13 Reasons Why Illamasqua Set An Example To Beauty Brands Everywhere

When it comes to high-end beauty, Illamasqua are firmly up there as one of my favourite brands. Their products are incredible and the packaging appeals to my dark side, but most importantly, founder Julian Kynaston runs the British brand with ethics at its heart.

Firstly, Illamasqua is staunchly cruelty-free – they have never and will never test on animals. They also have a growing range of vegan products and only use synthetic hair in their make-up brushes. As a brand, Illamasqua are mindful of the ethical impact of their environmental impact and package their products accordingly. You can read Illamasqua’s full policy here.

 

 

Earlier this year, Illamasqua also released an Anti-Fascism Pledge, banning Trump supporters from buying their products. You can enjoy that pledge here.

Just when you thought you couldn’t love Illamasqua any more, they go and hire Munroe Bergdorf as part of their ongoing #Illamafia campaign.

Excited to announce that I'm one of the faces of the next @illamasqua campaign. #illamafia

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In case you missed the furore earlier this month, model and activist Munroe was controversially dropped from L’Oreal’s True Match campaign. As the first trans model to take part in the campaign, and a woman of colour at that, Munroe’s participation was a massive deal. After a mere three days as a face of L’Oreal (I brand I do not support as they test on animals), a Facebook post on racial violence written by Munroe after the Charlottesville protests was used by the Daily Mail to smear the model as a ‘racist’. She was promptly dropped by L’Oreal for not supporting their values of “diversity and tolerance”.

As a longstanding Illamasqua collaborator, we are angered to hear that @munroebergdorf has been dropped from the L’Oreal True Match Campaign. Illamasqua is a brand that stands proudly and unashamedly for diversity and equality. We don’t stand or accept any form of racism. But we also believe Munroe’s comments have been edited out of context by a certain media title (who we won’t bother naming) without telling a true story. In order for our generation to move forward and create a more inclusive society, its not just about showing diversity. We must all be free to talk about social issues in a constructive and tolerant way. #istandwithmunroe #munroebergdorf #illamafia #equality #diversity #loreal #thisistruediversity #weloveyoumunroe

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The decision to drop Munroe was disgraceful and hypocritical, and social media agreed. So it’s no surprise that Illamasqua picked up Munroe as part of their #Illamafia campaign, known for embracing diversity in all its forms. According to Munroe, this collaboration was planned before the whole L’Oreal saga. Speaking to Metro, she said: ‘it means the world that they stood by me during this tough time. ‘This is the first major campaign that I’ve modelled in for them and I can’t wait to kick off this new chapter.’

If that’s not enough to convince you that Illamasqua deserve your support, here are my three favourite vegan products:

  1. Hydra Veil is a cult classic for a reason. Hydrate and prime in the chicest way possible.

 

  1. Beyond Powder can be used wet or dry for buildable luminosity.

 

  1. Gel Colour is the blush you never knew you needed.

 

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Introducing Art de Parfum: An Interview With The Ethical Perfume Brand

Why is it that so few fragrance companies are truly cruelty-free? Jo Malone, Viktor & Rolf, Chanel and nearly all of the major fragrance houses sell perfumes tested on animals, meaning that the quest for a signature cruelty-free scent can often run dry.

One brand throwing their name into the mix is Art de Parfum, a London-based perfumery founded by Lithuanian-born Ruta Degutyte. The brand has a chic French aesthetic, making luxury perfumes that have ethics at their very core: not only are all the scents vegan and cruelty-free, they are GMO free and packaged in recyclable materials.

To find out more about Art de Parfum, I spoke to Ruta about her inspirations, her values and why more fragrance brands aren’t following in her footsteps.

4000x4000 HR 002 Bottle

What sparked your love affair with fragrance?
Nature was my first great inspiration. I grew up in Lithuania and folk medicine using flowers and herbs plays a huge role in our culture. As a child I would go to central market in Vilnius and I remember the piles of yarrow, comfrey and periwinkles on traders’ tables – everything had a purpose.

I was always interested in how things smelled. My first experiments involved soaking rose petals in water when I was eight, a basic attempt at enfleurage. Needless to say, my first experiments didn’t smell good at all.

