Choosing Beauty Without Cruelty: The 6 Month Update

Choosing Beauty Without Cruelty: The Six Month Update

If you have been following my blog since the beginning of the year, you might remember my post about finally choosing to go 100% cruelty-free when it came to buying makeup (if you haven’t read it yet, click here). This wasn’t a very big decision for me. In fact, prior to that I thought that I was already only using cruelty-free makeup (because I didn’t read the fine print). I’m not going to go on about ingredients and China and laws and suppliers, but those are important things to be aware of when making a decision like the one that I made six months ago.

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that there are a large number of brands that are cruelty-free, including a few giants (like Too Faced, Kylie Cosmetics, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Stila, Charlotte Tilbury, Smashbox and Urban Decay). I really thought that my options would be limited, but it has been quite the opposite. To me, hunting for new cruelty-free brands has been a lot of fun, but there are always long lists available online for people who don’t enjoy that. Whenever I shop at Dis-Chem, I always browse through the Essence products, Catrice, LA Girl, Physicians Formula and LOV cosmetics. All of those brands are cruelty-free. At Clicks, I tend to drift towards the Wet ‘n Wild products, Real Techniques and NYX. Unfortunately Stuttafords has closed down, but they stocked products from theBalm, who are also cruelty-free. You can find Smashbox products and Stila products at Woolworths, and my sources tell me that Woolworths’ own beauty brand is cruelty-free too. 

I have now expanded to both skincare and hair care. This was slightly more difficult at first, but after a little bit of research I now have a list of cruelty-free brands that I can turn to at any time. The Body Shop, LUSH, Hey Gorgeous and African Extracts have been my go-to brands when it comes to caring for my skin. I am currently using The Body Shop’s Seaweed range (review here) for combination/oily skin, but prior to that I was using African Extracts Rooibos’ budget-friendly Purifying range (review here). Oh So Heavenly also shocked me with their new Hair Scentsations products. I am particularly fond of their Repair ‘n Care range (review here). 

One of the best parts about living this lifestyle is hearing about a brand pulling out of China or going cruelty-free. A worthy brand to mention is Stila, who made the change in February 2017. It feels like a victory for our movement- one step closer to changing the system! On the other hand, it breaks my heart to hear about brands that lose their cruelty-free status. NARS is an example of this, and I will never support them. 

I have found that I get “the look” from people whenever I mention the words “cruelty free“- in shops, at beauty expos and even in conversations with other people. Is it the guilt? I don’t know. I don’t run around telling people that they are wrong or force my beliefs onto them, but eyes roll whenever the topic is brought up. It must be such a burden being reminded of all of the blood on one’s hands (kidding…). I try really hard not to judge, but I am angry. I am angry with the companies who choose money over ethics, I am angry with the Chinese law that requires cosmetics to be tested on animals, and I am angry with the women and men who refuse to take their blinders off and continue to support these brands. It is wrong, but I can’t help it and I am not going to lie about how I feel on my own blog. People cry over the mistreatment of animals, a mixture of tears and Maybelline Lash Sensational running down their face, only to continue supporting the very people who cause this suffering. Why? Is that really worth it?

I read something on PETA’s website, it said: 

If you call it “medical research” you can get away with murder.

Although I cannot say I have the clearest conscience in the world, and I am no superhero, I can say that I have not chosen vanity over innocent lives. Yes, vanity. It sounds extremely silly, doesn’t it? I am not even close to living the life I want to live (one that will not cause any animals suffering) and I still make mistakes, but I have taken the first few steps. I challenge you to do the same.

You’re probably wondering if, after six whole months, I think that this whole thing is worth it? Is it worth not having  Bobbi Brown brows, YSL lips or Essie nails? Well, yes.

Hell yes.

For more information about cruelty-free beauty and my go-to list of cruelty-free brands, visit Cruelty-Free Kitty.



  1. June 30, 2017 / 9:25 PM

    Yes, absolutely.
    I am vegetarian and have been sourcing Beauty Without Cruelty products since I was at school.
    Recently started using Woolies house brand, and Oh So Heavenly (after years of Body Shop)

    • June 30, 2017 / 9:35 PM

      That’s wonderful! I hope that more people follow your footsteps in the future. x

      • July 1, 2017 / 4:37 PM

        That issue around The Body Shop made me sad. Anita Roddick founded the company to be cruelty-free and fair trade. Now I am uneasy about supporting them.

        • July 1, 2017 / 11:19 PM

          L’Oreal really did mess up The Body Shop, from what I have read. However, they have now sold TBS to a Brasilian company (Natura Cosmeticos) who are apparently cruelty-free. I haven’t looked into that though. I hope that there will be a positive outcome from this.

  2. June 30, 2017 / 11:37 PM

    Good choice also vegetarian on this journey. Nyx and The Body shop is owned by loreal who tests on animals so I am not sure if you still want to support them

    • July 1, 2017 / 10:49 AM

      That’s amazing, good for you! I love hearing about people who choose to help animals in some way, whether it is by going vegetarian, vegan or just cruelty-free. I am aware of the fact that some of the cruelty-free brands that I support have parent companies who aren’t cruelty-free, but I have personally chosen to look past that. Although The Body Shop is going to have a new parent company soon- curious about that! x

  3. July 1, 2017 / 10:54 AM

    LOVE this post! I have always been torn as there is such a fine line as a beauty blogger who wants to really get in there and explore when it comes to make-up. Also, Dhanusha has a good point in her comment on this post. SO MANY BRANDS are cruelty free but are owned by cosmetic houses who test on animals so again the line is soooo very thin. It is really up to each individual to decide just how far they want to go with it. At the end of the day L’Oreal and Estee Lauder own 90% of world wide make-up brands and the majority of their brands still sell in China.
    I decided for myself that I would no longer purchase make-up from brands who test on animals but if I am sent products I will still consider it for review. I know this is such a testy decision and will anger some people but it is what works for me and my conscience.

    All in all I am excited to read about your decision going forward 🙂

    • July 1, 2017 / 11:56 AM

      Super proud of you for making the decision to go cruelty-free, it is a BIG step that I 100% support. You don’t have to dive in head first- take baby steps (that’s what I’m doing) and do some research in your own time.
      You’re right- this situation with the parent companies is so far from black and white! I have read many posts about others’ decisions with regards to that, and every single person on both sides of the argument has a valid point. It’s definitely a personal choice, although a tricky one. Here in SA, we don’t have as big a variety as, for example, the USA or UK. We do what we can with what we have.

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