It’s been over a year since I threw away most of my beauty products and went through the makeup detox and it’s been quite the journey.
I just wanted to reassure every beginner that it’s totally common to accidentally buy a non-vegan product. Some beauty companies put derivatives of non-vegan products in the ingredient list to confuse the consumers so they buy it so the company could generate income.
Make sure to research the brands you’d like to purchase and make sure they use synthetic or plant-based ingredients. Remember you don’t have to buy the most expensive beauty products, there are drugstore products that are vegan and do not test on animals!
It’s also really normal for your friends and family to accidentally gift you non-vegan products. Just try your best to explain that you are avoiding specific ingredients that come from animals. I can assure you that they are going to start asking questions and maybe join you in your Vegan Beauty journey!
Be very patient with them, they are trying their best to support you and remember that this is also a learning experience for them as well.
I hope you enjoy today’s download Vegan Beauty: An Easy Guide For Beginners which is a pocket guide of ingredients to avoid if you’d like to start purchasing vegan beauty products.
Warning: If you have a really sensitive stomach DO NOT read the descriptions because they are graphic. If you’d like to download the free resource, click here or click the image below
Allatoin: Uric acid that comes from cows as well as other mammals. It’s commonly found in creams and lotions.
Alpha-Hydroxy Acids: Comes from animal muscle and tissue as well as sour milk. Often found in exfoliants and anti-wrinkle products.
Ambergris: A waxy oil that lines the whale’s stomach that can be easily found in perfumes
Amino Acids: The building blocks of protein in animals and plants. It’s often found in cosmetics, vitamins and shampoos (keep your eyes open for synthetic plant sources!)
Animal Hair: Easily found in makeup brushes. Make sure to buy synthetic fiber brushes, they’re actually better for your skin (Wet n Wild sells vegan brushes now!).
Beeswax (Cera Flava): Often found in face creams, lotions, mascara, eye creams, shadows, lip balms, nail whiteners, etc. The way they put it in beauty products is by melting the honeycomb in boiling water, straining it, and cooling it. It’s very cheap, widely used, and according to PETA, it can be harmful to the skin.
Casein (Caseinate, Sodium Caseinate): A milk protein that is often in many cosmetics and beauty masks.
Castor (Castoreum): A creamy substance that has a really strong smell; it usually comes from muskrats and beaver genitals. The good news is that it’s now typically synthetic and often seen in in perfume and incenses. Some cosmetics continue to use the animal derivative while the majority doesn’t.
Caprylic Acid (Caprylic Triglyceride, Caprylamine Oxide, Capryl Betaine): It’s a liquid fatty acid that comes from cow’s or goat’s milk that is often found in perfumes and soaps.
Carotene (Provitamin A, Beta Carotene): A pigment found in both animal tissues and plants. It’s used as a coloring in cosmetics and it’s also found in Vitamin A.
Cerebrosides: Fatty acids and sugars that are found in the covering of nerves of animal brains. Often found in moisturizers.
Chitosan: A fiber derived from crustacean shells. Often found in diet products; hair, oral, and skin products; antiperspirants; and deodorants.
Cochineal Dye (Carmine, Carminic Acid): Made from beetles that feed on cactus plants in Central and South America. Found in lipsticks and blushes.
Collagen: It’s a fibrous protein from animal tissue that is often found in lip-plumping glosses and creams that have no proven effect on your own collagen reproduction.
Estrogen (Estradiol): A hormone-based ingredient found in perfumes, restorative creams, and lotions. It comes from the urine of pregnant horses.
Fish Scales: Often sound in shimmery makeup.
Gelatin (Gel, Hide Glue, Gelatine, Isinglass, Kosher and Halal Gelatine): Boiled skin, tendons, ligaments and bones of animals. It’s often found in creamy cosmetics and nail treatments.
Guanine: Crushed fish scales that are found in mascaras, nail polishes, and lipsticks.
Glycerin (Glycerol, Glycerides, Glyceryls, Glycreth-26, Polyglycerol): A byproduct of soap manufacture made from animal fat. It’s found in cosmetics, foods, mouthwashes, gum, toothpastes, soaps, ointments, medicines, lubricants, transmission and brake fluid, and plastics.
Keratin: A protein that comes from ground-up horns, hooves, feathers, quills, and hairs of different animals. It’s often found in hair rinses, shampoos, and permanent wave solutions.
Lanolin (Aliphatic Alcohols, Cholesterin, Isopropyl Lanolate, Laneth, Lanogene, Lanolin Alcohols, Lanosterols, Sterols, Triterpene Alcohols): the excretion from wool-bearing mammals that is often found in lipsticks and makeup removers.
Lecithin (Choline Bitartrate): A waxy substance that’s in the nervous tissue of living organism that is frequently obtained for commercial purposes from eggs and soybeans. It also comes from blood, milk, and corn. It can be found in eye creams, lipsticks, liquid powders, hand creams, lotions, soaps, shampoos, and other cosmetics. Look for soy lecithin and lecithin synthetics on your labels!
Linoleic Acid: an essential fatty acid that is used for skin restoratives, skin-soothing agent, and antioxidants. It’s vegan option comes from corn and sunflower oils because it has Omega-6 fatty acids.