My mother’s dressing table was my inspiration and my altar. I remember the sheer awe with which I would uncap those tiny bottles of extrait and sniff the stopper. It was that, more than anything, that taught me that perfume is a gift, capable of evoking emotions.

What inspired you to start your brand?
I saw a gap in the market for perfumes that communicated powerful emotions, but in a clean, uncluttered way. There is too much Baroque posturing in perfume these days. The message of these perfumes gets lost in all the noise. I thought that there would be men and women out there who would welcome a line of perfumes that put across a feeling with elegant minimalism, and I was right.

The people who buy my fragrances often choose them as their signature fragrance rather than as an addition to an already crowded collection. My perfumes speak to people on a deeply personal level. The emphatic choice of one over many says a lot.

My bottles, the marketing, the language used to describe the scents – it’s all pared back as much as possible to allow the perfume to speak for itself.

4000x4000 04 HR product

You’ve lived all over the world – has that inspired Art de Parfum?
Most definitely. The relaxed, beachy lifestyles of the South of France and the South Pacific really draw out my sensuality and sense of fun – qualities that might be more hidden in places like London.

Living in London has taught me about the attractions of unfussy design. There’s a minimalism to my packaging and bottles that I think is quite British. I’d define the brand’s aesthetic as halfway between English restraint and Japanese minimalism.

For me, it always goes back to France, where I went to look for a perfumer and raw materials. The lifestyle that I loved the most was in the South of France, on the Riviera. People there are far more hedonistic and relaxed in their own sensuality. When I’m there, it’s easy to imagine Zelda Fitzgerald strolling down the beach for a pre-prandial whiskey or three. I love the escapism!

What’s the one thing French girls know about fragrance that the rest of the world need to know?
I don’t think that French girls are that much different from the rest of us when it comes to fragrance, actually. Like us, they tend to be monogamous when they find a scent they love.

If there is one thing that’s slightly different, it’s this: French girls regard perfume as an essential part of the grooming process. For them, scent is as crucial a decision as hairstyle, make-up, or clothes. They are unembarrassed about perfume and like to discuss it with their friends. Other cultures tend to be a bit reserved about admitting their interest in fragrance because they think it makes them seem superficial. French girls don’t care about that.

4000x4000 HR 005 product

Have you always had such a strong ethical standpoint?
Ethics is a part of who I am, so when I started my own company there was no question that ethics would lie at the heart of the brand. For me to go about it any other way would have gone against the grain of who I am. It’s that simple.

The first thing I did when I established Art de Parfum was to draft a Code of Ethics that still stands as core company policy today. The general principles outlined in our Code of Ethics are:

All fragrances are 100% cruelty-free
We do not use natural musk, castoreum, civet, honey, or even ambergris.

All raw materials and packaging are environmentally safe
The packaging and bottling is often the most expensive part of the process for a small company like mine. Most bottle plants have a minimum order of 20,000 units, never mind the cost of finding recyclable materials. Still, I knew that I had to put my money where my mouth is.

The cap on our perfume bottles is made from sustainably-planted wood, and the bottle is 100% recyclable glass. Everything comes with certificates of origin for green and bio-hazard-free production. The box is made of a natural, linen-covered cardboard material that biodegrades fully.

The company does not use GMO-related products or raw materials
I don’t want Art de Parfum to support, however indirectly, efforts to control the natural reproductive systems of plants and flowers.

All fragrances are free of nano-particles
Art de Parfum will continue to keep their products nano-particle-free until scientists prove conclusively that they do not cause any damage to humans, plant life, or water sources.

The company will use only raw materials that do not harm the economic interests or physical safety of indigenous hunters and farmers in third world countries.
Art de Parfum does not use raw materials that may endanger the livelihood or physical safety of farmers in third world countries. Instead of oud wood, which is now endangered and the process of harvesting resinated wood in the deep jungle is hazardous for local hunters, I chose to use cypriol oil to approximate the scent.

4000x4000 HR 003 product

Why do you think so few perfume brands are cruelty-free and inconsiderate of their environmental impact?
Because being ethical is expensive! It requires a serious investment of time and money to ensure that every part of the company’s operations in line with the code of ethics.

For example, you can’t say you are ethical and then use packaging that contains more plastic than a toy store. Ensuring that the raw materials are not tested on animals also means that you have to have eyes on every part of the supply chain. For many small businesses, that’s near to impossible. I am lucky in that I work with a small team of suppliers, and my perfumer knows to check everything that comes into the lab.

