If you are thinking about going vegan, you’ll want to know about hidden animal ingredients in places where you may least expect to find them
I am not a vegan. But for environmental and health reasons, I am eating less meat. It isn’t easy for me. But I was talking to Dr. Sally Fisher at Sunrise Springs in Santa Fe a while ago, telling her I wanted to do it. And whining about how it was hard! She said, “Don’t think about it as eating less meat. Think about how we all need eight to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables daily to ward off serious disease, like heart disease, etc. And that’s hard, if you eat a lot of meat!”
I’m not alone in wanting to cut back. As evidenced by a whopping 90 percent increase in Google searches for the word “vegan” worldwide, veganism is definitely on the rise. The Mintel Global Beauty Trends 2018 report cites awareness as one of the reasons: “Consumers today are doing more research and reading up on the products and services they buy more than ever before.” As climate change and sustainable living become increasing concerns, it’s become a focal point for many consumers. In the last decade alone, The Vegan Society has seen a 360 percent uptake in veganism. Vegan shoes, vegan clothing, vegan diet—and vegan beauty.
According to the 2017 Google Beauty Trends Report, the vegan skincare category has grown by 83 percent in the past few years, which makes sense. Why would you want animal ingredients in your beauty if you don’t put them in your body?
Some animal-derived beauty ingredients are obvious—honey, beeswax, lanolin, milk, yogurt, collagen, snail secretion (now popular in Korean beauty products), animal-hair makeup brushes. But others—carmine, derived from insect carapace, which gives lipstick a red color; guanine, from fish scales, which gives eye shadow its shimmer; sodium tallowate or beef fat, in soap—are not. As more consumers embrace plant-based diets, or cut back on carnivorous consumption, they will want to be more aware of hidden animal ingredients in their skincare, haircare, makeup and personal care products—especially where they may least expect to find them.
Look for third-party certification from the nonprofit Vegan Action and The Vegan Society, or look on the PETA website. But keep in mind that some vegan brands, like SpaRitual, Inika, Dr. Bronner’s and Annemarie Borlind don’t carry a third-party certification.