For anyone who wants to be kinder to animals and each other and live a more compassionate life.
This is the companion blog for Living Cruelty Free: Live a Compassionate Life. The book is out now in paperback and Kindle. The laws covered in the book apply to the UK, USA, Canada and Australia, but are also relevant worldwide.
1. Look out for the leaping
bunny on products that guarantees a product is verified as cruelty free.
Companies may say they don't test on animals, but sometimes their claims are
misleading. Copies that carry the leaping bunny logo (accept no imitations and
believe me, there are plenty) need to prove their CF credentials. Go to http://www.gocrueltyfree.org/shopper to find cruelty free companies. You can select by country.
Go bananas for Fair Trade
2. If you're buying bananas,
chocolate or coffee, make sure it's Fairtrade (also Fair Trade). By buying Fairtrade,
you are making a real difference to real people's lives. They are paid a fair
wage for their work and farmers get a fair price for their goods.
The true face of leather
3. Ditch the leather because
it's NEVER cruelty free: it's a by-product of animal slaughter, of the meat
industry. Get synthetic belts, handbags and shoes instead.
4. Encourage anyone
interested in getting a pet to adopt and not buy. There are so many animals in
need of good homes. There's no reason for anyone to buy a pet. When people buy
a pet they might as well be locking the cage on an unwanted pet at an animal
5. Make a veggie meal for
everyone. Let your family/partner/housemates taste how good a cruelty free meal
can be. Remember if it's really cruelty free, ditch the milk and butter. It's
not that good for you anyway.
Since I wrote Living Cruelty Free I get asked all the time whether a certain company's products are tested on animals, so I thought it was time I wrote a bit about how to tell whether a make-up brand do test their products or ingredients on animals, either by doing it themselves or getting another company to do it on their behalf. Of course, you can go to gocrueltyfree to check out if a company's listed or get the app for your phone (it's a free download from the Apple store for anyone lucky enough to have an iPad or iPhone) but sometimes you don't have time or a company that is cruelty free won't be accredited, because not all CF brands are.
Stars like Ricky Gervais and Spice Girl Mel C have made their opinions clear NO TO ANIMAL TESTING.
Here's a quick lowdown -
1. If the brand's advertised on TV, it probably is tested on animals. This includes brands like Maybelline, L'Oreal and Max Factor.
2. If celebrities endorse it, it probably is tested on animals. Animal testing companies use beauty to hide the ugliness behind their products. Celebrities like Angelina Jolie may boast about their ethics, but show them the money and those ethics evaporate.
3. If a company boasts about 'a new formulation' or says things like 'amazing new' or this is the 'first product to contain a revolutionary ingredient' it probably is tested on animals.
4. They'll use a lot of fancy, scientific jargon that sounds impressive when they advertise. Talking about things like 'liptides,' 'skin elasticity,' 'non-comedogenic'and 'positive ergons.' Okay, I made the last one up, but then I supsect the cosmetics companies do too. They think, 'what can be bamboozle them with next to make them think this product is a must buy.'
5. They'll make wild boasts about their products that seem too good to be true. Things like 'this will reduce wrinkles by 50 percent' and 'reduces the appearances of fine lines.' First off, how can they back this up - by animal testing, that's what. And, secondly, claims that sound too good to be true usually are.
6.If it's made in China, it probably is tested on animals. Non-animal testing companies have been discovering that the Chinese factories where their products are made have been then testing their products so they can sell them under their own brands in China.More commonly though, previously cruelty free companies are abandoning their ethics to sell in China.
Remember - the only country that makes the animal testing of cosmetics compulsory is China, but the good news is they're working on their first ever animal free test. Companies who say they need to test their products are -
B. Being greedy and selling their products in China where they are required by law to test products on animals.
Tip - Being cruelty free helps sell a product, so if brands are they will boast about it.