What animal ingredients should we watch out for in other perfumes?
In general, there are no concerns about ingredients coming from animal origin if synthetic molecules are used, because these are synthesised in a lab. For example, instead of using natural ambergris in Sea Foam, we use Ambroxan, a synthetic molecule synthesised from clary sage, a herb.

For natural raw materials, avoid perfumes that use natural castoreum, deer musk, or civet. Natural ambergris, hyraceum, and honey do not involve animal cruelty because of their manner of harvesting,  but they are of animal origin. So few companies use these animal substances in their natural form, so it shouldn’t worry consumers.

4000x4000 HR 001 Bottle

Do you think more fragrance brands will follow in your ethical footsteps?
In my experience, ethics flow from the top down. If the CEO is ethically-minded, then it stands to reason that ethics will be at the heart of everything they do.

I chose an ethical route for my company but I recognise that not everybody feels the same. One thing I will say is that it’s always better to educate people about ethics and allow them to come to their own personal awakening than to force it down their throats with aggressive legislation. Small business owners struggle to stay afloat, and excessive intervention by any official body, be it a regulatory body or a decree, is always met with resentment.

Instead of making ethics a burden, they should be rewarded or incentivised in some way. Of course, the best incentive is when your customers continue to buy from you because they trust you as a source of ethical products.

Shop Art de Parfum at www.artdeparfum.com or in store at BLOOM, Covent Garden

UPDATED: Bybi Beauty Launch Three New Beauty Staples

How do I love Clean Beauty Co? Let me count the ways… No seriously, let me count them.

Founded by Elsie and Dominika right here in the UK (I am all for British female-founded brands), Clean Beauty Co have always stood for cruelty-free, clean and (mostly*) vegan beauty and skincare. First I fell in love with their coffee body scrub and Fuss Free Moisturiser (which you can read about here), then I tried their Rosy Glow Face Oil which has become my daily glow-giver. I will be distraught when this runs out.

Since then, Elsie and Dominika have gone on to release a natural beauty book (with recipes for the likes of this Zest Espresso Scrub) and launch Bybi Beauty, a 100% natural skincare line inspired by innovation in beauty and skin without compromising on high-quality, non-toxic ingredients. The inspiration for the name? By Beauty Insiders.

We’ve already been treated to Babe Balm (£28), a multipurpose beauty balm that you can use as a highlighter, a moisturiser, a lip balm, a glitter sticker (I’m coining the technical term) and much, much more. Made with pink sweet potato extract and Brazilian Pequi oil, this balm smells as juicy as it looks and it’s a fixture on my bedside table.

Babe on babe on babe 😍

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Next up was Prime Time (£24), a creamy face scrub made with apple and pineapple acids that smells like a holiday in a pot. I talk a lot about the texture of scrubs on this blog and you’ll know by now that I hate pathetic no-scrub scrubs. Prime Time manages to be gentle on my skin (even moisturising thanks to the oil ingredients) but still get rid of dry skin and make my face feel fresher.

Now, Bybi Beauty have just unveiled the full range of #tribybi launches (three new products launched over three weeks) – world, firstly meet Detox Dust (£22), an anti-pollution powder face mask with activated charcoal to chill out stressed skin. Boasting papaya enzymes, kaolin clay, ginseng, blackcurrant extract and more, mixing a teaspoon of this mask with a few drops of water, oil or (better yet) vegan yogurt and leaving on for 10-15 minutes will leave you with decongested skin that feels cleaner, purer and calmer.

The powder consistency means Detox Dust has a longer shelf life than fresh face masks and doesn’t count in your holiday liquid allowance – double win.

Next, the natural beauty brand dropped the Mega Mist Hyaluronic Acid Toner (£26), a facial mist which doubles as a toner, rejuvenating, refreshing and hydrating dry, thirsty skin. I definitely notice a difference in my skin when I consistently use a toner at night, and knowing that this won’t irritate my skin is a big plus. The key ingredient, hyaluronic acid, is a major player in keeping your skin plump, while rose, orange blossom and pomegranate also boost moisture.

🌹• Triple threat

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The world cannot get enough of facial mists right now, so choose a natural, cruelty-free and vegan version over something riddled with dubious ethics and synthetic ingredients.

