There are a couple of phases one goes through when they develop a makeup addiction. One of these phases is that you frantically start searching for all the makeup reviews, tutorials and products you just have to have.
It’s pretty much inevitable for the makeup nut to not come across the professional brands like MAC, NARS, Shisheido, Urban Decay, Sephora etc etc. It was honestly beyond my wildest dreams and far out of the reach of my pitiful bankaccount. I mean honestly: make up is a priority in life but paying 68 euros for that perfect highlighter is criminal in my book.
So what was left to do but to start a frenzied search for cheap and decent alternatives. Which wasn’t all that hard to be honest. The internet is packed with websites that offer dupes of nearly every cosmetic brand you can imagine. Obviously I was sorely tempted to go along and order a giant amount of dupes and fakes. And yet: I didn’t.
Before I do anything, ever; I research and ask myself a lot of questions to which I try to find suitable answers as fast as possible. One of the questions I immediately asked myself after coming across this poor man’s makup paradise was: to what cost am I prepared to do this?
Where are the products made?
Is there abuse involved of either man or animal?
Who makes the big bucks here?
Can I be sure of the quality?
It was obvious that I would have to do a lot more research in order to make a decision here.
In the end, I came to the conclusion that I was gonna stay as true to myself as I could. Me is a girl with daily urges of mass murder against all of humanity, but drops everything she’s doing to pet that cute puppy or play with the cat on the corner.
This eventually led me to the world of cruelty-free cosmetics.
And boy is it a small world.
The choice to go for a completely cruelty-free cosmetic bag (well… many bags by now) mainly stems from the belief that we have already decimated our animal kingdom sufficiently enough to not want to harm any more animals if I can possibly help it.
In that same respect I only eat fish caught with the “MSC” label, try to buy organic eggs (even though I know that the situations those chickens live in aren’t ideal either) and have actually given up meat completely.
Back to the make-up though!
The research you can do on this is truly endless, as is the degree in which you want to go ahead and buy cruelty-free. I’ve read about girls who went on from buying cruelty-free to actually making their own cosmetics. Crazy right? Yeah I don’t have time to do that either.
I do have time however to sit on the couch with my tablet and browse to get the information I want.
If you are like me and you’re considering to go cruelty-free -and you totally should do like me here-, here’s a couple of things I’ll tell you right of the bat so you don’t get too disillusioned:
– There aren’t many easy-to-buy, CF brands out there if you want to do it for real. Sorry ladies but a lot of giant cosmetic companies claim to “not test their finished product on animals”. If you start reading the fine print though, you’ll come to find that the components of which their makeup is made is a totally different matter.
– If the company you dig is selling in China: just go ahead and scratch them off your list. Chinese companies are obliged by law to test on animals. Which means that your precious blush powder is smeared on fluffy little rabbits, just to make sure your skin won’t break out.
– There are some pretty gruesome videos and documentaries on this subject available online and I would definitely encourage you to watch at least one of them. It’s not something anybody is prepared to just sit through but by the end of it you’ll be 100% more motivated to make a concious decision.
– The temptation of buying non-cruelty-free is gonna be there always. Make-up nuts all over the world drule over MAC lipsticks and Urban Decay eye-shadow pallettes, but there are always alternatives that don’t involve the torturing of innocent creatures.
– Never, EVER buy cosmetics from websites like ‘AlieExpress’, ‘LightInTheBox’, ‘Dresslink’, and so on. These are 99% chinese knock offs and besides being not-animal-friendly, you can never know what the hell is in these. There is slim to no quality control in these production factories and labs.
– Sadly, the PETA website is not always up to date on this, so make sure you check more than just their list. Which is pretty fucking extensive anyhow.
Another important thing to keep in mind is this: when you start getting into the subject, you’ll be shocked with how much of the products that we use daily are at some point tested on animals. The choice is yours to either scrap everything out of your life and then the search for comfortable and quality alternatives will be extensive and hard, but not impossible.
Or you can be like me and cut things you feel most uncomfortable by.
Don’t feel too bad about it if you decide to just go on as you do. It’s not your fault that the government keeps offering us these options and you shouldn’t pay for it by getting hate.
I’ll end the subject with on the one side a sum-up of my own favorite cruelty-free brand and a couple of useful and interesting links to information on the subject.
Happy hunting bunnies!
My favorite cruelty-free brands:
– ELF (Eyes, Lips, Face): only available online in Belgium and I think even Europe. Cheap brand that puts focus on production and research instead of advertising. Not every product they offer is of equal quality but it’s definitely worth looking into!
– NYX: Again only available online in Belgium. Pricier than ELF but the quality speaks for itself! Beautiful lipcolours that last on your lips for a long time. It should be noted that NYX in itself is cruelty-free, but their parent company is not.
– Sleek: Sleek is a UK based cosmetics company that offers a complete range of CF, semi-professional make-up. Mainly available online, but as of recent the drugstore chain ‘Di’ has started offering the most popular products in their shops too. The availability however is scarse and so I would recomment ordering online in any case.
– The Balm. Retro lovers will fall in love with this brand! Available at Di and online, they offer a line of retro-inspired makeup. The packaging is always super cute and the products themselves are of good quality. Price range can be considered in the “drugstore makeup” department, e.g. not as cheap as ELF but definitely not as expensive as MAC (who do test on animals!).
– MakeUp Revolution: another UK based company that offers beautiful products ate such affordable prices! available online and sometimes “Di” buys their overstock.
– Zoeva. Available online. This brand is famous for their brushes! They are soft and wonderful and of very good quality.
– Essence and Catrice: both of these low-end brand are available in “Kruidvat” stores all over the country. They’re super budget-friendly but somehow manage to maintain their quality. Not all of their products are completely up my ally and I would definitely recommend testing their products before buying them, but I swear by their eyeliners, beautiful eyeshadow palettes and even their foundation.