Vegan & Organic Skincare

What Is Vegan Beauty?

5 Mins read

What exactly is vegan beauty? It may sound like a strange concept, but you’ve probably heard of it before.

Vegan beauty has been around for quite a while, but there are many myths and questions about it.

From what products are vegan to if going vegan makes you healthier and more beautiful — we’ll cover it all.

What Is Vegan Beauty?

Vegan cosmetics are made without ingredients that come from animal sources and byproducts. That includes honey, beeswax, lanolin (a.k.a. wool grease), collagen, gelatin, and carmine (crushed beetles used for red pigmentation).

Vegan products can still contain synthetic ingredients such as polybutene or methylparaben.

Vegan beauty products are often cruelty-free as well but not always.

The FDA doesn’t require cosmetics to be tested on animals before going to market, which means both vegan and non-vegan products can be cruelty-free—meaning they’re free of any animal testing throughout the production process (even if they contain lanolin or other animal byproduct ingredients).

Who Can Benefit From Vegan Makeup?

You might be asking yourself, “Who can benefit from vegan makeup?” And the answer is a lot of people!

  • People with sensitive skin are one group who can benefit from using vegan makeup.
  • Another group that can benefit from using vegan makeup is people with allergies.
  • And obviously, if you want to stay away from animal products as much as possible, then vegan makeup is for you.
  • Finally, if you’re concerned about animals being tested when it comes to cosmetics, then go ahead and make the switch to vegan beauty products.

What Are Some Tips for Wearing Vegan Makeup?

1. Make sure your skin is clean and moisturized

Make sure to thoroughly cleanse and moisturize your skin prior to applying the product.

This will prevent you from clogging your pores, which is especially important when dealing with vegan products.

2. Apply a primer before you apply your makeup

Use a primer before applying makeup—this will result in a smoother application, giving the rest of your face an evener look and feel.

3. Apply a foundation that matches your skin tone

Apply foundation (if desired) that matches your skin tone.

If you’re using a liquid foundation, dot it onto the points of your face (forehead, nose, chin), then blend using downward strokes so as not to drag any product back up into your pores.

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4. Apply concealer to hide any blemishes or dark spots

If desired, apply concealer under your eyes (blend well!) or over any blemishes/dark spots on the rest of your face before continuing with the next steps.

5. Apply a setting powder

Apply setting powder using a brush and sweep lightly across the face; this locks in moisture while also acting as another gentle layer between you and the world outside.

6. Apply a bronzer

Apply bronzer along the apples of cheeks so they appear less chapped or dull; this provides a natural-looking glow that’s subtle but effective!

7. Apply blush

Apply blush on top last—this will give off an innocent appearance without looking overdone like other makeup techniques tend to do when used incorrectly.”

What Are Some Red Flags to Look for on Product Labels When Shopping for Vegan Beauty Products?

When shopping for vegan makeup, be sure to look for “vegan” or “cruelty-free” on a product’s label.

It might seem like just another marketing gimmick or buzzword to some, but it’s actually very important to the community and movement.

The biggest red flag is animal-derived ingredients (like honey, lanolin, beeswax, carmine, etc.) in a product’s formula—these are used in many traditional beauty products.

One thing to note: Just because a brand is cruelty-free doesn’t necessarily mean its products are vegan.

Though most brands that don’t test on animals do not use animal byproducts in their formulas either, there are still some companies that make exceptions(like using beeswax as an emulsifier).

Some skin-care lines that aren’t fully vegan actually have several vegan face washes and moisturizers in their collections.

Are All Makeup Brands Jumping on the Vegan Train?

In the past few years, we’ve seen more and more brands developing vegan options.

And this isn’t just because they want to cater to the cruelty-free crowd.

Makeup brands are responding to a market that is increasingly health-conscious and aware of ingredients — a lot of people simply don’t want animal byproducts in their beauty products.

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There are even people who choose not to eat meat or dairy, but still use makeup that contains animal byproducts because they don’t realize how widespread it is in the industry.

With all that being said, it’s important to note that these brands didn’t just wake up one day and decide:

“You know what? We should start making products without beeswax.”

They did so because there was a demand for it — from consumers like you!

The cosmetics industry is on high alert as more consumers are demanding better quality products and sustainable practices.

As we continue to educate ourselves on what goes into our beauty products, we also have the power to make changes that will hopefully benefit ourselves and our planet in the long run.

Does Being Vegan Mean Using Only Natural Cosmetics?

The term “natural” can be confusing, but think of it this way: A vegan cosmetic is not necessarily a natural cosmetic.

  • Natural cosmetics are often better for the environment because they contain fewer chemicals and petroleum products.
  • They also can do wonders for your skin if you use the right ones since many of these products contain essential vitamins and minerals.
  • However, not all-natural products are vegan, as some plant-based ingredients are actually harvested from animals—think honey or glycerine.
  • Many vegan makeup brands that aren’t considered “natural” have been tested to ensure there aren’t any animal byproducts in their ingredients and have no animal testing policies.
  • While these products may not be as great for the environment (because of all those chemicals) or for your skin (because they lack the vitamins and minerals found in natural cosmetics), there are still many great options available when shopping for vegan makeup that doesn’t break the bank.

Are Synthetic Ingredients Vegan Friendly?

What about synthetic ingredients?

You might assume that since they’re created in a lab and not derived from animals, synthetic ingredients must be vegan friendly.

This isn’t always the case! For example, squalane is a common ingredient used in skincare products. It’s naturally found in shark liver oil but can also be produced synthetically.

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Many beauty brands are opting to use the synthetic version instead of the natural one because it’s more stable (meaning it won’t go bad as quickly) and doesn’t contribute to the death of sharks.

However, some companies test their products on animals before releasing them on the market, which would make this product not vegan friendly.

There are also plenty of synthetic ingredients that come from natural sources and aren’t tested on animals—those you can feel free to use!

Are Facial Oils Vegan Friendly?

Facial oils are a tricky one because although they’re plant-based and therefore vegan on its own, the process of creating some natural oils involves animal products.

In fact, it’s not uncommon for beauty brands to even claim that their facial oil production process is “cruelty-free,” which is often technically true.

For example, ingredients like beeswax or honey are regularly used in the production of these products—both of which vegans steer clear from.

So now we come back to those two terms you’ve probably run into a few times already: cruelty-free and vegan-friendly.

The former means that no animal has been harmed in the production process; it doesn’t necessarily mean any animal derivatives have been used.

Vegan-friendly means that there are no animal ingredients in the product at all, whether processed with animals or not.

So if you want to know whether your facial oil is vegan, check the label and look out for ingredients like beeswax or honey (the latter would be listed as mel).

And while you’re at it, take note of whether any other elements are derived from animals (there’s a long list of things that can be found in beauty products but aren’t vegan) before adding it to your cart.

Final Thoughts

Vegan beauty is more than a phase.

Veganism is on the rise, and it’s not going away anytime soon.

Vegan products are hitting shelves across the nation, and their popularity isn’t slowing down.

People are looking for alternatives that don’t test on animals.

They’re looking for an alternative to using animal-based products in their beauty routine, and they’ve found that alternative in vegan beauty.