Finally, Bybi beauty introduced Supercharge Serum (£32). As I mentioned, the Clean Beauty Co Rosy Glow oil is my life saver, so my ears prick up whenever I see another oil or serum come from this brand. Supercharge Serum is packed with (vegan) squalane, prickly pear (anyone else getting Jungle Book vibes?), jasmine and watermelon seed oils, ingredients hand-picked to deeply penetrate skin and promote rapid cell renewal, combating dull and uneven skin.

This nutrient-dense corrective serum is rich in antioxidants and will target dry skin as part of your nightly routine – what’s not to like?

So how many ways do I love Clean Beauty Co? I count fifteen, and the list is ever-growing. Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried any Bybi beauty products, I’d love to hear what you think.

*Ingredients have included beeswax and honey in a limited amount of products

This post has been updated with Bybi Beauty’s newest launches

What To Buy Now Nars Is No Longer Cruelty-Free

In case you missed the news last week, Nars Cosmetics recently announced that they would be expanding their business into China. As harmless as this might sound to non-vegans, the move means that the once staunchly cruelty-free make-up brand will now be legally required to test on animals, despite their so-called ethics.

In a statement released on their Instagram page (where fans flooded @narsissist with #boycottnars), Nars attempted to justify the move stating “The global elimination of animal testing needs to happen. We firmly believe that product and ingredient safety can be proven by non-animal methods, but we must comply with the local laws… We have decided to make NARS available in China because we feel it is important to bring our vision of beauty and artistry to fans in the region.”

We want you to know that we hear you. The global elimination of animal testing needs to happen. We firmly believe that product and ingredient safety can be proven by non-animal methods, but we must comply with the local laws of the markets in which we operate, including in China. We have decided to make NARS available in China because we feel it is important to bring our vision of beauty and artistry to fans in the region. NARS does not test on animals or ask others to do so on our behalf, except where required by law. NARS is committed and actively working to advance alternative testing methods. We are proud to support the Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS), a globally recognized organization at the forefront of advancing non-animal methods in China and around the world. NARS is hopeful that together, we can work toward a cruelty-free world. For more on the good work IIVS is doing, see: http://bit.ly/2rVjnwV

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I’m calling bullshit on this – the sole reason for expanding into China is greed and money and Nars’ poor attempt at an apology did not go down well with those who have long supported the brand’s cruelty-free status.

Now that they’re firmly on the AVOID list, I’ve put together a guide to what to do with your favourite Nars products. Use up what you’ve got or donate it to women in need (like Give and Makeup), then make some ethical swaps. Here are five cruelty-free and vegan products to take their place.

SWAP Nars Blush for Urban Decay Afterglow 8-Hour Powder Blush

So long, Orgasm. Swap the cult blush for Urban Decay’s long-lasting powder blush with just the right amount of shimmer.

SWAP Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil for B. Matte Lipstick

Creamy, pigmented and affordable, B.’s Matte and Luminous lipsticks are the perfect swap for Nars’ iconic pencils. The entire make-p range is vegan and cruelty-free (you can read my blog post about it here), so shop eyes, lips, cheeks and face without fear.

SWAP Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer for Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer

Collection’s Lasting Perfection Concealer is the most underrated base product around. A little goes a long way, it blends flawlessly and it costs less than a pint. If you are looking for cheaper vegan options, I wrote a blog on the best budget vegan beauty brands here.

F A V E 💘 hands up who loves our Lasting Perfection Concealer?! 🙌 [📷 by @cally_oneill]

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SWAP Nars Bronzing Powder for Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow

Charlotte Tilbury’s Filmstar Bronze and Glow looks as good on your face as it does on your dressing table.

SWAP Nars Sheer Glow Foundation for Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

If you’re looking for sheer, lightweight coverage (especially in this heat), Urban Decay can’t be beaten when it comes to cruelty-free, vegan, blendable face products. Read my love letter to the brand here.

Coverage without compromise. Tap now to shop Naked Skin Liquid Makeup. #TheNakedEffect #UrbanDecay

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What are you doing with your old Nars products and what will you be swapping them for? Let me know in the comments below!

