Although I’m more of what you call a ‘flexitarian’ when it comes to my diet, lifestyle-wise, I like to buy or consume as many vegan-friendly products as possible. I am, by no means, here to preach, cos GURL I’m not perfect! But I do have some rather stellar recommendations for vegan products I’ve tried and loved so you can invest beyond Veganuary. From cosmetics to cakes and everything in between, here are my fave vegan bits right now: feel free to leave yours below too!
Top Vegan and Cruelty-Free Beauty Products
*Just a wee note before I start with this, and most of y’all might know this already so ignore me, but there is a difference between vegan and cruelty-free, and that’s where some companies get ya. For instance, a range of moisturiser can be vegan (i.e contain no animal products) BUT it can be tested on animals. The reverse is also true, there are a number of CF products I use that may include things like beeswax from time to time, but aren’t tested on animals. These products below are neither tested on animals nor contain any animal products.
Vegan and Cruelty-Free Skincare
The Ordinary (Deciem)
My top top top brand that I will always recommend when it comes to vegan skincare is The Ordinary. The prices are reasonable, and the ingredients are pretty much raw. This is great if, for example, you’re looking for something odourless that doesn’t involve chemicals used for colouring the solutions or scenting them. It’s good to read up on which products will suit your skin, but here are my favourites to get you started:
- If you’re prone to spots: Salicylic Acid 2% Solution: unclogs pores and targets areas prone to breakouts. I use this every now and then on my T-zone
- If your skin is dry: Natural Moisturising Factors + HA: one of my favourite moisturisers to be honest! It’s odourless, easy to apply and very reliable. I apply morning and night.
- Fighting signs of age: ‘Buffet’ and Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5: both are good for helping the skin keep hydrated and looking smooth
- At night: Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% : this baby chemically exfoliates the skin overnight and is meant to restore the skin’s luminosity. I use this after removing my makeup and before moisturiser at night
The Ordinary is available in-store, or online at sites like Feel Unique.
Vegan and Cruelty-Free Makeup
British-born brand Revolution has grown from strength to strength over the years, but I feel it’s not shouted too much about its cruelty-free status (which it should!). Almost 80% of the products are now vegan, and the best way to shop their site is to select the ‘vegan’ category on the left-hand sidebar of any page on the site (or look for the green ‘V’).
Fave product: Their conceal and hydrate foundation. It retails at a fabulously affordable price, comes in almost 50 shades and I use it as both concealer and foundation, it works beautifully.
Least fave product: Their eyeshadow palettes (especially I Heart Revolution) are not as pigmented as others I own, so can be a bit disappointing.
KVD Vegan Beauty
Recently re-branded after separating from tattoo artist founder Kat Von D, KVD Vegan Beauty is definitely one of my favourite brands (for now). The eyeshadow palettes are reliable, the brushes are brilliant and I love the artistry accessories too. Now that they are going it alone, I notice they’re discontinuing their perfumes (which I loved!), but as the name suggests it seems they will be caring on with their vegan values.
Fave product: The Alchemist palette (which I hear will be discontinued so snag it up quick!), and the shade and light contour palette: a solid cream contour.
Least fave product: The ink liner is a bit disappointing, to say the least. It dries out very quickly!
If you’re in the UK, KVD Vegan Beauty is only available in Debenhams.
* KVD are now owned by Kendo, who are cruelty-free, their previous parent company was LVMH, who test on animals.
If you’re in the UK and looking for a British brand, Stargazer is a great option. They’re completely cruelty-free and have a clearly labelled vegan section that includes everything from hair dye to mascara, to brush cleaner, to neon eyeshadow. The brand is all about colour, and that’s what I love about it. Being kooky and out there doesn’t need to take president over the animals y’all!
Fave product: Their neon eye dust is EVERYTHANG.
Least fave product: The hair mascara didn’t work as well on my hair.
If you’re a fan of products with a vibrant twist, Lime Crime is a good option. I’ve loved their velvetines (liquid lipsticks) for years, but I’ve also invested in a number of their products I really like. Although I really stan their products right now, I do have to address their controversial past, as I am aware of it/ owned products in the midst of this, and have decided to remain a customer. The reason I’ve placed this on my list is because they’ve been raving about their cruelty-free elements since their inception in 2008.
