Cruelty-Free Beauty: An Introduction

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Cruelty-Free Beauty: An Introduction


It is an old and tired topic, yet one that we can’t seem to truly shake: cosmetic testing on animals. As fashion- and beauty-inclined college students, what can we do?

We can stop ignoring this problem and make our thoughts heard.

But how? We’re busy and, well, tired. I want to send strongly worded letters and petitions to an extravagant list of cosmetic companies, but Math 104 is currently beating me to a pulp and I have four other neglected classes to show for it—where’s the time? I don’t exactly have a few extra hours of sleep to spare … Typical Penn student, right?

But I’m tired of the excuses and reasoning I use to justify my actions.

I’m putting my foot down. At the very least, I can stop supporting animal testing as a consumer. I have put together a feasible, step-wise plan to going cruelty free for the college student, even the most product-obsessed of us (like, uh, me).

1. Read Up

That’s right, but don’t get scared way! There’s a wealth of knowledge in the form of enjoyable, chic, cruelty free beauty blogs across the web. Written by the genuinely caring and meticulous, these blogs are very much “beauty-guru-meets-animal-activist.” They have done extensive research (including contacting companies when unsatisfied with the amount of information available online alone) to compile lists of cruelty-free products and where to get them.

Here are my favorites thus far:

Cruelty Free Kitty

Cruelty Free Kitty

Vegan Beauty Review

Vegan Beauty Review


2. Phase Out the Old

I’ll be honest—I do not have the budget to purge all of my products at once. I think the most feasible way to make a transition is in the replacement of products when they run out naturally. Take inventory: know what is running out, and make a list to compare to the information on the blogs above. Plan the new product(s) you will be purchasing to replace the old (cruel) ones. (Or make your own!)

3. Advocate

Disappointed to find that your favorite companies didn’t make the cruelty-free list? Tell them! Write a letter/email to tell them why you, a loyal customer, felt the need to take your business elsewhere.

Let your friends know, and spread the word! Tag that killer selfie with a few of the cruelty free products you’re wearing, and don’t forget #crueltyfree.

Stay tuned for more on cruelty free beauty— tips & products!

 —Dara Hofman

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1 Comment

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