By Plabita Sharma
The month of November in the vegan world usually brings in itself an increased amount of dialogue and research on the vegan lifestyle, sustainable living, and clean beauty. Before thinking any further, it’s important to understand what the vegan lifestyle is and how it goes beyond the concept of consuming a plant-based diet. Veganism is essentially a way of life that is motivated by compassionate choices and an increased awareness of one’s actions on the world. So motivated by both, a vegan individual usually carefully organizes their daily practices in a way that does little or no harm to the planet, people, and all of its inhabitants.
Beauty as an industry has been repeatedly scrutinized for its effects on consumers and the ecosystem – this may be during the manufacturing process or the effect it has on the consumer’s thought processes. Now, as the world moves towards adopting the Global Sustainability Goals, committing to a world that works with natural resources rather than against them – it is only right for every individual to be curious about make the right choices to make her beauty kit consciously organized as possible. With several brands offering new standards of vegan and sustainable beauty, many consumers are confused and doubt the authenticity of these claims. Here is a little guide that can help you make the right choices:
Vegan and cruelty-free labels: True to the traditional meaning of Vegan – any vegan beauty product means that it is completely plant-based and does not contain any ingredients of animal origin or any of their by-products like honey, beeswax, dairy products, etc. that the ingredients or the final product have not been tested on animals or harmed any animals during the production process. One way to test for authenticity is to check if these products are legally certified by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), or verified by vegan organizations like The Vegan Society and others. Cruelty-free and vegan products are also generally categorized based on their cleaner, gentler formulas, as they are mostly devoid of harsh chemicals and solvents.
Any vegan beauty product means that it is completely herbal and does not contain any ingredients of animal origin or any of their by-products like honey, beeswax, dairy, etc. | Photo by Drew Dizzy Graham on Unsplash
Ethical and natural ingredients: Equally important is investing in products that use ethically sourced and sustainably harvested ingredients. Since most vegan products tend to be derived from plants, it is of the utmost importance to ensure that although the source is nature, the impact of manufacturing is also minimal so that it there is no harm to the environment. Often times, the facial scrubs we use are the most damaging not only to the face and to marine life; thus opting for more natural ingredients rather than synthetic is quite beneficial. Some natural scrub ingredients are sugar, salt, coffee which are safe for coral reefs and much milder than synthetic scrubs.
Equally important is investing in products that use ethically sourced and sustainably harvested ingredients. | Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash
Sustainable and ecological packaging: Although the ingredients and formulation can be certified, it is also important to pay attention to the quality, material and nature of the packaging in which the product is stored. With the increase in clean beauty standards, the consumption of these products has also increased, thus giving brands the opportunity to further develop their packaging in a sustainable way and their increased quantity does not harm the environment. This could result in the use of recycled and renewable raw materials or the introduction of the concept of upcycling the product packaging for decoration or storage. For example, The Body Shop recently launched a new line of vegan hair care and body butters; which are not only made from 95% natural ingredients, but the packaging is made from recycled plastic which can be recycled further, thus continuing the recycling system. Their makeup brushes also have wooden handles instead of plastic ones, which adds to their sleek appearance and the use of environmentally friendly materials.
The Body Shop recently launched a new line of vegan hair care and body butters; which are not only made of 95% natural ingredients, but the packaging is made of recycled plastic. | Photo by Oli Dale on Unsplash
The above is a small snippet from a long list of things that can help contribute to a cleaner, more conscious lifestyle. Where demand increases, supply follows – as people start to demand ethical and responsible production and products, more and more brands have started to deliver. Familiar names like The Body Shop have been at the forefront of conversations about clean, green and sustainable beauty for decades, making it a precursor for many former vegans.
(Article originally published on IANSlife) (IANS / MBI)
Tags: Beauty, makeup, cleanliness, November, world vegan month, new standards, vegan, conscious