I usually buy Lime Crime from their official site as they have really big reductions, but if you don’t want to pay for shipping try Feel Unique.
Lime Crime experienced a website security breach in 2014, which meant a number of customers had their details stolen. Most other controversies have been surrounding the founder Doe Deere, who I know has been under fire a few times. The brand is now under new management and are very much keeping their noses clean.
Fave product: I have so many! But I would have to say their velvetines, plushies and their venus palettes.
Least fave product: I still like it, but the bushy brow pen is a little weak, I wish it had more pigment to it so help me achieve the look of super bushy brows.
Jeffree Star Cosmetics
I’m quickly realising that I’m talking about some often controversial figures here, but behind Jeffree Star is a really great cosmetics line. He can be a marmite character, but I do love his liquid lipstick formulas and his highly pigmented eyeshadows. All products have been vegan from day one too.
Fave product: All of the velour liquid lipsticks… never known a lipstick to last so long!
Least fave product: The glosses. I’m not really into coloured glosses anyway but I didn’t feel like they made much of an impact.
Jeffree Star Cosmetics are available from Beauty Bay.
Vegan and Cruelty-Free Haircare
Based in Canada, Design.Me products are bringing some unique formulas to the market and I’m here for it. Let’s get to the all-important bit first: the ingredients. You won’t find any harmful chemicals, parabens, sulphates or gluten, everything is 100% cruelty-free and vegan, woo! I tried out their range because my hair is fairly fine and can lack volume, so the Puff.ME volumising powder was great. It comes in travel-size packaging, so fits snuggly in my handbag, and it provides instant lift.
Their Fab.ME leave-in treatment is also great if my hair needs a bit of TLC! I use it soon after a salon treatment when my hair has been dyed so that it retains its colour for as long as possible and protects against heat (especially if I’m blowdrying). It’s so simple to use, just a spritz on damp hair and a comb through before drying.
Design.Me is available at Sally Beauty
I find sometimes it’s very hard to find vegan and cruelty-free haircare on a budget as it’s still not widely regarded as a concern. Just as we’re rethinking the use of plastic shampoo/conditioner packaging, we should also be thinking about the chemicals and the CF status of our haircare. Maui Moisture is a great alternative if you’re looking for something that is under the tenner mark.
Stocked in Boots, these vegan products smell fabulous and come in such a wide range, so you can pick anything from shea butter to bamboo fibre to volcanic ash (yes, volcanic ash).
You can purchase Maui Moisture from Boots.
My Favourite Ethical and Vegan Food and Drink
I mean, I could write a whole essay on my favourite vegan foods but for now, I’m going to stick with two products I’ve tried recently that I really want to shout about!
Plant-based sweet treats are definitely harder to come by than your standard snacks, but Oggs are worth it. I have so many good things to say about these cakes, but first of all, they’re TASTY AF. So moist, and come in a range of flavours from lemon to chocolate fudge to salted caramel *dribbles*.
The products are manufactured ethically in the UK, with ingredients from local suppliers being cruelty-free too. Now onto the packaging, which is recyclable and compostable, and also made from recyclable materials!! Lastly, this company has GOALZ. Not only do they want to be using renewable energy, but they’re also looking to be a 0 waste organisation by 2021. This is a brand I can really get behind!
Oggs Cakes are available in Waitrose and Sainsbury’s, but you can also track down your nearest stockist here.
Lost Sheep Coffee
Who can function in the morning before their first cup of coffee? Naht me. But to be honest, coffee can sometimes be a very wasteful product so I’ve been on the lookout for something that’s sustainable. Okay, I get it, why include coffee in this list (because all coffee is technically vegan right??!) but for me, it’s more about looking for a double whammy of environmentally-friendly food and drink.
I’m repping Lost Sheep Coffee because it hails from Canterbury, my uni town! Although they have a few locations in and around Kent, it’s the pods I really want to talk about because they’re compatible with Nespresso machines, and the pods are compostable, 100% plastic-free. Also, I really feel like it’s all about supporting independently owned businesses right now, especially if they have initiatives like this.
Lost Sheep Coffee is available online.
So there you have it! All of my favourite vegan products! I’d love to hear some of yours below.