If you’re new to This Northern Gal, you may not know that I only buy cruelty free beauty products. It wasn’t always that way. In fact, I made the change quite late on, but after thinking about it for a while. I explained the decision in this post, if you’d like to find out a little bit more about my motivations. If you don’t fancy reading an entire post, here’s a snippet of it which explained what gave me the final push:
“From time to time, my skin gets overwhelmingly sensitive. Something – I never really know what – makes it red and uncomfortable and I have little choice but to strip back my makeup and skincare, hoping that it will calm down soon.
It was during one of these little episodes that I realized that all the discomfort that I was feeling was 100x worse for the poor creatures who had to test it first. Not only did they have to deal with this every single day, but they would have to test the stuff that wasn’t ready for use. If approved products hurt, what must the rest be like?”
It has now been nearly 18 months since I made that decision and I haven’t looked back since. Sometimes, I still feel like I’m blundering through, especially when it comes to companies that are super-cagey about their cruelty free status. For the most part, however, I feel really comfortable and confident with my cruelty free products. There’s nothing that I miss, no alternative that I haven’t found. Looking for the little bunny symbol has become second nature and I honestly can’t see myself going back. Animal testing for something as frivolous as blusher or shampoo just doesn’t make sense to me.
A big part of this is the fact that I’ve found some go-to places to shop or research. I thought I might share a couple of these with you, in case you’re considering making the change too. This isn’t intend as a sales pitch or lecture on going cruelty free but I hope it can be of help to those of you who are considering making the switch. I should also point out that my priority is making sure the brand is cruelty free and that I’m using my money to show the bigger companies that I’m team cruelty free. This is different for other people and some choose to also boycott brands who are owned by a parent company who are not cruelty free. Again, this is personal choice and not for everyone but it is worth bearing in mind.
If you’re looking for cruelty free brands, I started a mini-series called ‘Cruelty Free in Focus’ where I share some of my favourite cruelty free brands. So far, I’ve made posts on Superdrug and MUA and have a few more in the pipeline. I love Barry M (especially for nail varnishes), Liz Earle (for face products) and Urban Decay. Superdrug, Sainsburys and Tesco are great for the everyday bits as their own ranges are cruelty free. Having cruelty free products so readily available makes the whole thing so much easier, and means I can extend my decision to things like washing up liquid and soap!
When it comes to blogging babes chatting all things cruelty free, my faves are Honeypop Kisses and Mo’adore. Not only are their blogs cracking, but I love finding new cruelty free brands from their posts. For more general resources, Mo’adore has a master list of cruelty free and vegan brands, which you can find here. Cruelty Free Kitty also has a great selection of resources if you need to check something out – you can read that here.
My personal advice? Do your research and find a couple of go to brands while you’re navigating the minefield of what is and isn’t cruelty free. I also found it really useful to just go cold turkey and throw everything in my collection that wasn’t cruelty free out. Anything that was new and in good condition was given to friends but I didn’t think phasing it out would work for me.
So, 18 months later, I still stand by my decision to go cruelty free and think I’ll be staying in this camp for a canny while yet!