Vegan and organic are terms that may seem the same at a glance. However, from a beauty and skincare standpoint, they are entirely different. If you love to take time and break down your skincare labels, distinguishing vegan from organic skincare is easier.
Identifying vegan skincare products is not rocket science. The only difference vegan skincare has with organic skincare is the involvement of animals in any form.
Organic skincare is made from plant-based products but may have animal-based contents or be tested on animals. Its selling point is being free of any chemicals like pesticides or herbicides and artificial components that impose minimal up to zero damaging effects to the skin.
Organic skincare is better than natural skincare since natural products, though made with botanical components, still have a fair share of synthetic contents that are often mentioned last on the labels of skincare ingredients.
Judgment can be concluded if you know how to read and classify your label. Though the high demands of skincare had been quite an exciting journey to skincare brands, there has not been any particular guideline on when a product can be considered vegan and just simply organic.
You may have encountered skincare with a vegan logo, a leaping rabbit, or a rabbit head in its packaging. This symbol is often associated with vegan skincare, a sign that no animals were tested, involved, nor harmed in formulating the skincare products. Meanwhile, vegan skincare is simply put as organic skincare without any animal involved in producing and developing the product.
In the hierarchy of skincare, vegan skincare can be considered to be on top of organic and natural skincare.
In 1944, a charity called ‘The Vegan Society’ was founded in the United Kingdom. They initiated the international standards for vegan products and stressed that skincare products should not be animal-derived and even tested on animals for human consumption.
In January 2021, there’s a recorded 79 million vegans in the world. Vegans are considered a minority of the world population but brands acknowledge its increasing numbers. That is why they also strive to adhere to the vegan guidelines, except for China.
It is no secret that the country strictly implements all foreign products to be tested on animals since 2014. Until now, Animal Testing Law is still part of their operating procedures before releasing skincare products for public use. China is the only country in the world implementing this law.
With this, it can be implied that any brand selling in China is not considered vegan and cruelty-free, no matter how it claims to be vegan.
Whether you are just interested or would like to know more about vegan and organic skincare, you may be interested in taking a glimpse of possible ingredients that are non-vegan but can be organic.
- Keratin and lanolin – are made of sheep’s wool and animal hooves for anti-aging. Keratin and lanolin are extracted by either melting or exposing the animals to high temperatures.
- Carmine – is made from crushed beetle species thriving in South America and parts of Mexico and Arizona. It has a red pigment that is used as a coloring found in powders.
- Musk – are made from the dried private parts of otter, deer, civet cat, and similar animals. It is used as an aromatic agent for skincare products and perfumes.
- Squalene – is made of shark’s liver oil. It helps reduce the redness of the skin, treats wrinkles, and unclog pores.
- Hyaluronic acid – is made of coxcomb or the crest on top of the rooster’s head. It is known to make the skin plumper and often put to creams, serums, facial masks, and lip products.
- Stearic acid – is made from pig’s abdomen and beef fat. It smoothens and promotes the texture of the skin.
- Collagen – is made from the connective tissues of animals. The usual source of collagen, which is almost identical to human collagen, are cattle animals and marine species.
Over the years, vegans and animal societies made their ways to promote the formulation of cruel products. Brands have eventually discovered ways to replace these animal-derived products with plant-based alternatives though other brands are still ceaselessly profiting from skincare with animal involvements.