World, Editor's Choice

Vegan Makeup: What You Should Know

You’ve probably seen ads online or heard your hipster friends talking about veganism at some point, and unless you’re a vegan yourself you’ve probably done an internal eye roll. However, when it comes to makeup there is actually a very good reason behind purchasing vegan makeup that we could all get behind.

What is Vegan Makeup?

Vegan makeup is makeup that does not contain any animal byproducts (ex. Beeswax) and is not tested on animals (cruelty-free). There are a massive amount of cruelty-free and vegan makeup brands out there right now, but unfortunately there are also many makeup companies who still opt for animal byproducts and animal testing (it’s 2017 you’d think they know better?!).

Vegan, Cruelty-Free Makeup Brands

Milani Cosmestics is certified by both PETA and The Leaping Bunny Program (CCIC) as a cruelty-free company. They do not perform testing on animals nor do they allow others to conduct animal-testing on their behalf. You go Milani Cosmetics!

Too Faced These guys (and gals) are 100% cruelty free. They even use teddy-bear hair for their makeup brushes. Not only is this super cool but super resourceful as well. They have an entire list of vegan-friendly products that are created without animal byproducts.

Tarte Cosmetics is also an approved PETA participant and does absolutely zero testing on animals – they test the products themselves to ensure top-quality standards are met. They have plenty of vegan-friendly products as well, which are easily searchable on their site and marked with a vegan stamp in the corner of the product photos.

Urban Decay is yet another vegan and cruelty-free makeup brand with amazing products. It just goes to show you that animal testing is quite unnecessary when you can get quality and reputable products without it. Buy vegan and cruelty-free makeup instead!

Lush Lush goes above and beyond and not only offers vegan products without the use of animal byproducts as well as cruelty-free, no animal testing – but they also use ethical buying. This means that they ensure their products have a positive effect on the communities in which they are harvested.

Non-Cruelty-Free Companies

Avon was removed from PETA’s cruelty-free companies; Avon is certainly not a cruelty-free brand. Due to the laws in China, where their products are manufactured, it requires the products to be tested on animal to adhere to Chinese legislation. Avon has a carefully worded statement on their website regarding animal welfare, however we all know the truth.

Benefit is another sneaky brand — on their website they have a statement in their FAQ section claiming they do not test on animals, and have not done so since 1989 — however, this is unfortunately not true. Benefit, like Avon, manufactures it’s products in China and therefore has to adhere to their laws on animal testing. Something else that is sneaky is that in 2014 Benefit had written in their animal testing policy: “We do not test our products on animals nor do we permit others to do so except where it is required by law.” Now, in 2017, we can see this has been changed to: “Benefit does not test our products on animals”.

Clinique is essentially the same story as Avon and Benefit. They only test on animals where required to by law (i.e. China) and word their statements ever so skillfully as to make innocent makeup-buyers think they are purchasing cruelty-free, truly-vegan products. It’s a grey and blurry line indeed.

Cover Girl is also on PETA’s “do test” list, which goes without saying that Cover Girl is definitely up to no-good when it comes to tricky animal testing laws and China. By now we can see a pattern, but it doesn’t make it right. It may be more expensive to manufacture in other countries, which do not have these policies, but it’s a fair trade to ensure animals are not being product-tested and potentially put in harmful situations. “Scandals” such as these can really hurt a company’s reputability and image, which will evidentially affect business at some point.

Victoria’s Secret is, well you guessed it — animal testing in China, not being transparent with consumers, removed from PETA’s cruelty-free list — you know the rest.

So why do Companies still do it?

I wish I had that answer for you. It seems there are so many other companies, such as the ones listed above, which are able to successfully manufacture and test products for quality without the use of animals and yet there are still so many companies that choose to manufacture in China where their manufacturing laws require foreign cosmetics companies to test on animals.

The least we can do, as consumers, is continue to purchase the cruelty-free and vegan products from trusted brands that we know and love, and boycott those brands that choose to continue with the inhumanity.