Instagram/ @sttropeztan/ @soso.smith

4 Of The Best Vegan Gradual Tans

When it comes to the great British summertime, here in England we’ll take whatever sun we can get. Anything above 18 degrees Celsius is considered Pimms o’clock while lunchtimes are spent soaking up rays on a dusty patch of grass rather than chomping on a Pret sandwich at your desk. But for all the extra hours of vitamin D, some of us still need a helping hand when it comes to transforming into a bronzed goddess. Step in, gradual tan.

For people like me who steer clear of full-on fake tan (and avoid dangerous sun beds), gradual tans are lifesavers. It’s easy, buildable colour, it’s difficult to go wrong and they don’t add an extra step into my morning routine. I used to use Garnier’s Summer Body Lotion when I was a teen, but because they test on animals (BOO!) I’ve since switched to cruelty-free and vegan alternatives – here are four of the best gradual tans for a cruelty-free glow this summer.

St Tropez Everyday Tinted Body Lotion (Gradual Tan Tinted)

St Tropez are known for their incredible tans, so it’s no surprise that this gradual tanning lotion is impressive. Coming in a 200ml bottle, the tinted lotion gives an instant wash of colour to my skin without any glittery chunks. I don’t find the lotion the easiest to apply in that I have to rub it in quite firmly, but it’s still my number one recommendation.

St Tropez Everyday Multi-Active Toning Lotion (Gradual Tan Plus Sculpt And Glow)

Are you starting to see a theme here? I tend to pick up these gradual tans at my work’s beauty sales which is why this tube is in my collection – I’d normally go for a darker shade, but I’m still impressed with this. The lotion is slightly easier to apply than the Tinted Body Lotion and it does give a nice colour to skin, as well as a visible shimmer. If that’s not your preference, maybe steer clear. This is also supposed to tone up my skin after four weeks of regular use, but I haven’t seen incredible results just yet. Watch this space!

Weekend is here, time to get that glow on! #StTropezTan #yourultimatetan #Regram @stylebybeautyblog

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St Tropez Gradual Tan In Shower (In Shower Tanning Lotion)

 

OK, so this blog post is turning into a bit of a love letter to St Tropez. I am a huge fan of anything you can use in shower to save time in the morning, so this is a fixture in my bathroom. Waiting naked in the shower for three minutes while this develops can be annoying (time it with one song on your playlist or brush your teeth in between) but it gives a good colour, no smell and doesn’t rub off on your clothes.

Skinny Tan Gradual Tanner

I’ve only used this tan a couple of times so I don’t think I can give a proper review just yet, but from first impressions this could be a winner for some of you. Connotations about the name aside (your body is beautiful whatever size you are), Skinny Tan’s 125ml Gradual Tanner is really easy to apply and doesn’t immediately have that tell-tale fake tan smell (I did smell a biscuit-ty scent when I applied this one morning but I didn’t follow the instructions and wash off after five hours). When used for a couple of days in a row, I did see my skin start to shimmer, but I need to test this more to see if the gradual tan works for my skin tone.

Are there any vegan gradual tanners I don’t know about yet? Leave your recommendations in the comments below!

Image via @sttropeztan/ @soso.smith

The Vegan Kind Beauty Box Review: May

It’s that time again! After a tough couple of months, I was really looking forward to receiving my The Vegan Kind Beauty Box back in May. I love seeing that pink and green packaging arrive through my front door and although it might not be an essential expense (for someone who’s about to start paying a lot more rent, aka me), I haven’t been disappointed with the contents yet. Here’s my review of May’s box:

PHB Ethical Beauty Natural Black Mascara, £15.95

As I mentioned in my last Beauty Box review, I never thought that I was the biggest fan of PHB Ethical Beauty. However with the more products I try from their range of eye, lip and face products, the more I think I judged the packaging too soon. This mascara is a great basic to have in your stash – it lengthens lashes, is a good shade and doesn’t clump. I wouldn’t say that it gives as much curl or volume as I normally like, but my taste for ‘60s style lashes might be a bit too much for others. I’ll definitely use this on more casual days.

Maggie Anne Strawberry and Grape Nail Varnish Remover, £8.95

With none of that chemical smell you find with other nail varnish removers, Maggie Anne’s remover is acetone-free and enriched with Argan oil and vitamin E. It definitely felt gentle to use on my nails and only took a few seconds longer than stronger (and harsher) polish remover to clean all the colour off my fingers and toes. This comes in three different scents (Lemon & Lime and Blueberry & Pomegranate as well as Strawberry & Grape), and Maggie Anne also sell a range of nail colours and accessories from £1.95 for a file to £10.50 for a polish. I’ll definitely be keeping my eye on these.

