cleanser, and shampoo. They strip our hair and skin of our natural, healthy oils and this can speed up the premature aging process. (It causes split ends too!)
Parabens-Hormone disruptors, cancer causing factors, etc.
Glycols-Stay away from glycols as they also can disrupt our hormones and are heavily processed.
Petroleum-derived ingredients (such as PEGs, Petrolatum, etc)- Petroleum-derived ingredients are also incredibly processed and these chemical processes are toxic to the environment. Products like petroleum jelly can clog our pores.
Silicones (such as Dimethicone)- Silicones are synthetic substances that are often used to give the product a more “smooth” effect. Don’t be fooled as they are huge pore cloggers!
Artifical colours and Fragrances-artificial colours and fragrances have been shown to create hormone imbalances and frequently have cancer causing substances.
There are so many chemicals to avoid, unfortunately, I won’t be able to list them all/thoroughly and describe them here.Nevertheless, if you all would like a more detailed explanation a quick google search will do it for you! I personally love to go on http://chemicaloftheday.squarespace.com. This is a great website that frequently debunks many arguments that favour these chemicals!
It can take a long time to familiarise yourself with all of these chemicals but, it will also help to go on the EWG website and enter in the name of the chemical to find out how harmful it is for your body. Do keep in mind, that not everything is always up to date on the website, so it is important to do an extra search on a product that is listed as unharmful on the EWG site.
Personally, I am really thankful to have grown up in a household that stressed using organic beauty products only. Yet, I never felt like I really knew what was in my products. As a result, I began to extensively research the ingredients in not just my own beauty products, but other beauty products that I would see in a conventional store. Researching the conventional products’ chemical/ingredient compositions and effects reminded me of why I continue to choose vegan & organic. It also made it easier for me to remember why certain chemicals were bad and to check my labels if I ever feel like giving a new brand a try! Instead of memorising which ones to stay away from, I sought to fully understand why.
Additionally, researching the extracts in my own products also helped me feel more connected to nature as I learned about how each one of them could benefit myself. I have noticed that consumers often buy something that says vegan or organic (products can say organic even if they only have one ingredient that is organic!) without really knowing what is in our products. This kind of uninformed buying can often leave us unaware on what is in our products. Instead of just believing something is good for us, we should always seek to understand why and find out ourselves! I have also noticed that we often assume a product is safe if it doesn’t have parabens or sulfates (as these two kinds of chemicals have really become a mainstream concern) ,but we often forget that there are so many other ingredients to worry about, and that just because things are not in the spotlight it doesn’t mean we should forget about them! I cannot emphasise this enough!
With all of that said, here are some of my personal favourite beauty brands that I will use forever and ever:
Living Libations: I love Living Libations because everything is handcrafted, wild & organic, and so incredibly fresh. (These products also have a VERY long shelf-life due to how pure they are!) My favourite is definitely the ‘Seabuckthorn Best Skin Ever’ (Honestly, I am in love with all of their products and have been using them for ages!) I also love the Seabuckthorn Shampoo and Conditioner; they are so healthy for your hair!
Kora Organics: Created by the beautiful Miranda Kerr. Her products are all absolutely heavenly, and it is the brand I choose when I use something that is more ‘manufactured,’ and not handcrafted!
I know the above two are not always affordable. I have tried a cheaper brand-ACURE Organics. It isn’t the brand I prefer to use/think is the best, but so far, I haven’t found an ingredient in them I dislike.
As for cosmetics brands:
Vapour Organic Beauty: Wonderful assortment of lip colours and eye makeup. (It is a bit cheaper than the last 4 brands.)
100% Pure: It’s products are also more affordable than the below brands. They also have many face and body care products. (I do like to stay away from their products that have hydrogenated oils, etc in them.)
RMS Beauty: The Lip2Cheek makes a wonderful organic lip stain!
Kjaer Weis: The mascara is wonderful and I am looking forward to trying more of their products.
Georgie Beauty: I love their false eyelashes and their eyelash glue is FREE of harmful chemicals that are frequently found in eyelash glues (formaldehyde, etc!) The eyelash curler also has organic aloe vera!
Nudus Lip Australia: The best brand for lipstick. Their lipsticks are highly pigmented, creamy, and go on smoothly!
I know many people think these brands are pricey but, I definitely recommend choosing them over popular so-called ‘luxury’ (chemical ridden) brands that are priced the same as these brands!
Happy beauty hunting!