What does it mean to be vegan? While veganism usually refers to food, it’s much more than just a diet. Vegans do their very best to create a world where no animals are harmed in service to humans.
That’s why there is much more to veganism than simply controlling what we decide to put into our mouths. Veganism is a lifestyle that can apply to endless choices we make in our daily lives including the clothes we wear and the beauty products we use. How can we incorporate more veganism into our lives beyond what goes on our plate? Here are the top 5 cruelty free products on the market that go way beyond the food industry!
Some of the beauty industry’s most popular products have been tested on animals. In this gruesome process, our furry friends spend their entire lives in cages and are forced to undergo painful chemical experiments. Non-vegan hair care products can also contain hidden ingredients that are derived from animals. For example, Lanolin is a common shampoo ingredient used to moisturize hair, but it was actually derived from oil found on sheep’s wool.
Pai Shau prides themselves in making sure that no animal was harmed in the making of any of their amazing hair care products. The brand opts for natural additives such as amino acids derived from rice, green tea extract and ylang ylang to replenish your hair with supple hydration and heal strands from years of damage. Check out Pai Shau’s fantastic gift sets to achieve gorgeous, healthy hair without causing any cruelty towards animals.
- SipWell’s Stainless Steel Drinking Straws
Plastics straws are used and disposed of at especially alarming rates. For example, in the United States only, 500 million plastic straws are used per day. Although it may seem harmless to grab a straw with your iced coffee, it can end up causing serious damage to wildlife. Too small to be recycled, the straws we throw away end up in our oceans. Due to their small size, sea critters often mistake thin plastic straws for food, leading to suffocation and death. If you care about adorable sea creatures such as turtles, penguins, dolphins, sea lions and whales – you may want to stop using plastic straws.
However, just because plastic straws cause danger to animals doesn’t mean you need to ditch straws altogether. Instead of using a normal plastic straw, consider going cruelty-free by purchasing a set of stainless steel straws instead. Not only do they look fabulous paired alongside a fruity cocktail or smoothie, but they are also easy to clean, reusable and most importantly – eco-friendly!
- Faux Leather Vegan Shoes
Leather, fur, exotic skins and other animal-derived material is commonly used in the fashion industry, especially when it comes to shoes. Vegans who refuse to have steak for dinner probably won’t feel comfortable wearing boots made out of cow skin, either. This is because unfortunately, the global leather industry alone slaughters over a billion animals each year. However, just because you want to say no to animal cruelty doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice quality fashion.
As veganism has become more popular, it is easy to replace animal-derived clothing with cruelty-free materials. For example, a number of shoe manufacturers have started to make vegan-friendly kicks by using faux leather and suede by using polyurethane, microfiber, and other man-made ingredients. When you’re looking for new boots this fall, consider buying from a cruelty-free brand.
- Cruelty Free Bedding
A bed is a place that should provide us with comfort and peace before signing off at the end of a long day. However, when you find out that innocent animals were harmed in the making of your luxurious bed, it might keep you up at night. Most pillows are stuffed with feathers that were forcefully plucked off of birds such as geese, chickens and ducks. This gruesome process is especially painful for these poor animals. That’s why vegans and animal lovers might feel better choosing cruelty free pillows.
Instead of using down which is made from bleached animal feathers, cruelty free pillows use natural resources such as organic cotton, buckwheat husks and other types of eco friendly memory foam. Not only can these pillows give you a proper night sleep, but your conscious will get its eight hours as well knowing that no birdies were harmed in the making of your bedding.
- Vegan Wine
When you think about opening up a bottle of delicious red wine, you would probably never imagine that it contains anything animal-related. The truth is, not all wine is totally cruelty free. The reason why not all wines are vegan or even vegetarian has to do with the process in which they were made. Through a technique called fining, protein molecules in wine are sifted out using a variety of fining agents. Egg whites, casein (a milk protein), and gelatin (animal protein) are all never common substances used to remove tiny molecules that can make wine look “hazy.”
Fortunately, as veganism became more and more prominent over the years, winemakers have come up with other ways to filter their wine. Today, winemakers use non-animal derived ingredients such as activated charcoal or a clay-bases substance called bentonite. Some wineries choose not to fine their products at all, resulting in unfiltered wine.
Vegans should always make sure their wine wasn’t made using any animal byproducts before popping open the bottle.