My sister is a vegetarian and sometimes a vegan. So if we eat together I take that into account. And because of that I discovered some tasty vegetarian/ vegan dishes!
She recently told me that the vegan lifestyle was more difficult to maintain than the vegetarian. She found out that a lot of things are made from animal products, including cosmetics. Yet she tried to pay attention to whether products have a so-called vegan label.
I honestly don’t pay attention to that label. It must happen to be on my skin care product.
Last week my sister and I had dinner at a vegan restaurant and I ate pretty good spaghetti there. When we talked about vegan beauty, I realized how little I know about it. So after a good conversation with my sister about vegan beauty and some online research, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about it!
What is vegan beauty?
Vegan beauty is vegan cosmetics that contain no animal ingredients or animal by-products. The products are also not tested on animals.
But note, this doesn’t have to be the case the other way around. A product that hasn’t been tested on animals isn’t necessarily vegan.
Skin care ingredients that aren’t vegan
When I look at my own skin care products, I have quite a few that contain animal ingredients. My KAHI Wrinkle Multi Balm contains salmon complex and my lip balm contains beeswax.
During my vegan beauty research I also found out that some ingredients had an animal origin, while I didn’t know this!
Animal ingredients in skin care products
- Carmine comes from scale
- Collagen comes from cattles, pigs and fish collagen
- Elastin comes from cows
- Glycerin sometimes comes from animal fat
- Hyaluronic acid comes from a rooster’s comb
- Lanolin comes from sheep wool
- Keratin comes from the hairs and horns of animals
- Snail mucin
- Squalene comes from sharks
Are there alternatives?
Yes they are! More and more plant-based options are coming onto the market:
- Beeswax can be substituted for soy wax.
- Collagen can be substituted for almond oil and plant peptides.
- Coconut oil and shea butter are good alternatives for lanolin.
- And olives, amaranth and sugarcane are used to obtain squalene.
The popular ingredient hyaluronic acid is also increasingly being obtained animal-friendly by sourcing it from microbial fermentation in the lab. In addition to being much more animal-friendly, it’s also much cheaper and more efficient!
Luckily you don’t have to find out for yourself whether a product is vegan. On these vegan labels you can trust that your cosmetics are really vegan:
- Vegan Action
- Vegan Society
- The Vegetarian Society