Animal Cruelty Free Make-up

I don’t usually wear makeup (maybe only for special occasions) but thought that I should write a piece on cruelty free and animal product free cosmetics for those who do wear makeup and want to use more ethical brands.



-NEEK skin organics: Lipstick made on a base of avocado oil, jojoba oil and shea butter that comes in a unique bamboo case. I have the Friday on My Mind which is a deep pink. It is the only lipstick I have and it is a versatile colour that can be used for day or night wear. [100% vegan. On Choose Cruelty Free (CCF) list]

-Hanami [100% vegan. On CCF list]

-VonBlu: From looking online I like Riva which is a versatile pinky brown colour [Some vegan. On CCF list]

-Ere Perez [Some vegan. On CCF list]


Lip balm

This is technically not considered makeup but some people like to apply lip balm to moisturise prior to applying lipstick so I decided to include it.

-HURRAW!: Have many different flavours [100% vegan. On CCF list]

-The Physic Garden: Have 3 different types [100% vegan. On CCF list]

-Hanami: Have 3 different types (pomegranate, spearmint, unflavoured)


Nail polish

-Kester Black: Offer a wide selection of colours. Colours I like from looking online are Petra (vintage pink) & Quartz (grayish purple) [100% vegan. On CCF list]




-Hanami (choice of waterproof and non-waterproof)


Various makeup products

-INIKA: Available at Myer stores [100% vegan. On CCF list]

-Elate cosmetics: Use bamboo and glass packaging [100% vegan. PETA & Leaping Bunny certified cruelty free]

-MOMMA [100% vegan. On CCF list]


With so many ethical makeup brands available, there is no need to buy cosmetics tested on animals or those that contain animal-derived products. Let us make the world a kinder place for animals, one small choice at a time.


Common Animal Derived Ingredients to Avoid (in ‘cosmetics’ & food)

Hidden animal products are in many cosmetic products and foods, and most people are unaware of this. Below are several animal derived ingredients, as well as suggested plant alternatives. Note that the source of some of them may surprise or disgust you.


*Some ingredients can be derived from plants or animals. If a source is from plants, there may be a bracketed origin statement in the ingredients list, e.g. glycerin (vegetable-derived)



Source: Animal fat (commonly by-products of soap manufacture)

Use: Moisturiser

Products: Soaps, moisturisers

Alternatives: Vegetable glycerin (can be derived from soy or coconut oil)


Stearic acid

Source: Often fatty substance from pig stomachs

Use: Variety of uses (hardens soap, binds and thickens moisturisers)

Products: Deodorants, moisturisers (lotions, creams), cosmetics, shampoos

Alternatives: Vegetable fats, coconut, cocoa butter


Squalene/squalene oil

Source: Extract from shark livers

Use: Moisturiser

Products: Creams, lotions

Alternatives: Olive oil-squalene can be made from olives, wheat germ oil, rice bran oil, amaranth seeds


Hyaluronic acid

Source: Protein commonly extracted from rooster combs (on the head)

Use: Anti-aging, hydrating

Products: Creams, serums, masks, lip products

Alternatives: Hyadisine, plant oils, can made by producing enzymes from a bacteria-based biofermentation process


Carmine/cochineal/carminic acid

Source: Red pigment from the crushed cochineal beetles. It takes 70,000 beetles to make just 1 pound

Use: Red dye

Products: Lipstick, blush, eyeshadow, even food

Alternatives: Beet juice, alkanet root, annatto extract



Source: Product of the oil glands of sheep, extracted from wool

Use: Moisturiser

Products: Lip products, creams

Alternatives: Plant oils (coconut, olive) & butters (shea, coconut)



Source: Protein from ground horns, hooves, and hair of animals

Use: Fills in gaps in damaged hair shaft, treat weak & brittle hair (Keratin is found in your hair & skin)

Products: Hair & nail care products

Alternatives: Almond oil, soy protein, keratin protein can be synthesized in a lab



Source: Protein derived from boiling skin, tendons, ligaments and/or bones of animals in water

Use: Sticky adhesive

Products: Shampoo, face masks, candy, marshmallows, yoghurts, capsule coating of vitamins

Alternatives: Carrageenan, agar agar, fruit pectin, dextrins, locust bean gum



Source: Crushed fish scales

Use: Sparkly, shimmering properties

Products: Nail polish, eye shadow, skin lightening creams

Alternatives: Leguminous plants, synthetic pearl, aluminium & bronze particles