6.19.2013

Why I shop cruelty-free

Hi folks.

Today, I'd like to draw your attention to something I am very passionate and care deeply about, but not many people actually seem to think about....Cruelty-free Cosmetics.  Plus, it's a good way for you to find out why I am choosing to be cruelty-free.

** No gross animal testing images below!  You're free to continue :) **

Walk into any department or drug store and people will not know if the brand is cruelty-free or not, they just smile and agree with you no matter what you say.  I understand people at the drug stores just work there and don't really know too much about the cosmetic brands, but department store attendants in the cosmetics should know their shit.  Don't tell me Lancome and Chanel are cruelty-free when I know damn well that they are not, you know?

I just want people to be more informed about this topic, it is serious and very much a problem.  I know most people don't think about what goes into the makeup they wear, what tests go into them, etc, but I really think we all should start.  There really is no need to shop brands that test when there are plenty of amazing cruelty-free brands to replace them.  Is it worth it to drop a brand that you really like because they test?  I say yes, if they are choosing to do these horrible (and I mean the worst kind of horrible) tests just to see how a certain product will effect a person is just sad especially when brands have claimed that these tests are not accurate nor are they necessary.

These are the kinds of tests that go into cosmetics:
The IDA (In Defense of Animals) states lists these facts on their website;
Product testing is commonly performed on animals to measure the levels of skin irritancy, eye tissue damage, and toxicity caused by various substances used in the manufacture of cosmetics. In the Draize test, caustic substances are placed in the eyes of conscious rabbits to evaluate damage to sensitive eye tissues. This is extremely painful for the rabbits, who often scream when the substances are applied and sometimes break their necks or backs trying to escape the restraints.  
Lethal Dosage (LD) tests are used to determine the amount of a substance that will kill a predetermined ratio of animals. For example, in the LD50 test, subjects are forced to ingest poisonous substances (through stomach tubes, vapor spray inhalers or injection) until half of them die. Common reactions to LD tests include convulsions, vomiting, paralysis and bleeding from the eyes, nose, mouth or rectum.

The IDA further states that animal testing isn't even that accurate. Results from animals are often not comparable to the effects of the product or ingredients on humans, especially regarding the lethal dose test. Alternatives to animal testing are not as popular because frankly, they're more expensive. These methods include in-vitro testing (using isolated cells in a test tube), computer simulation and others. More information regarding alternatives can be found on PETA's website.

Cruelty-free is not something I take lightly.  China requires animal testing in their cosmetics and personal-care items, and so, these brands sell there to make a quick buck because the profit in China is huge, apparently.  Most of these brands weren't cruelty-free to begin with, it's the ones that were and ditch their humane ways to sell in China is what makes me disappointed.  China is hopefully close to accepting it's first ever in-vitro (non-animal) test for cosmetic ingredients soon, which would be great for making the beauty world a much better place.

What does this mean to me?  Being an avid animal lover and vegetarian, I will no longer be reviewing, purchasing or receiving any brand that test on animals.  It wasn't hard for me before but this really sparks the fire within me again and gets me going to make sure I don't.

There is a solution, though!  Any brand on the Leaping Bunny website or the PETA website that are under the cruelty-free list are good to go!  If it does not sport the Leaping Bunny or PETA's Be Nice To Bunnies logo, it's not cruelty-free and not worth it (unless otherwise noted on the packaging).

Leaping Bunny Logo - Be Nice To Bunnies (PETA) Logo

What I ask from my readers?  To make more compassionate shopping choices so we can stop supporting brands that choose to make these horrendous decisions and to please look for the two logos above when you are shopping.  Also, please don't think I am asking you to throw everything away immediately and run to the store to replace it all, because I'm not.  I'm simply trying to help you understand where makeup comes from and what goes into it so hopefully we can all make more humane choices in our beauty.

The lists above are very good references for finding out if a brand is safe or not.  They even have phone apps for on the go which is great for when you're at the store and want to buy that bit of make up, just whip it out and you're done!

There is also an amazing book out on Animal Rights called Animal Liberation.  I know this is off topic, but available if any of you are interested. :)

Please let me know if I left anything out, I will always update if a brand goes on or off the cruelty-free list.  I would love any feedback you have!  Let's all make compassionate choices :)

"Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any way." - PETA.

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