For the past few years, veganism grew in popularity and reached more and more parts of our lives – it’s no longer just a set of dietary rules, but a whole lifestyle aimed at helping the well-being of our furry friends. One of the most important fields we can implement it in is our beauty routine – here are some of the best reasons to switch to vegan makeup and skincare products.
What makes a beauty product vegan?
Vegan cosmetics (e.g., shower gel, lip balms, creams for sensitive skin) and makeup products (including nail polish, lipsticks, eyeliners, makeup brushes, and so on) are completely free of animal-derived ingredients. Being vegan should also mean no animal testing was involved, but unfortunately not all “vegan” beauty brands (especially the industry’s giants) uphold that principle. Some do the testing themselves, while others use more shady tactics like delegating tests to outside contractors to keep their “vegan” masquerade going. So, if you want to make sure no animal was harmed in a cosmetic’s production process, always check ingredients and seek products with both vegan and cruelty-free certification or switch to local brands that can be fact-checked easily. Remember to double-check the certificates with the official lists (published by e.g., PETA, Leaping Bunny Organization, Vegan.org or country-specific programs), as the logos might be just a ruse.
Best reasons to go vegan with your beauty routine
Cosmetics with vegan-friendly formulas (so based on mineral oil and plant-based ingredients) can bring you various benefits. While there are many reasons for switching to vegan skincare products and makeup, here are 7 of the main ones:
1: No animal-derived ingredients = less animal suffering
With lower demand for animal-based products, the number of inhumane animal farms and breeding facilities could be significantly reduced. With the elimination of animal tests, we can prevent many horrific incidents and simply sick practices involved in such procedures. Thanks to the vegan way becoming more and more popular practically every day, it’s now a realistic goal and not just wishful thinking like it was a few decades ago.
2: No parts of dead animals will end up on your face
Even the seemingly innocent ingredients like carmine (red dye used in e.g., lipsticks and eyeshadows) or squalene (a quite common ingredient in all sorts of creams – sunscreens, moisturizers, revitalizers etc.) come from animal corpses. The former is made from crushed-up Dactylopius coccus beetles (to get 1 kg of carmine, about 155k of beetles must die), while the latter is an oil extracted from shark’s liver. Another common ingredient of this sort is gelatin – it’s produced from collagen extracted from bones, tendons, cartilages, hooves, or horns. A somewhat less morbid (or not – depending on the method of procuring it) would be sheep placenta extract. Yes, all that and more can end up on your skin and face if you stick to non-vegan cosmetics.
3: They’re full of nutrients and free of toxins
Thanks to being entirely plant-based, vegan beauty and makeup products are full of natural antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and other beneficial microelements. You can find a lot of vitamin A, C and E, iron, zinc, selenium, natural oils etc. in them. Even more importantly, none of their ingredients is toxic or harmful to our bodies – keep in mind that our skin absorbs up to 60% of what we put on it. Moreover, anything that penetrates the skin goes straight to the bloodstream, so it’s crucial to keep anything even remotely toxic far away from it. “Normal” cosmetic products don’t stray from harmful substances such as Parabens, Petrolatum, Diethanolamine or Formaldehyde (formalin). Thus, vegan products are less likely to irritate your skin (even if you have dry or oily skin) and won’t cause any serious health issues. Of course, some ingredients can still cause allergic reactions, but it’s nothing as serious as what the “normal” stuff can do to you.
4: Vegan makeup means higher quality
As most vegan products aren’t mass-produced, the manufacturers are far more likely to use high-quality ingredients and don’t pack them full of fillers. So the end product ends up with just the necessary stuff – you can easily verify it on the label. The list of ingredients will be way shorter than in “normal” products. Thus, by picking fully vegan beauty brands, you can be sure their products are of the highest possible quality.
5: 100% eco-friendly packaging
Vegan makeup and skincare products come in plastic-free, fully biodegradable containers and boxes, so by picking them you won’t add to the huge amount of plastic waste already littering our planet. To put things into perspective – there are several plastic “islands” floating about in the South Pacific. The largest of them (the so-called Great Pacific Garbage Patch) is two times bigger than Texas and thrice as big as France (1,6 million square km). By switching to vegan personal care products, you can stop adding to that horrifying monstrosity.
6: The ingredients come from sustainable crops
As caring about the environment is one of the top vegan lifestyle principles, every ingredient used by vegan brands is grown and harvested completely eco-friendly. Vegan farms use sustainable methods and don’t leave a permanent mark on the environment – there’s no deforestation, grass burning, chemical soaking of the soil, etc. Switching to a truly vegan brand is thus the best option for any environment-conscious person.
7: They aren’t as expensive as people make them look
The common opinion on vegan makeup and beauty products is that they are really expensive. That’s just a misconception spread by the adherents of the “old order” – in reality, vegan options are on par with good quality “normal” products when it comes to price range. In fact, they are way cheaper than many “luxurious and superb” products signed by “high-end” global brands – you don’t pay for the brand name, but just for the product and its effects.
As you can see, vegan body care and makeup products (such as mud masks, eye creams, lip masks, hair products, etc.) are not only good for you and your skin but also help our planet and the animals inhabiting it. Going vegan with your beauty routine is a sure way for healthy skin and a clean conscience. With each one of us doing so, we’re one step closer to a cruelty-free and eco-friendly beauty industry.