Zerreau Waterless Towel Off Shampoo, £3.99

Because I have fine, curly hair, I can be very particular about the products I use. I wash my hair every other day in the morning, and on the days I don’t I usually use an aerosol dry shampoo like Phil Smith’s Dry Shampoo or Batiste. This Zerreau towel off shampoo comes in a foam consistency, which you work into your roots before, as the name suggests, towel off, no water needed. I’m not the biggest fan of this. For starters, I avoid towel drying my hair because the friction breaks up my curls and makes them frizzy. The pump is also silent while you’re squirting out the foam, so it’s hard to know how much has come out when you’re trying to target the back of your head without a mirror. I found that the foam ended up on my hair more than my scalp and roots too. This might work for straight-haired vegans as my hair didn’t feel greasy at all and the smell was refreshing, but a spray is so much easier for me. I got the coconut scent, but you can pick up apple or strawberry at Superdrug. I’m also happy that they do a version for afro hair here.

Aqua Esse Equilibrium B12 Infused Pure Alkaline Natural Spring Water, £1.95

This bottle of natural spring water is in really pretty packaging (not to mention that the water is millennial pink), and is infused with B12 (a vitamin a lot of vegetarians and vegans lack). At £1.95 a bottle it’s not actually that much more expensive than a bottle of water at a London station, so given the choice, I might opt for this in future to boost my B12. It really does just taste like water though – not that that’s a bad thing!

Amie New Leaf Deep Pore Exfoliating Polish, £5.95 for a full size tube

I love Amie products, so I was really happy to open up my box and see this inside. It’s a decent sample size at 25ml, perfect for travelling and smells great. It’s also gentle without being pathetic – my pet skincare peeve is scrubs and exfoliators that you can barely feel. As with most brands who are included in these beauty boxes, there’s a discount code if you wanted to buy more Amie products (which I do).

#Repost @thevegankind (@get_repost) ・・・ ❤️❤️❤️ Made with the best all natural ingredients, @amie_natural_skincare gentle and effective formulas are your skin’s best friend: bursting with high-quality natural plant extracts that work in complete harmony with your skin to help keep it clear, soft and radiant. Their gorgeous range is all cruelty free, vegan, pH-balanced, free from parabens and mineral oils, and free from nasties such as petrochemicals and plastic micro-beads. New Leaf Deep Pore Exfoliating Polish is a deep cleansing treatment containing natural rice granules and bamboo stem that work deep-down into pores to lift away dirt, oil and impurities, revealing clearer, smoother skin, and will boost circulation and encourage a natural radiance. Mango and orange blossom extracts help tone and refresh oily and combination skin, and cocoa seed butter and mango seed butter will nourish, soften and condition skin – a truly natural face scrub! 😍😍😍

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What I forgot to mention in my last blog post is that from the cost of every The Vegan Kind Beauty Box subscription, 20p is donated to a different charity each quarter. For May, this is the Dr Hadwen Trust, a “leading non-animal medical research charity who fund and promote the development of techniques nd procedures to replace the use of animals in biomedical research”. Look great, feel good and donate to a charity at the same time?! This is why I love The Vegan Kind.

Do you subscribe to any vegan beauty boxes? Let me know in the comments below, plus sign up to The Vegan Kind’s Beauty Box here if you’re intrigued.

Happy Anniversary, Green People! 

Green People might have been a fixture in your bathroom cabinet for years, months or only a couple of weeks, but the brand have been around for decades. Two, in fact – 2017 marks Green People’s 20th anniversary. 

Starting out as a home remedy for founder Charlotte Vøhtz’s daughter and her sensitive, eczema-prone skin, Green People is now a full beauty, skin and haircare range renowned for their commitment to organic ingredients and high-quality products. You can read more about Green People’s story and milestones here


To celebrate their 20th anniversary, Green People invited me to a gorgeous event in the roof garden of the Ham Yard Hotel where they showcased their zesty Orange Blossom range and launched the special edition Damask Rose collection. The range includes a moisturiser, cleanser and hand cream, as well as a rose lipstick, all with around 90% certified organically grown ingredients. 

