June 20, 2008

My Favorite Cruelty-Free Products

My (short) Story

Sometime last year (2007) I started to realize that most of the consumer products I use, such as toiletries, cosmetics, household cleaners and many other items, are still to this day being tested on animals in the most cruel and careless ways.
Horrified by my own ignorance, I read more and more information on Animal Testing and how NOT to contribute to this cruel and unnecessary practice. I found many lists of brands and companies that are CRUELTY FREE, and of course of the companies that DO and/or approve of Animal Testing.
I compiled my personalized Good- and Bad-Products Lists and will not ever again knowingly buy anything produced by uncaring companies.
Animal Testing is NOT necessary, there are other methods.
Some of the Big Bullies in my household were P&G, SC Johnson or JOHNSON&JOHNSON, UNILEVER, 3M (!), which include familiar household names like Colgate, Palmolive, Tide, Clorox, Draino, Post-it and many more!
A couple of days later I had read more about Animal Issues and watched several video clips documenting cruel and inhumane treatment of animals, including "Meet your Meat"
(WARNING! may not be suitable for children!).
I have decided to NOT EAT MEAT anymore (yes, that includes seafood), and also avoid Eggs and Dairy and other animal products.
The last time I ate an animal was Christmas Eve 2007, we had fish.
Now I am learning to cook vegetarian meals, good thing I have always liked veggies and soy-products, after six months I feel leaner and healthier, and best of all guilt-free.
I consider myself blessed, somehow stumbling onto this information, making the change in order to live a cruelty-free life, and having a very supportive husband.
I hope many more people will be made aware and do something about cruelty to animals.

My Favorite Products

Since December 2007 I have been able to replace most of my household-, Personal Care- and Cosmetics- Products with cruelty-free items, buying only brands that are listed by trusted organizations as cruelty-free and/or not tested on animals (see links on my side-bar), as soon as each "conventional" product ran out. I do not believe throwing out products already owned is helpful, since they are paid for and would only end up polluting landfills.
A nice bonus buying cruelty-free is that most of the animal-friendly companies use natural ingredients and are therefore also eco-friendly and better for us.
So here are some of my personal favorites:

Whole Foods' 365 Everyday Value
Citrus Grapefruit Shampoo for normal and oily hair.
"Free of parabens, animal ingredients, artificial fragrance, and unnecessary chemicals. Made with biodegradable ingredients. Not tested on animals."
At $3.79 for 32fl oz it's even cheaper than "regular" drugstore brand shampoo, so this is one product I can actually save on. I love this shampoo, it keeps my hair clean and fresh longer than any shampoo I used before, and the fresh grapefruit scent is very pleasant.

Nature's Gate
Organics Fruit Blend Rejuvenating Conditioner in Asian Pear & Red Tea
12 fl.oz/354ml $7.99
made w/ certified organic botanicals
delivers nutrients for soft, silky, healthy-looking hair
helps protect against color-fade
helps smooth split ends & protect against breakage
I have been using it for about two months now, it feels like Nexxus, and it does smooth my hair, so much so that I no longer need a detangler, I use a wideteethed comb to detangle before rinsing. It also seems to help prevent or at the least reduce split ends.
The soft fruity smell is not intrusive, and it is quite easy to rinse out.

CRYSTAL Body Deodorant

All Natural Protection
4.25 oz/120g $6.99 at Drugstores & Grocery Chains
Made of 100% natural mineral salts, Contains No Aluminum Chlorohydrate,
Hypoallergenic, Fragrance & Paraben Free.
It works!! No smell, no body-odor, no white stains, even my husband likes it.
It's basically a big crystal rock mounted in plastic for easy handling, you wet it or apply to moist armpits, and it does not stain your skin nor your clothing, not even black tops.
People say it lasts about 1 year, so great value too.
I have been sniffing my armpits - nothing, even after sweating. This one is a keeper!

Avalon Organics

Aloe-Unscented Hand & Body Lotion
12 fl.oz/350ml $10.95
Sweet almond oil, protective plant lipids & rich oat nutrition of Beta Glucon deliver sumptuous skin hydration. No parabens, harsh preservatives or grapefruit seed extract.
100% vegetarian ingredients. No animal testing.
Being hyper-sensitive to most scents, I love having this nice lotion without the aggravated sinus, and it works great, absorbs quickly, no greasy film whatsoever. It is relatively expensive, so I use it on my arms and upper body and have a cheaper St.Ives brand lotion for everything else (away from the nose).

Nature's Gate
Creme de Anise Natural Toothpaste w/ baking soda & anise oil
6 oz/170g $4.99
fluoride-free,preservative-free,no artificial colors,no artificial sweeteners

The Anise flavor is a pleasant surprise and doesn not leave you with the minty-aftertaste that makes anything you eat after brushing taste odd or yucky. Personally I prefer paste, but the brand offers Gel in different flavors.
Ingredient Alert: Baking Soda - just found out that most products containing baking soda may get their ingredients from Arm & Hammer, the leading producer in the US, which Approves of and Does Animal Testing!! Still waiting on news whether or not Nature's Gate gets its baking soda from A&H or otherwise, please read

Clinique's 3-step skin care system

Website prices: $14.50 for 6.5fl oz Liquid Soap, $11.00 for 6.7fl oz Clarifying Lotion, $23.00 for 4.2oz Moisture Gel, available for different skin types.
Initially I asked for a sample at the Clinique counter at Macy's, they gave me 3 little 0.5oz samples, a 7 day supply, which lasted twice as long, you really only need a drop of each, and I really liked it.
The cleanser is mild enough to use on the eye area, the toner feels refreshing and not too harsh, and the moisture gel is really light, absorbes quickly, no greasy film and yet very moisturizing.
Tip : Sephora now sells a 3-step set for $23.00
, Set includes 1oz Liquid Facial Soap Mild, 2oz Clarifying Lotion, 4.2oz Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion.

Method, people against dirty

hand wash in sweet water, about $3.99 for 12 fl oz at Target.
It comes in a nice tear-drop shaped plastic bottle in a bunch of other colors/scents. Also available as creamy- or foaming hand wash. It is gentle and contains vitamin E and aloe. Biodegradable and Never Tested on Animals.
dish soap in pink grapefruit, about $3.99 for 25fl.oz/739ml at Target.
Gentle on hands and tough on grease with nice suds, but without harsh chemicals. Also packaged in a stylish clear bottle, so it even looks good on my counter.
I love this product, and I will keep using it. Look for different scents and colors.

Seventh Generation
Laundry Free & Clear High Efficiency Liquid Concentrates 50 fl.oz. $9.99
Non-toxic and hypo-allergenic
Free of chlorine, phosphates, optical brighteners, petroleum-based ingredients, and dyes
Biodegradable and safe for septic and greywater systems
Not tested on animals
This is a great non-toxic, hypo-allegenic, earth- and animal-friendly, high-efficiency laundry detergent.Just makes me want to do laundry ;-)

Other than laundry and dishwashing, I clean using natural everyday kitchen items like vinegar and baking soda with water and microfiber cloths, it works and my household is less toxic for it.

Note: prices may vary by location
Tip : if you have access to a military base, you will save considerably.


Flower Power said...

Very cool Natali! :)

It's great to see we have these alternatives today. There are also websties and abooks that show you how to make your own.

J S said...

Nice story! It's great to see you blogging about animals and vegetarianism. You comment on my wife's blog quite a bit, and we've found your comments/support to be most helpful and they are appreciated.

Keep up the good work!

Veg since 12/31/1999

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