Monday, May 16, 2016

A journey towards cruelty-free beauty routine

My lifestyle has changed quite a bit over the years when it comes my consumption of animal products.  When I was in my early teens my family went vegetarian for a short time.  When I was in my early twenties, I went vegetarian for several years.  After that I went vegetarian + fish and chicken.  And after that I went back to eating meat.  And now I eat a ton of meat because of my ketogenic lifestyle.  I've always seen pros and cons to eating one way or another and am not here to tell anyone what they should or shouldn't do.  I am content right now with what I eat.  That may change or evolve over time and I'm ok with that.  I don't like putting myself in a certain group, I'd rather do what feels right for me.  After all, I only answer to myself.

Something I would like to do a better job of is using more cruelty-free beauty products.  I may have at times in my life been a bit of a beauty product hoarder.  And I may have a set of drawers in my closet dedicated just to storing makeup and beauty products.  I know, not a good habit and something I am working on with my whole decluttering/minimalism strategy.  In line with my desire to pare down my products, I am very interested in moving away from products that are tested on animals, use products (purchased) that are tested on animals, or are owned by companies that test on animals.  I don't expect this to be an initiative in which I dump half my items that aren't cruelty-free but rather a slow migration to weed out items that I'm no longer comfortable with.

This will be hard.

I can already tell you right now that some of my favorite brands and go-to items currently test on animals. A lot of that has to do with their desire to sell products in China. The China government requires that beauty products are tested on animals before they can be sold there.  So while a brand may not test normally for sales in the US, they have given into China sales and done the testing.  I get it.  It's all about the money to them.  Unfortunately, it's not all about the money to me.  So those brands are off my list too. My definition of cruelty-free will be those brands which do not test or are not associated with companies that test on animals.  I used the website, Cruelty Free Kitty to help with identifying what was and was not cruelty-free.  It has a lot of really valuable information.

I will also mention that this isn't the first time I've gone down this path.  In my early twenties when I went completely vegetarian, I also went cruelty-free.  I was also less beauty-product obsessed and it was fairly painless at the time.  Brands have changed and many new products have come on the market. At the time, there was a fantastic magazine called Natural Living that I read and loved.  Unfortunately, it is no longer published a long with several other natural living magazines that have come and gone over the years.

I'm sharing with you my current list of products and favorite brands that I use daily.  Items that have a * are cruelty-free and I will keep using (unless of course, I just decide to try something new) but everything else I want to eventually replace.  My plan is use up the products that I have on-hand and then replace them with a good cruelty-free alternative.  I'll be sharing how this process goes (whether I am successful or not) and appreciate any replacement product recommendations.

Bath & Body:
 - Shampoo / Conditioner - Systeme Biologe (Matrix), Tigi Bed Head
- Body Wash - Philosophy*, Soap & Glory
- Body Butter / Lotion - Soap & Glory, Origins
- Shaving Cream - EOS

- Moisturizer - Garnier
- Face Wash - Neutrogena
- Lotion - Pacifica*
- Mask - Formula 10.0.6*, Freeman

- Foundation - Estee Lauder
- Concealer - NYX, Urban Decay
- Blush - Tarte*
- Eyebrow - Anastasia*
- Mascara - Benefit
- Eyeshadow - Lorac, Urban Decay, Tarte*
- Powder - Rimmel
- Lips - Buxom

- Polish - Zoya*
- Remover - Zoya*

These obviously aren't all the brands I own or use but these are my favorites.  Something that was surprising to me as I researched what brands were cruelty-free were those brands that are marketed as natural, green, environmentally friendly that actually weren't. I was sure that brands like Origins, Burt's Bees, Fresh... were cruelty-free yet they weren't.  I was sadly disappointed.

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