Cruelty Free Beauty: How I Started

I stopped applying makeup on my pets’ faces a while back. They looked like ‘ladies of the night’ frankly.Noor Zeb

Kidding obviously, because I have very high sanitary standards and would not contaminate my makeup with those furry beasts.

I started small. I have now been using body soap cakes for the past 15 years now, 9 out of 10 times apply toners with my palms or spray them on and rare-never use makeup wipes. I generally use rags a lot. (NB: You have to apply Tarte’s Tingling toner with a cotton ball or your fingers will burn off!)

Now for the animals. This is a very recent start for me. I know I had to at some point and that time is NOW.

I had to literally force myself to ‘see’ in my mind’s eye an animal in a testing lab in those cages. ( I still eat meat…so…)

While I am not a fan of how makeup can being returned in the US  ( landfill ) I do love more and more US brands are marching towards the leaping bunny logo.

Check below links. The best thing is we already own and love most of these brands. Yaaay!

https://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/cruelty-free-sephora-brands/

https://www.crueltyfreekitty.com/cruelty-free-drugstore-brands/

https://clique.adelaidereview.com.au/article/kind-cosmetics-all-you-need-to-know-about-cruelty-free-makeup/

The Leaping Bunny Logo is the only internationally recognized symbol guaranteeing consumers that no new animal tests were used in the development of any product displaying it. The Logo can be seen on packaging, advertising, and websites for cosmetics and household products around the world. 


A lot of people are critical when a brand calls itself CF but the parent company is not (Loreal) OR ingredients that were acquired from 3rd party suppliers are not CF (say Unilever’s supply chain). It’s a minefield.


I apply the gym philosophy ‘start by trying to run atleast 2 miles without stopping while keeping the goal 5 miles’. Baby steps. Also I don’t over analyze because that usually stops me from starting a journey.

Example ‘go ALL CF or not atall’. ‘Go CF and vegetarian or not atall.’  I will fail with such hardline boundaries and I don’t want to fail.

I am not going Vegan. As an Indian Hindu woman ‘ghee’ and dairy were drilled into my psyche. More than that I am going to be lusting after oysters and sushi for a long while more and I can not resist a plate of cheese and nuts.

Anyway I am looking at my makeup first. That for me is an easier switch before I look at skincare and toiletries.

Some of my go-to brands are questionable. MAC, Urban Decay, Maybelline and Loreal.

Other than the MAC Fix+ <sob> and OMG the Urban Decay GrindHouse sharpener the others are easily swapped.

Actually I will give up the Fix+, with both hands, before I give that sharpener up. Sorry bunny.

And then there is high end. This where the struggle is real. I really like Shu Uemura, YSL and Dior. YSL fragrance and lips, Dior face and Shu Uemura cleansing oils and their makeup aesthetic. Oh over-priced Shu Uemura cleansing oil, how I love thee.

I will give up this cleansing oil before I give up my Urban Decay sharpener.

Sorry bunny, but not really.

So my CF makeup start is fairly easy.

  1. I don’t have a vast collection so fewer traps.
  2. I don’t have strong brand loyalty with most makeup companies 🙂
  3. Most of the CF brands listed I already own and throughly enjoy.
  4. Questionable products from MAC and Maybelline I am going to use up and not re-purchase.

Oh MAC! I am literally getting teary eyed here. It’s like giving up my makeup security blanket. When all fails MAC is always there for me with their easily identifiable shade range. NC 40 is all I know 😦

My $80 Viseart palette will be with me for a while. I LOVE Viseart, unhappy bunny and all. But when I say I set small goals I mean it.

While I will not repurchase Viseart I will not guilt myself all the time I am going to use the palette I already own. I like their mattes and REALLY love their shimmers. Subtle and muted and age appropriate for me.

My dream of buying the Viseart Dark Mattes has been put to rest because I aint buying it.

What about Pat McGrath* and Huda Beauty’s Desert Dusk ? The answer is sadly NO.  I will sneak in a cheeky PmcG swatch in Sephora just so I know I have touched a PM palette and experienced its heavenly wonder.

Update: as per Pat McGrath website:

Are PAT McGRATH LABS products cruelty-free?
A: Pat McGrath Labs does not test our products or ingredients on animals.

What else ? I am trying to rack my brains to see if I have left something out. I know I am going to have to print the CF list out and paste it near my vanity. If not I know I will forget and get blinded by a Nars launch.

And oh, I don’t care how much of an activitist you are I AM going to re-purchase that Urban Decay Grind House sharpener.

Maybe they don’t sell that sharpener in China…