Label Fables Two: What to Look for in Vegan, Vegetarian and Cruelty-Free Cosmetics

Spot the fable on the label when it comes to vegetarian, vegan and cruelty-free cosmetics with simple tips, such as checking to see if they are on certification bodies’ approved lists online, what to look for in the ingredients and more. After all, one of our missions is to ‘let your outer beauty reflect the one within’. And what better way to do that than by helping you make sure your pretty buy reflects your principles and lifestyle.

Look for Vegetarian and Vegan Cosmetics on Certification Bodies’ Brand Lists
Especially when shopping online and you can’t see the certification logos, you can check for certified/registered vegetarian cosmetics on the Vegetarian Society’s brand list and for approved vegan cosmetics on The Vegan Society’s registered brand list. Both check brands to make sure they are beautifully animal free.

Look for Approved Cruelty-Free Cosmetics on Certification Bodies’ Brand Lists
To ensure that your guilt-free gorgeous product is truly guilt free (i.e. without animal testing) when shopping online, check if it’s on the Cruelty Free International’s or PETA’s approved brand list.
Beauty Bonus:
Cruelty Free International even goes as fabulously far as to give you discount codes on certified cruelty-free cosmetics. But remember, even though vegetarian and vegan cosmetics approved by the Vegetarian and Vegan Society are cruelty free, not all cruelty-free cosmetics are veggie or vegan. But you can tweak your search on Cruelty Free International’s approved product search list to find a veggie or vegan one that’s fabulously free of animal testing, too.

How to Know When that Certifying Logo is a Lie
To tell if a brand has used the certification logo when it hasn’t actually been certified, here are some tips so you can spot the lie before you buy: Approved vegetarian cosmetics should never have these ingredients, such as gelatine, aspic (a dish that contains gelatine made from meat), GMOs (genetically modified organisms) and more, according to the Vegetarian Society.  For approved vegan cosmetics, look at the allergy information. If it says milk or eggs or ‘may contain’ them, it’s not vegan. And it’s not vegan if it has beeswax, shellac, lanolin and more, according to the Vegan Society. And finally, cruelty-free cosmetics should be free from carotene (a pigment found in animal tissues used to colour cosmetics), egg protein, animal fats and more, according to PETA. And if you see any of the above, make sure to report it to the appropriate certification body.

And if you’re wondering about your organic beauty, be sure to read our article on how to find out if your organic beauty products really are organic.

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Christina, editor of Evolving Beauty

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