The range is heavily (but naturally) rose scented, but a little goes a long way. I’ve definitely overdosed on the moisturiser at nighttime and ended up slathering it all down my neck and chest to not waste any. The cleanser is a cream consistency, which I never used to like but I am getting back into, thanks to this special edition line and the Gentle Cleanse & Makeup Remover


As with all Green People products I’ve tried, these products are very gentle on the skin. The pump packaging means they’re clean and easy to use too, stamped with a gorgeous rose on the front of each bottle. 

The Damask Rose lipstick is cruelty-free, but does contain organic beeswax. I asked Green People’s Cosmetic Scientist, Ian Taylor, whether they’d consider switching to vegan wax in future, and his answer was honest. Ian explained that until they could find an organic alternative to beeswax that was just as effective, certain Green People products would remain non-vegan. Ian did confirm that all Green People squalane comes from olives, not fish scales.


Through all the chemicals, the animal cruelty and slightly-dodgy claims of how ‘organic’ brands really are, Green People have stood the test of time as a brand of ethics and integrity. Happy 20th anniversary Charlotte and the whole Green People team, here’s to 20 more! 

What’s your favourite Green People product? Let me know in the comments below! 

B. Make-Up Launches Today & It’s 100% Vegan

It’s no surprise that UK-based vegans love Superdrug. The brand has a strong stance against animal testing, stock a huge range of vegan-friendly hair, body and beauty brands and their essentials range is clearly marked when vegan friendly.

I’ve been using their B. skincare range for the past year (I love their Micellar Oil), so when a mysterious invite celebrating a brand new B. launch dropped in my inbox, I was excited. Was it a new product? Would it be vegan? Was it amazing? The answer turned out to be… all of the above, and you should be excited too.

Today, B. are launching a brand new make-up range covering everything from foundation and colour correcting palettes to whipped bronzers, matte liquid lipsticks and pigments. It’s all cruelty-free (of course), but the most exciting news is that every single product in the range is completely vegan. Superdrug are shouting about it too, making ethics a priority in the production and marketing of this range.

B. Cosmetics launching online 31.05.17 #comingsoon #vegan #crueltyfree #Bmakeup #makeup

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It was also great to see Superdrug catering to a range of skin tones in both the newly launched foundation (12 shades), concealer (14 shades in duo palettes), brow (light to dark) and contouring shades (light to dark) and the models they chose to promote the new make-up range. I’m adding this to the long, long list of reasons I love Superdrug, although there is room for improvement in catering to the darkest of skin tones in terms of the contour kits and blushes.

At the launch party, held at the very chic Hoxton Holborn where I sipped cocktails and munched vegan canapés alongside my new fave animal activist Lucy Watson, I was given a few new products to try – so far, I’m impressed.

B Beauty

The Luminous Silk Lipstick in Blazing Berry (£6.99) is a bright, bold red that goes on smoothly and stays creamy all day, it also wore down quite well without leaving me looking like I had 2000s lipliner on. There are eight shades in this finish, 12 Velvet Matte lip shades and six lip liners.

The Velvet Matte Liquid Lipstick in Pinky Promise (£6.99) is so pigmented and doesn’t go on patchy like some matte lips. I haven’t had a chance to test this one out to see how it wears, but I have high hopes. The colour is quite pale for my skin tone, so I’m hoping it looks more 1960s than Year 7 make-up disaster. This would be good to pair with the Lip Scrub and Lip Primer, and you can clear up any mistakes with the Pro Lip Corrector.

Something BIG is coming #vegan #officialbbeauty #crueltyfree #comingsoon #onlineexclusive

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I don’t normally contour but on first swatch, the Sculpt & Highlight Contour Pen (£8.99) has a creamy, blendable bronzing shade that’s easy to apply. I’m not a massive fan of the highlight shade to be completely honest, but it might work better on lighter skins – this comes in four shades. There’s also a Matte Bronzer, Illuminating Radiance Pen, Radiance Powder and Contour Kit in the new B. Make-Up range.

The Kohl Liner in Copper is only £4.99 and is so creamy and blendable. I love the colour and the tip is fine enough to do as thin a line as you like. This only comes in six shades at the moment (including white, great for a ‘60s, eye-widening look) but I hope more are on the way. The rest of the B. eye range includes Gel Liner, three mascaras, a Defining Duo Liner, pigments and brow stylers, creams and contour kits.

