Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Vegan Skin Care Line: Shankara Naturals Review

If you follow a lot of vegan profiles on Instagram, then you’re probably no stranger to Shankara Naturals. I haven’t heard of them until I saw one of their ads on the ‘gram and after persistent viewings scroll after scroll after scroll, I decided to click “Shop Now” and look a bit more into their company. Before you say anything, no they did not send me anything. They actually offer a sample pack that’s really convenient for vegan bloggers and other commitment-phobes like me…for $10 and FREE shipping (hallelujar). So I added it to my cart and actually checked out (the latter of which is rare).

Shankara1

You can pick from three lines and I opted for the one meant for people with oily skin, called Kapha. As listed on their site, the others are: Vata (Dry) and Pitta (Combination/Sensitive).

This travel pack comes with three tiny glass bottles about the length of your thumb and the width of your pinky. You get: Anti-Age Serum, Balance Treatment Oil and Muscle Release Oil. You also get two tiny jars and one larger jar. The two include the Balance Moisturizer and a Microcrystal Exfoliant. The larger jar is the Purifying Cleanser.

Shankara2

I can tell you right off the bat that the best product out of all of these is the anti-age serum…unfortunately I found out that while this serum is cruelty-free, it’s not vegan (womp womp).

Actually, I learned that not all of their cruelty-free skincare products are vegan or cruelty-free. They spell it out in their FAQs:

Where do most of your ingredients come from? We source ingredients from all over the world, and manufacture here in the US.

Do you test on animals?No we do not. All products are PETA cruelty-free approved.

Are Shankara products Vegan? All products are certified vegan by PETA except that contain honey powder, yogurt and/or milk protein. These products are: Deep Cleanse Treatment, Anti-Age Serum, Moisturizing Mask, Dead Sea Salt Scrub and Allure Mineral Bath Salts.

Are Shankara products organic? We use many organic and wild crafted ingredients.

The balance oil though and the balance moisturizer are both fantastic! The serum (the one time I used it without realizing it wasn’t vegan) was actually really nice, and was tacky at first application but left my skin feeling taut. Now I’m curious to try their other serums, and with the right coupon, I just might!

Question of the Day

What new skincare products have you tried? What are you on the hunt for? I’m currently looking for amazing serum!

Blog Signature

 

Friday Face Off, Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Friday Face Off: Facial Cleansers (Soap)

We all want squeaky clean faces without hearing squeaks from harmed animals. With that said, today, we are starting off our FIRST EVER VCF Friday Face Off with facial soaps! What could be more fitting for a Friday Face Off than that, okurr?

FaceOff1-6AN

Let’s start with one of my tried and true favorite brands: Asili Naturals. If you’re new to them, Asili Naturals is a plant-based skincare line that, unlike others on the market, is so crazy affordable AND is actually truly plant-based. Unlike Origins or other brands that claim to be plant-based, Asili Naturals uses only the best and you can tell; not just when you use the product, but also when you take a look at the ingredient list.

It’s ALWAYS (I’d bet my life on it) whole ingredients. I mean check it out. All that’s in this Asili Naturals Face Soap (how cool is that–it’s handmade) is coconut oil, purified water, castor oil, sodium hydroxide, apricot oil and black seed oil shea butter. Ya’ll. That’s literally 6. Count ’em. SIX ingredients.

FaceOff1-5AN

I know what you’re thinking. Sodium hydroxide? That’s the one that’s unlike the others on that list. Well if you want to literally clean your face, sodium hydroxide is necessary. It’s a safe chemical agent used for saponification, or in layman terms, it’s used to dissociate dirt from water. The rest, like the coconut oil, apricot oil and all else are there to treat your face to the best of oil yummyness. I usually follow this up with some sort of facial oil and then slather my body with Asili Naturals body butter after.

FaceOff1-2Dove

Let’s move on to the more commercial product, Dove Soap. TBH, I love Dove Soap commercials. They’re seriously so convincing, and what’s more convincing is that doctors often recommend it as a facial soap to people suffering with acne. And I’m not going to lie, I’ve seen the results: it works…that or my friend just has amazing genetics. I’m willing to bet on the latter. But when I really thought about it, I began to wonder–are they cruelty-free? Are they vegan? What’s in this soap? So I looked into it.

FaceOff1-3Dove

14 ingredients, guys. FOUR. TEEN. That’s a LOT. And if you look closely at them, not one of them is a naturally occurring or plant-based substance. They’re all chemicals. When I realized this, my eyes about popped out of my head. Worst yet (sorry Dove), not one of those ingredients is an oil or a moisturizer to really treat and calm your face after ridding it of dirt.

Ok, no I lied. This is the worst yet. Dove is NOT vegan OR cruelty-free. So using Dove is like using soap that was used to torture a super innocent animal that thought it was just getting cleaned. Nope.

Verdict? Asili Naturals wins! AND it’s Bloo Certified.

Screen Shot 2017-10-13 at 6.29.52 AM

What’s your favorite facial cleanser or soap to use? Share with us below! Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Blog Signature

 

 

Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Healthy Deodorant

UPDATE: I’ve since learned that Native Deoderant is not vegan, because it contains beeswax. Depending on your restrictions, you may or may not care for that ingredient, but just a heads up.

Healthy deodorant is so hard to come by. There are the ones that are aluminum-free that last for a good three minutes before I have to re-apply or find myself fanning the sweat out of my armpits–not the best look at your job interview.

Now can go into your interview with your game face on AND smell good with my favorite deodorant of all time. I tried some from Tom’s, Lavanila and other cruelty-free and vegan brands and this is by far the best one. Native Cosmetics even has deodorant for those with sensitive skin.

