Tomorrow is World Vegan Day and also the first day of World Vegan Month (which runs thought November), an annual event which celebrates all things which a plant (and seed/nut)-based diet has to offer, as well as raising awareness of veganism and encouraging non-vegans to give it a whirl – even if only one month of the year!
The term vegan (the first and last letters few in Vegetarian) was coined way back in 1944 by Donald Watson (1910-2005) when he founded The Vegan Society however veganism has been around for much, much longer. As far back as 500BC plant based diets have been a way of life for some; Pythagorus, the Greek Philosopher and Mathematician and Siddhārtha Gautama (Buddha) were just two individuals committed to what is now termed as Veganism.
I am not vegan – I was for a brief period around twenty years ago but it wasn’t for me. I am a big believer in listening to your body and it will to a certain extent tell you what it needs and mine really wan’t happy with veganism. Despite no longer having a vegan diet, I do understand the desire to use products which are produced without the use or inclusion of animals or their by-products.
Ever since I discovered the existence (and extent) of animal-testing when I was about fourteen years old, I have only ever chosen cruelty-free products in my beauty kit and over time this has evolved to become what it is today – predominantly natural and organic. Since the beginning of my career I have actively avoided brands which use animals in product testing or even who’s parent companies test and have boycotted some big name brands who are usually staples of a pro kit. This is a major factor for me when looking for products.
From an ingredient perspective however it is all very well going green but being organic or natural doesn’t necessarily mean that a product is vegan – or vice versa! Yes, products are cruelty free, however many eco brands still contain ingredients such as beeswax or the highly contentious carmine which make them unsuitable for Vegans.
Throughout November I will be celebrating the best of vegan beauty and focusing my attentions on vegan friendly brands and products. I will be trying vegan make-up and skincare I have previously never used and writing solely about vegan friendly products.
What are your feelings on ingredients such as carmine and beeswax in beauty products?