The Beauty Desk
The latest beauty news & views, direct from PRIMPED HQ!
Vegan Beauty. A Beginner’s Guide.
Thu, 1 November 2012 11:20AM
Happy World Vegan Day! I hope you’ve duly eaten your scrambled tofu, slipped on your Stella McCartney wedges, and grabbed a soy chai (hold the honey!) en route to work. Not to mention doused yourself in all sorts of beautiful vegan beauty treats. But more on that in a bit.
So the reason I’m blogging about veganism today is that it’s a subject incredibly close to my heart. And stomach … and wardrobe. I’ve been vegan for about six years now – an extension of my long-time vegetarianism, and a natural one at that, once I began to research how our animal friends are treated in a variety of industries – from meat to leather to eggs to dairy. Yes, even the so-called ‘ethical’ ones. I won’t go into the gory details, but if you want to know more, read The Ethics of What We Eat or Skinny Bitch, or watch Earthlings. Warning: Many tissue boxes will be needed.
When I went vegan, which was not really so long ago, it still seemed like a bit of a wacky, zany, fringey thing to do. But since then, it has become quite a mainstream trend. Not to mention a celebrity-loved cause. Just some vegans stepping out on the red carpet (in pleather shoes, naturally) are Ellen DeGeneres and Portia De Rossi, Jessica Chastain, Alicia Silverstone, Carrie Underwood, Russell Brand, Lea Michele (below), Bill and Chelsea Clinton and Olivia Wilde. Natalie Portman has flitted between vegetarianism and a total plant-based diet, while Anne Hathaway (like Chelsea before her) recently got married in a vegan ceremony.
I won’t lie, veganism can be a little challenging at times. Dinner out is sometimes a struggle, and a bore (if I eat another mushroom risotto, I think I’ll scream), but if I call in advance most chefs are happy to cook up something special for me. The plus? It’s usually chock-full of veggies – or, in the case of dessert, fruit – so eating out is rarely unhealthy. Unless, ahem, I order my veggies in the form of French Fries.
Vegan clothes, however, are a cinch. Fur is a no-brainer-no to most people (thank goodness), and wool and silk aren’t life necessities. The accessory element is the tricky one, as leather is 99%-everywhere … but if I fossick around the likes of Payless, Target and Zara I usually find a good faux-leather design, or even a cute wedge with a fabric upper. And with all the money I save by buying el cheapo shoes, I treat myself to a pair of Stella McCartney shoes or boots, and a bag, every couple of years. Ah Stella, I worship at her animal-loving shrine.
So, onto beauty. I’m not technically vegan when it comes to skincare, haircare and makeup. I made the decision that, while in this line of work, I couldn’t realistically stop testing non-vegan products. Of which there are many. Think anything with honey, beeswax, milk derivatives and lanolin.
However, I have a super-soft spot for those beauties that are totally cruelty-free. And, it being World Vegan Day and all, I wanted to share some of my faves with you …
Hair: Pureology (call 1300 386 421 for salon information) is divine – especially the Precious Oil range; I also have a lot of time for David Babaii, the man himself and his haircare (available from pharmacies), which is about to be relaunched (more on that in a few weeks).
Makeup: Some of the more natural brands (the ones you buy at health food stores) tend to be vegan – and I particularly like Ere Perez (02 9130 3582) and the mineral-based Inika (1800 808 993). Both are also local beauties. The coolest vegan makeup brand by far is Urban Decay; it’s not available in any Australian stores but it’s easy enough to buy online. As for how to apply it all, you can’t go past the synethetic-bristled Eco Tools – they’re not only cheap, but also brilliant (find them at Priceline).
Body: I’m beyond devo that 100% Pure is no longer stocked at Kit, but you can always rely on Lush (1300 5874 28) for all sorts of body-loving goodness – such as the cult bath bombs.
Skin: Sukin and Botani are two lovely, all-natural, cruelty-free brands – find them at Priceline and selected pharmacies. If you want more of an anti-ageing hit, look no further than the stellar Dr Dennis Gross Skincare (at Mecca Cosmetica).
PS – Don’t forget, a vegan diet itself has great skin benefits. For me, it has infused my skin with glow, whitened my eyes, strengthened my hair, helped keep my weight in check (even throughout two pregnancies), and it has generally made me feel like a happier, healthier being. I don’t mean to sound naff, but veganism tunes you into nature and gives you a lovely feeling of balance. When you do it properly, that is. As in, eating veggies, legumes, the like. Not hot chips and bowl after bowl of pasta. Nor too many meat substitutes, which are highly processed. If you’re interested in trying it out, I’d just stress that you should see a nutritionist first for guidance, and any supplements you might need (for me, I boost my B vitamins with spirulina). Oh and good-to-know: dark chocolate is usually vegan. Lucky that, seeing as I eat a chunk of the stuff every single day!
What about you, Primpers? Anyone else vegan?
Or do you have any questions about it I can answer?
And how much do you love dark chocolate?
Posted by: Katrina Lawrence