The launch also sees the debut of a collection with make-up artist Cassie Lomas, who describes her collection as being inspired by ‘fun in the sun and my best friends’. The Whipped Bronzer is the product I’m most excited to test when it hits Superdrug shelves, with other sunkissed products like a Liquid Illuminator, gold-toned pigments and juicy matte liquid lips.

Did I mention that this is all on top of a full make-up tool collection and their existing skincare range? And that the packaging is

The full B. make-up collection is available online and in stores today – let me know what you pick up in the comments! Thank you Superdrug for catering for those who choose to avoid animal by-products in our beauty routines.

Organic Beauty & Wellbeing Week

It might be Monday and the beginning of another long week, but today marks the start of Organic Beauty & Wellbeing week! Boasting a week-long calendar of talks, workshops and events, The Soil Association have enlisted brands like Odylique, Naissance and Voya to join their Pop Up Shop and event space at Protein Studios, London.

Naissance are setting up a bespoke serum bar, where you can drop in and pick up a serum of organic oils blended especially for your skin type – for free!

#Lovenaturallovenaissance #beauty #natural #organic #organicbeauty #makeyourown #naissanceontour #ComeCleanAboutBeauty

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Then there’s a skin cleansing clinic brought to you by Voya, a conversation with eco blogger Kate Arnell and a Stress Less workshop in association with Neal’s Yard Remedies.

You can check out a full list of workshops here – most of them are in work hours or begin at 5.30pm, but there are a couple this weekend too, as well as a free night of food and beauty on Thursday.

Brands are getting involved in Organic Beauty Week by offering discounts and free samples of their organic ranges. Amber of Amber’s Beauty Talk has a great round up on her blog here, and you can see a complete list (mapped out by city, no less) on the Soil Association website.

If you are interested in getting to know some more organic brands, why don’t you try…

Odylique

Sticking to their organic principles since 2003, Odylique are a great option for anyone who’s on the hunt for products that work for sensitive skin.

Face Mask Friday! 💆🏻

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Botanicals

Serums, creams, masks and balms in a range of tempting scents. There’s a free ‘Try Me’ pot with every order placed this week.

Nourish

This is a tentative one as I haven’t actually tried this brand, but I’ve heard very good things and if they’ve got the Soil Associations stamp of approval, I have faith in them. If you do try anything from Nourish, let me now in the comments below!

Image: Soil Association

Design Your Dream Vegan Handbag With Wilby

When it comes to a vegan wardrobe, hard-wearing, non-hideous accessories have historically been the hardest things to find. But thanks to a slew of ethical companies making cruelty-free cool again, vegan bags are no longer beige bag-for-life affairs.

Wilby, one of the most dependable vegan bag brands, have been making cool, classic and colourful designs since 2013, committed to providing consumers with “choices that are both ethical and fashionable.” But their latest launch? It’s all about you.

The UK-based brand have teamed up with PETA to launch a search for the next ‘it’ bag, inviting entries from budding designers or “anyone who’s passionate about animal-free fashion.” The judging panel includes ex-Made In Chelsea star Lucy Watson, who is increasingly proving herself to be an influential advocate for animal rights. In fact, Lucy is about to release her first book, Feed Me Vegan, with recipes for everything from breakfast to dinner (or in her words, supper).

The winning design will be made by Wilby in the UK with completely vegan materials, saving the mistreatment and slaughter of cows, pigs, goats and sheep for style and vanity. You’ve got until May 17th to enter via PETA’s website, before PETA draw up a shortlist of five designs for Lucy to choose the winner from. The winner will be announced at the end of May, and you can e-mail contest@peta.org.uk if you have any questions.

Thanks to brands like Wilby, Matt and Nat and Poppy Lissiman (Stella’s a little out of my budget right now), vegan accessories have come a long way. It’s nice to see a brand reach out to their customers to find out what cruelty-free styles are missing from the marketplace, and using celebrities to amplify this message with integrity. Would this competition have worked as well with a TV personality who wasn’t as committed to animal right? Hell no. I can’t wait to see the winning design.

Will you be entering? Please let me know below and I’ll watch out for your design!