Sunday, 25 December 2011

Choose Organic Splendor for cruelty free cosmetics

Since I started this blog, I have been lucky enough to meet some amazing people. People who believe like me that the world can be a more compassionate place to human beings and animals.

One such company is Organic Splendor. Their handmade mineral make up, bath care and skin care products are completely vegan (the company is run by a vegan) and even better, titanium dioxide free.
You can visit them here

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Living Cruelty Free is on its way!

Yay, Living Cruelty Free is now completed and is in the hands of the publisher. After auch a long journey to publication, I am looking forward to seeing it published. First as an ebook in January 2012 and then as a traditional book later on in the year.

One thing I am particularly glad of is that I no longer have to research the topics in the book. Things like veal, fur, foie gras. Reading about how these things are derived from such extreme cruelty has been heartbreaking.

What has been uplifting is reading about how so many people are turning their backs on things that come from such cruelty. In the UK where I live, people who wear fur are seen as social pariahs.

Another fact that makes me happy is that people's eyes are being opened to the cruelty involved in bringing low cost fashion to our high street chains. What's more, people are saying 'not in my name' and are shunning stores that sell wares made by slave labour (often child slave labour).

Together we can all make a real difference, I genuinely believe that and that's why I wrote Living Cruelty Free.

To be human is to show compassion to our fellow human beings and to animals. Those are words we can all live by.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

The truth about Squalene

Sharks belong in the open sea, not in face cream

I received a free sample of something in the post today. Usually I'd be happy, but the first thing I noticed was the face cream was made in France. That set off alarm bells.

You see, most beauty products made in France seem to be tested on animals with L’Oreal the worst offender.

It was also an anti-aging cream, which made me a bit peeved because it suggested I needed it.

I ran my eyes down the ingredients and spotted squalene right away. Big no, no for vegetarians, vegans and anyone who loves animals. Squalene you see usually comes from shark liver oil. It can come from plant sources (all plants and animals produce squalene naturally) but unless it states its plant derived, you have to assume it comes from sharks.

Allowing for the cruel way it's obtained, who wants shark oil on their face?

I know I don’t. How about you?

Tip – Is it an antioxidant cream? Chances are it may contain squalene.

Tip – Save yourself some money and sharks some suffering and use a few drops of olive oil on your face instead. It’s a good and cheap source of squalene, but don’t use too much or you’ll look greasy.

Note – Squalene has been linked to Gulf War Syndrome as it was used in the Anthrax vaccines American servicemen and women were given.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

The Truth About Food Additives and Colorants

When you're vegetarian or vegan or have certain dietary needs because of your religion, finding colourants other food additives that are suitable for you can be a nightmare. So, I was delighted to come across this comprehensive list online.

Not only does it say which E numbers are of animal origin, it also says whether they have been known to cause allergic reactions and whether the additive may have been likely to come from genetically engineered organisms.

Sweets and desserts often contain E numbers

For instance, E110 is also known as Sunset Yellow and has been linked to hyperactivity. It is suitable for vegetarians though.

Cochineal or E120 is the biggie to watch out for if you don't want crushed little insects in your food. It's also one of the worst offenders when it comes to allergic reactions.

Ponceau 4R is a red dye that may make people who have asthma worse. It's listed as a carcinogen (linked to cancer) and is banned in the USA by the FDA (the Food and Drug Administration). It's also been linked to hyperactivity in children.

FACT - In Scotland, Barrs who make fizzy drink Irn Bru, have announced plans to faze out Sunset Yellow and Ponceau 4R which are used as colorants in the drink. Read their statement.

Great news for UK consumers as Superdrug's own brand gets BUAV approval

I received this email today from Superdrug after I enquired about their own brand cosmetics.

Dear Miss Thomson,

Thank you for your e-mail.

I can confirm that all Superdrug Own Brand toiletries, beauty products
and household products are BUAV approved and therefore have not been
tested on animals.

Thank you for contacting Superdrug.

Kind Regards
Superdrug Customer Relations

Why is this such a big deal?
1- Superdrug stores are everywhere. They're the second biggest health and beauty retailer in the UK behind Boots. Them going cruelty free with their own brand products means millions of people now have access to cosmetics, toiletries and household products that are 100 per cenrt cruelty free.

2- Because when other chain stores say their cosmetics are not tested on animals they may not be cruelty free.

For instance -
- the ingredients may be tested on animals by them or their suppliers
- they may benefit from new ingredients that are tested on animals

If you want to ensure products are truly cruelty free, look for the leaping bunny logo.

Note - products aren't vegetarian unless it says so on the label. Vegans watch out as some products like their own brand conditioner may contain milk and other animal derived products like honey and beeswax.