We love our beauty products… But, we also love cuddly rabbits. Jagruti Verma tells you how to switch to cruelty-free and animal-friendly beauty products
The cruellest thing about the beauty world (apart from the demeaning advertising campaigns) is that products are usually tested on animals to find out if certain ingredients have side effects. And, while testing any product — whether it is cough syrup or a car — may be a standard safety and precautionary measure before the product hits the market, the way the lab animals are treated is far from standard. Apart from the living conditions, chemicals are tested on their skin, and sometimes, even on their delicate eyes. While such practices have been spoken about, criticised and protested against globally, it must be admitted that it may not be at the top of your priority list when you go shopping to make yourself look gorgeous. But, it’s high time you add the criteria of being animal-friendly to your check list.
One of the most active participants in this campaign is PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) and they list on their website the brands that do not test their products on animals. If you’re wondering whether or not these products are safe to use, don’t worry since there are other ways to test products (thanks to science, of course!). These include in vitro testing of donated human tissues and organs, computerised tests as well as safely micro dosing human volunteers. So, these animal-friendly brands definitely take precautions to make sure that their products are safe — they just do it without involving animals.
As we went through PETA India’s list of brands that are cruelty-free, we were glad to see our regular favourites on it, including Shahnaz Husain, Soulflower, Bath & Body Works and The Body Shop. It is a mirror to other brands, as they should resort to cruelty-free processes as well. Here are a few of our favourite products that you can use, without guilt!
In sync with their commitment to being cruelty-free, The Body Shop has a range of white musk fragrances that use synthetic musk instead of the fragrant musk that’s obtained from the glands of the male musk deer. The products available in their white musk range include perfumes, mists and body washes. If we were to pick one, we’d try the White Musk Chiffon Sheer Body Mist, a blend of musk with rose, jasmine, amber and wood scents. Pick it up from their stores across the city for Rs. 1,195.
VEGAN & VEGETARIAN
With a range primarily consisting of vegan products — they have a few vegetarian ones because certain Ayurvedic formulae use milk as an ingredient — Omved is a 100% conscious company that even ensures minimal wastage in their production process. We recommend the Ananda rose soap, which you can pick up from their store or website for Rs. 270.
Soulflower’s commitment includes not testing their products or ingredients on animals along with ensuring that their products are free of animal fat. So, now we have one more reason to like their aromatic products. Pick their Lavender Essential Oil from stores for Rs. 650.