Vegan Cosmetic Advice, Please!

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Growing up following my older brother around, I missed out on a ton of girly opportunities. It didn’t help that my mother, during the time I hit puberty, was on a natural kick and wasn’t shaving her armpits or legs, let alone wearing any makeup.

When those nasty girls at school started teasing me about the fact I didn’t shave my legs yet (I couldn’t have been any older than 11!) I had to sneak a shave with my dad’s face razor—sorry pops!—because my mom would not get me my own razor the necessary shaving accoutrement. Ma also wouldn’t let me wear normal deodorant for a while so I was stanky. Eventually, maybe when she realized I was practically being hazed at school/sneaking a shave behind her back, she got me a nice shaving kit with a note that read “From your hairy but loving mama.” You’re awesome, Ma! Anyways, she has since given up her European look (do French women really not shave or is that some ignorant American belief…when I was in France I didn’t notice any particularly hairy women…).

Where is this rant going? Oh yes, I don’t particularly know how to be a girl. That’s not totally true, I love dresses and frilly underwear. But I have NO idea how to lip balm—sometimes I go a little wild and wear tinted!—and mascara. I also have a bunch of makeup that is probably a good five years old when I went through this I-will-learn-to-wear-makeup phase. It includes foundation, bronzer, blush, eye shadow and eyeliner—all which should be thrown out because it is way too old.

So I have decided maybe I will try to get back into some sort of beauty routine! And now the issue is, where can I find cruelty free makeup that is still quality? So far I have been collecting MAC and Bare Minerals swag. Also I got Alicia Silverstone’s line, Ecotools, variety of makeup brushes. Actually I don’t think it is her line but they just use her as a spokeswoman? Whatever, they got me…

Here is a nifty list by Leaping Bunny that highlights cruelty free cosmetic companies so I don’t have to think.  

What cruelty free brands do you use? Please tell me I must know!

About the author  ⁄ Zoe

Zoe writes about food and sex on SexyTofu.com.

9 Comments

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011

    Ok dear daughter, so yes, I do shave now, and sometimes I am still conflicted with it but since my work as a retreat facilitator at our farm in upper Fairfield County brings me in contact with many “upper crust” clients and I want them to feel comfortable, I shave. A bit ridiculous if you really think about it what we woman do to “fit in” and not offend? (not everywhere…Greek women, and Mediterranean women generally, haven’t been bamboozled into laboriously ridding themselves of underarm and leg hair..this practice which started in the early 1900′s has been confined mostly to English-speaking women of North America and Great Britain, though “fashion” has it slowly spreading) Doesn’t it seem a bit unfair and sexist that our male mates can be as hairy as nature see’s fit and feel quite comfortable about it and take no flack or second looks or stares, where as woman can’t? And why is this? We woman, even many feminists (like your ma!) still avoid the “fluffy” natural look so as not to offend and to continue offering a nubile leg and armpit (and more!) to society. Woe to the shaving industry if we woman say fxxx it…and throw in the razor. Ok, enough on shaving… make-up! Again, who is gaining here besides the cosmetics industry? Don’t we woman have enough to do in our busy lives that we have to spend our time and hard earned bucks camouflaging our faces to buy into the concept (promoted originally by the movie industry and now continued by cosmetic companies), the concept of flawless beauty? Ya want your mom’s advise? Stand tall, flash those pearly whites, spend your extra time blogging (or cooking) and put your extra pennies in the bank! You are beautiful just as you are, as are we all.

    • Reply
      June 30, 2011

      Thanks ma! But makeup is fun sometimes, like playing dress up, no? I still like playing dress up..

  • Reply
    June 30, 2011

    One thing that many women oversee is that all makeup has both a shelf life and a expiration date. If you still using makeup that is over a year old, then you could be adding more then makeup or cosmetics to your face and body. A woman can absorbed up to 5 pounds of toxins in just a month from using bad or outdated products.

    For example;
    “A mascara tube is a dark, wet environment — the perfect breeding ground for bacteria which means that mascara has a 3 month life once opened or exposed to air.

    True, vegan cosmetics are a safe alternative to mainstream cosmetics, but one still needs to be careful towards their use and storage.

    Buying a product because it states “vegan”, “organic” or “natural” needs to be taken with a grain of salt so to speak as many companies market the heck out of these terms and fall very short of the truth behind the label.

    Consumer education is lacking towards making good cosmetic choices, reading labels is important, but many consumers need 20x magnification to read the small print even with 20/20 vision, thus many consumers never take the time to do so and we all should.

    • Reply
      July 1, 2011

      Oh man, I will never look at my mascara the same again! Thanks for the info!

  • Reply
    Stacie Bergman
    June 30, 2011

    You could always try and tackle making your own makeup:) It would be a little bit difficult but it could be fun! PLUS, you would have control over the ingredients.

  • Reply
    Jaz
    July 2, 2011

    Sunny is the best!
    http://www.veganbeautyreview.com/
    you can even learn to make lipbalm:)

  • Reply
    Courtney
    July 14, 2011

    LOTS of cosmetics are cruelty free, but it’s harder to find out if all the ingredients are vegan. Many products aren’t vegan just because they contain bee’s wax, which personally doesn’t bother me. Dairy derivatives and even animal fat are still surprisingly common, though.

    PETA is the obvious source for a complete list of animal-friendly companies, but the list is overwhelming. I think they even make some smartphone apps so you can look up the brands while out shopping. Urban Decay will tell you which products are vegan on the label and which ones aren’t. Why they don’t just make everything vegan, I don’t know. Their former sister-brand turned Walmart-brand Hard Candy is cruelty free.

    So you don’t have to slog through the Peta list, I’ll list a couple from memory. Revlon is not tested on animals, but they don’t tell you so on the package. All the Estee Lauder Brands (Clinique, Mac, Bobbi Brown, Aveda, Origins, etc) are not tested on animals. Essence, a brand from Germany that’s now available at Ulta, is not tested on animals because (I swear I read this somewhere) it’s actually illegal to do so over there.

    The big ones to avoid are the L’Oreal group, (Lancome, Maybeline, Garnier) and P&G/CoverGirl. The Body Shop was one of the first brands to not test and tell you so (not sure if they were before or after Paul Mitchell) but they are owned by L’Oreal! It’s confusing!

    • Reply
      July 15, 2011

      Ahh thank you Courtney! Life saver.

  • Reply
    August 10, 2012

    I use https://theallnaturalface.com/ natural mineral make up in Framingham, Ma they have TONS of eye shadow colors, great gel eyeliners with a cool slanted brush, pretty much anything you need and they are cheap compared to MAC and Bare Minerals.

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