Native Deoderant

In my experience, it lasts 3X longer. I usually sweat just sitting in one place and find that I don’t have to reapply until I get home and shower or until the next day. But like all the other healthy ones, this is also aluminum-free and their awesome scents last almost all day long. I often catch myself thinking, man what smells so good? It’s me guys. It’s me. Do yourself a favor and order. Best of all, you’re supporting a small-business.

Native D Packaging

You can order here! #notsponsored but let them know I sent you! What is your favorite deodorant? Some work different on others, so maybe Tom’s or Lavanila IS your favorite! Unfortunately, they stunk for me, pun intended.

Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Cruelty-Free Face Lotion with SPF

If you’re anything like me, you’re paranoid about having sunscreen, even on the snowiest and gloomiest of days (which really are the days when you should pile on the sunscreen)! Just like in my search for all other vegan beauty and vegan skincare products, this one was just as long and arduous. So, in comes Ulta and a resourceful blog. Logical Beauty has a really great reference list of vegan and cruelty-free brands at Ulta. Although Formula 10.0.6 is not on the list, I’ve done my research and learned that IS in fact, cruelty-free. This lotion is an affordable and cruelty-free option to avoid a leather-face, cause we are vegan after all (get it? leather…no?)

Formula Face Lotion 2

Picture Perfect Day by Formula 10.0.6 truly is lightweight and hydrating without making you look like one of the putty men from Power Rangers (ya’ll ’90s children understand).

What I was especially looking for is a vegan and cruelty-free product, of course, but one that’s affordable. The skincare I’ve liked in the past was $60+ but with a vegan lifestyle also comes sustainability. Smart choices, ya’ll! I mean we have to save up for front-row seats to Beyonce #amirite?

Formula Face Lotion 1

What is your favorite vegan/cruelty-free face lotion with SPF?

Blog Signature

Vegan and Cruelty Free Beauty

Top 5 Vegan & Cruelty Free Skincare Brands

1. Asili Naturals

When I say this company is going to take over the world, I don’t think I’ve ever meant anything more. I mean, they. are. CRUSHING IT. Founder and CEO Trenise Watson makes these products in her own home with the help of her head chemist Dr. Moe, literally a doctor, ya’ll. What you’re getting is the purest of all that’s good for your skin.

Asili Lotions

I first found Asili Naturals at Veggie Fest 2017 in Illinois. I bought the Shea and Lavender Body Butter, and let me tell you that angels sang while pigs flew because I NEVER thought I’d find a lotion as good as this. This was after trying numerous, I mean so many I can’t keep it straight, lotions. From Honest Company to independent brands, nothing sunk into my skin or moisturized it quite like Asili Naturals products, or smell as good.

Asili Coconut Body Butter

After this godly experience with the Asili Naturals Shea Butter lotion, I had to try their Coconut Body Butter. I mean you’d think they can’t hit a home run twice, right? WRONG. They did. It has little exfoliants that disappear instantly when it hits your skin, so it’s like exfoliating without drying your skin. I’m a big time fan guys. Give it a shot and I can guarantee you’ll feel the same. exact. way.

2. Acure

Acure Serum

I won’t lie, the Lancome Advanced Génifique Youth Activating Concentrate was my holy grail. Since Lancome is sold in China (China REQUIRES all of their skin care and makeup brands to test on animals–WTH?), I no longer support them or other such companies. Ugh. This is where things got rough, and bumpy. I literally got pimples testing things out for you guys (and myself) to match the insanely amazing quality of the Lancome serum. I went from Pacifica (more to come) to various oils, and so far, Acure beats them all. The CGF Oil Free Serum takes a while to sink into your skin, but goes on clean and you wake up without residue on your face–that’s a winner!

3. Native

I stink. I’ll admit it. I have a sweat problem. I can sit for hours at work, and even though all I’m doing is typing, I get up and see pit stains. I mean, come on! Do any of you have the same problem? Because if you do I found your new BFFF.

Native Deodorant

So I tried deodorant after deodorant, and let me tell you, the journey was a rough, and wet one. Native Deodorant is the best by far, and it doesn’t include aluminum or any of those other nasty ingredients that sinks into your body. When I bought them, they only had 3 or 4 scents (Coconut & Vanilla and the Lavender are fab), but now they have 8! I started out with the sample pack which I HIGHLY recommend.

Do you guys realize how thin the skin in your armpits is? It’s like a direct pathway into your body, so you want to wipe on only the best.

4. Pacifica

Screen Shot 2017-09-23 at 4.15.15 PM
Photo c/o: http://www.pacificabeauty.com

Speaking of smelling nice, Pacifica has some of the best smelling lotions and perfumes without being laden with chemicals. Unlike with Soap & Glory (below) you can rest assured that everything and anything you buy from Pacifica is 100% vegan and cruelty free. To be honest, their skin care (like SPF lotion and face products) are lackluster but their lotions, perfumes and even their lip gloss are VCF.com certified! If you’re reading this now, you can get 3 perfumes for $50 and they’re normally $22 each! Just choose the three scents you want, then enter the code mypicks at checkout. #notsponsored #luckyfind

5. Soap & Glory

S&G Lotion

While not all Soap & Glory products are vegan and cruelty-free (because they can’t guarantee their ingredients), a majority of their line is! Their lotions smell oh-so delicious. I added this brand to the list because they’re easily accessible! You can find them at Target and Ulta, and not only that, they work really well. Did I say they smell good, too? Yummy. Veganswapsie.com has an awesome list of what is vegan and cruelty-free from Soap & Glory.

What are your favorite VCF skincare products? Which of these would you try first? If you like supporting woman-owned small businesses, give Asili Naturals a try!

Blog Signature