In a kickoff segment, we discussed three types of eco-friendly beauty products:organic, natural, and vegan.
In this article, we go into more detail about vegan cosmetics and suggest vegan brands and products for the curious or full-on vegan lifestyle.
Photo by Shandi-lee, courtesy of Flickr.com
To get started, here’s the skinny on “vegan”: Vegan beauty products are derived purely from plants and inorganic substances (like minerals). This means they contain zero ingredients made from animals (e.g., rabbit hair, boar hair) or animal byproducts (e.g., milk protein, beeswax). A vegan product will therefore often advertise itself as “cruelty-free,” which means the product was not tested on animals. Cruelty-free products, however, are not always vegan, so be sure to check the ingredient list if you have any doubt.
Vegan products we love include Urban Decay’s Vegan Palette (shown above) and Urban Decay’s 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencilsthat come in metallic, tropical, and neutral colorways, like Deviant, Crash, Bourbon, 1999, Yeyo, and Electric. These award-winning waterproof pencils are creamy, soft, and blendable for up to 30-seconds, and thereafter won’t budge for a long-lasting finish. Their waterproof vegan formula contains 50% moisturizers, and includes jojoba oil, vitamin E, and cottonseed oil. Looks great with their vegan eye shadows, too.
Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics are also all 100% vegan and cruelty-free, including their OCC Skin Primer and OCC Lip Tars. The OCC Skin Primer is lightweight and moisturizing to perfectly prep your face for applying airbrush makeup. With cornflower extract to absorb excess moisture, the Primer works great as both a moisturizer and absorbent for oily complexions. The OCC Lip Tar wears as long as a lipstick and goes on easy like a gloss. It is so featherweight that it feels like you have a nude lip, and is packed with pigment for a super saturated, colorful look. So much, in fact, that you only need to use a teeny tiny amount each time you apply. Its natural ingredient list—which includes hemp oil, peppermint oil, and vitamin E—is free of parabens and other toxic preservatives. Read more and join the discussion on OCC’s Lip Tar here and here.
Another radiant product that is both vegan and cruelty-free is Naked Cosmetics’ Color Collection. You can read more about this product here. Tools can also be vegan, such as the Bronzer Brush made by Eco Tools that features taklon bristles. Instead of the rabbit hair traditionally used in makeup brushes, taklon bristles are manmade from synthetic materials and therefore cause no harm to rabbits and other loveable animals.
“Going vegan” is no longer doubletalk for a one-way ticket to fuglyville. Because of their lack of allergens (mostly commonly, the milk protein “casein”) and lessened environmental impact, vegan products can actually improve your complexion and reduce your carbon footprint. Now that’s beautiful! Today, vegan cosmetics are a viable beauty option thanks to the profusion of product information and reviews on sites (such as GreenOptions.com), advances in beauty research and science, and the work of animal rights organizations. To learn more, visit the online database maintained by the animal rights group PETA to find beauty and household products that are cruelty-free and vegan (denoted with a “V”).