Musk: Dried secretion obtained in a horrible way from musk deer, beavers, muskrat, civet cat, and otter genitals. Often found in perfumes and even food flavorings. Opt for Labdanum oil which comes from different rockrose shrubs and plants that have a musky scent.
Myristic Acid: An organic acid that’s commonly derived from nut oils but can occasionally be of animal origin that used in shampoos, creams, and makeup.
Oleic Acid: Usually comes from inedible tallow or rendered beef fat but there is a plant alternative. It’s often found in food, softsoap, bar soap, permanent wave solutions, creams, nail polishes, lipsticks, and many other skin preparations.
Palmitic Acid: a fatty acid that’s commonly derived from Palm Oil but there are some that are made from animals. Found in shampoos, shaving soaps, and creams.
Panthenol (Dexpanthenol, Vitamin B-Complex Factor, Provitamin B-5): It can come from animal or plant sources as well as synthetics. Often found in shampoos, supplements, food, emollients, etc.
Placenta (Placenta Polypeptides, Protein, Afterbirth): Contains wasted matter that was eliminated by the fetus. Unfortunately, it comes from the uterus of slaughtered animals and is used for skin creams, shampoos, masks, etc.
Polypeptides: It comes from animal protein and it’s usually found in cosmetics that focus on anti-aging and anti-wrinkles.
Polysorbates: This is a derivative of fatty acids that can easily be found in food as well as face cleansers and creams.
Pristane: It comes from the liver oil of sharks as well as whale ambergris and it’s often used as a lubricant and anti-corrosive agent. You can easily find it in moisturizers.
Progesterone: A steroid hormone that’s commonly used in anti-wrinkle products. They have have adverse systemic effects.
Retinol: Easily found in any anti-aging product that is derived from animals.
RNA (Ribonucleic Acid): It’s in all living cells and is used in many protein shampoos and cosmetics. Opt for plant cells!
Royal Jelly: Secretion from the throat glands of worker honeybees. Fed to the larvae in a colony to all queen larvae. There is no proven value in cosmetic preparations. (My favorite alternative to this is aloe vera!)
Shark Liver Oil (Squalane, Squalene): Often used in lubricating creams and lotions. Squalene is also found in hair dyes, surface-active agents, eye makeup, and lipsticks.
Shellac (Resinous Glaze): Resinous excretion of some insects. It can also be found in candy, hair lacquer, and even jewelry.
Spermaceti (Cetyl Palmitate, Sperm Oil): Waxy oil originally comes from the sperm of whale’s head or from dolphins but now it’s mostly derived from petroleum. It can be easily found in margarines, skin creams, ointments, shampoos, candles, etc.
Stearic Acid: It can be of plant origin, but if it’s animal derived it’s a fat from cows, pigs, and sheeps as well as from dogs and cats that were euthanized in animal shelters. Often found in cosmetics, soaps, lubricants, candles, hairspray, conditioners, deodorants, creams, chewing gum, food flavoring, etc.
Stearyl Alcohol (Sterols, Stearamine Oxide, Stearyl Acetate, Stearyl Caprylate, Stearyl Citrate, Stearyldimethyl Amine, Stearyl Glycyrrhetinate, Stearyl Heptanoate, Stearyl Octanoate, Stearyl Stearate): A mixture of solid alcohols that can be prepared from sperm whale oil. Often found in medicines, creams, rinses, shampoos, etc.
Steroids (Sterols): It comes from animal glands or plant tissues. Steroids include sterols which, as mentioned above, are alcohol from animals or plants (cholesterol). It’s used in hormone preparation and found in creams, lotions, hair conditioners, fragrances, etc.
Tallow (Tallow Fatty Alcohol, Stearic Acid): It’s rendered beef fat and can cause eczema as well as blackheads if it’s in cosmetics. You can easily find it in wax paper, crayons, margarines, paints, rubber, lubricants, candles, soaps, lipsticks, foundation, eye makeup, makeup removers, shaving creams, etc.
Turtle Oil (Sea Turtle Oil): It comes from the muscles and genital of these animals. It’s in soap, skin screams, nail creams, and other cosmetics.
Tyrosine: It’s an amino acid that often comes from plants or it’s synthetic but sometimes it’s hydrolyzed in casein (milk). It’s often found in cosmetics and creams.
Urea (Carbamide): It’s typically synthetic but when it’s extracted from animals, it comes from urine and other bodily fluids. Often found in deodorants, ammoniated dentifrices, mouthwashes, hair colorings, hand creams, lotions, shampoos, etc.
Vitamin A: It can come from fish or shark liver oil, egg yolk, butter, lemongrass, wheat germ oil, carotene (comes from carrots) and synthetics. Often found in makeup, creams, perfumes, hair dyes, vitamins and supplements.
Vitamin D (Ergocalciferol, Vitamin D2, Ergosterol, Provitamin D2, Calciferol, Vitamin D3): This vitamin can come from fish liver oil, milk, egg yolks, and other animal products but they can also come from plant sources.Vitamin D2 is normally vegan while Vitamin D3 can come from animal source. All of these vitamins can be found in creams, lotions, makeup, vitamin tablets, etc.
Wax: A glossy, hard substance that’s soft when it’s hot that derives from both plants and animals. It’s often found in lipsticks, depilatories, hair strengtheners, etc. You can easily find vegetable waxes online.