Why Cruelty-Free? Why Non-Toxic?

As you all know, a few months ago I decided that I could no longer justify purchasing non-cruelty-free products. Since then, I’m using up & giving away (while still reviewing because why the heck not) products that I’ve purchased prior to then. Over the past few days, I decided to take it a step further & make my life as non-toxic as possible. Not just beauty products, but every product or item I come in contact with. Of course, that may not always be possible. My priority will always be cruelty-free. However, it’s all about doing the best you can with what you have, so today, I wanted to share why you should go cruelty-free and natural (where you can) too!

Why Cruelty-Free?

Did you know that in the United states, animal testing for cosmetics and household products is not required? Yet, so many companies continue to drip nasty chemicals into animals eyes & burn their delicate skin by pouring chemicals onto them! Think it’s just mice & guinea pigs they test on? Wrong! Cats, dogs, & primates are all game when it comes to animal testing. Regardless of who is being tested on, no animal, big or small, cute or not, deserves to suffer for us to look good. True beauty comes from compassion, not makeup!

So if animal testing is not required in the USA, why do companies continue to test on them? Well, as much as we would like to think these companies are evil spawns of the devil, they aren’t. Companies want to prove that their products are safe for us to use. In order to do this, they test their ingredients and products on animals. There are non-animal testing procedures available, however, some companies refuse to see how accurate they are. Some companies, believe it or not, are not even aware that these methods exist!

Thankfully, there are companies and brands everywhere you look, drugstore & high-end, that are 100% cruelty-free (see my links and resources page for examples). I personally only now purchase from companies who are PETA- or Leaping Bunny-certified. Remember though, that just because a brand is cruelty-free does not necessarily mean its vegan. Do your research and read the ingredients carefully. In addition, brands that are natural and organic may still test on animals, so don’t be fooled! Always make sure they are certified cruelty-free.

*Unfortunately animal testing is required for medicine – personally I've severely limited my use of conventional medication. I will definitely talk more in the future about natural alternatives!

Some companies that are cruelty-free have parent companies that are not. It is up to you whether you decide to purchase from them or not. I personally do because I want to send the message that I support the cruelty-free brands that they own.

If a company says they are cruelty-free and you aren’t sure whether or not to believe them, do this simple test: check to see if they sell in China! As of right now, China requires animal testing on all imported products (though they are slowly shifting away from this). Brands that claim a cruelty-free status yet still sell in China are being dishonest. Stick with certified cruelty-free. Countries all around the world have banned animal testing including India, Israel, and the UK. The US and China better catch up!

Why natural

Recently, I've decided to go natural – not just my beauty products, but clothing, food, and more!

Unfortunately, our society today runs on chemicals. There are even chemicals in our drinking water! These aren’t benign chemicals I'm talking about either. I mean hazardous waste by-products (fluoride) & other carcinogens. These are present in our beauty products, our clothes & accessories, even our food! I decided enough was enough.

Some of the most common chemicals that people now are becoming more cautious of are BPA (present in plastic), sulfates (cleaning agents present in dish soap, shampoo, face cleansers, & body wash), phthalates (present in most beauty products), & parabens (potentially cancer-causing preservatives present in beauty products). Companies know this so they are removing them from their products & marketing them. Some nail polish brands are removing their most toxic chemicals, such as formaldehyde (used to preserve dead bodies). They market themselves as 3-, 5-, or 7-free, meaning free of the 3, 5, or 7 most toxic chemicals.

While this is great and progressive, there are still chemicals present in our products that are not talked about & we don’t know their possible consequences. For this reason, I've decided to eliminate any ingredients whose name I cannot pronounce or identify from my beauty routine, household products, and my food. I'm slowly eliminating plastic, hoping to be mainly plastic-free when we move! I'm going to purchase strictly secondhand where I can and where I can't, use only fair-trade, organic materials.

Of course, I’ve kept it brief, but I encourage you to check out the Environmental Working Group to check the safety rating on your products. I highly encourage you to educate yourselves on the risks and possible side effects of the products you are using. A simple Google search should provide you with endless resources. I also recommend you check out Eco-Vegan Gal, whom I have deemed the authority on all things natural, organic, non-toxic and vegan!

You vote with your dollar! Make sure you pay for compassionate products and services to let that company know that those are in demand!

All pictures found on Google Images.

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