Everything You Need to Know About Cruelty-Free Skin Care Products in 2019
Your skin is your biggest asset! As you age, it's essential to take excellent care of your skin. After all, it is with you your whole life! When it comes to skincare, using quality products gives you the confidence that what you put on your skin isn't doing more harm than good. From cleansing and moisturizing to choosing the right exfoliator, be sure you know what ingredients are in your products. Cruelty-free skin care products are a great place to start when selecting what you use in your skincare routine. However, not all cruelty-free products are the same! Here's our guide to finding the best cruelty-free skincare products in 2019.
Understanding Cruelty-FreeDid you know that there is no single, legal definition for "cruelty-free" when it comes to the skin care industry? That's why it's important to do your research into the ingredients in your products. It's also critical to investigate the origin of those ingredients when choosing your skin care products. Because the term isn't regulated, manufacturers can use the phrase "cruelty-free" to describe almost any aspect of their products. "Cruelty-free" can refer to:
- Only the finished product. This means the process to produce the finished product uses cruelty-free harvesting and production methods. However, this might not cover the harvesting and production methods of individual ingredients from outside suppliers.
- No animal testing using final products. In many cases, you'll see the term "not tested on animals" to promote a lack of animal testing. However, this doesn't always include ingredient testing from different manufacturers or suppliers before a product becomes finalized.
It's Not About the LabelYou might think that products with the "cruelty-free" label on the package are the only "legit" cruelty-free products. But, it's not always about the label! To get that label, a manufacturer has to spend money on a licensing fee and go through an approval process. Remember, "cruelty-free" isn't an FDA certification. However, products can receive a cruelty-free label by paying for it and qualifying through testing. Sometimes manufacturers pass on the cost of that label or certification process to consumers. Higher prices for a label doesn't mean the product is any more "cruelty-free" than a cruelty-free product without the label. While the label certainly helps identify cruelty-free skincare brands, there are plenty of excellent cruelty-free products out there that choose not to go through the labeling process.
Where Are the Products Sold?Not everyone abides by the same rules when it comes to cruelty-free. Because the label isn't regulated, there's plenty of wiggle-room when it comes to cruelty-free in the U.S. versus other countries--especially China. Your favorite cruelty-free face wash can be "cruelty-free" in the U.S. Buy it with confidence that on your home soil, it is cruelty-free. However, if that same face wash sells in China, you might want to reconsider that product as truly "cruelty-free." Until recently, China was the only country in the world that required manufacturers to test all completed cosmetics on animals. This meant that if your favorite face wash sells in China, distributors were testing it once it arrives in China. Without animal testing, they could not sell any cosmetics to consumers. However, in March 2019, Chinese authorities announced an end to mandatory, post-market product testing. While not entirely out of the woods, this is encouraging news for the cosmetics industry and global cruelty-free progress.
Consider More Than Cruelty-FreeIt's certainly crucial for companies not to test products on animals! However, that doesn't necessarily make a cruelty-free product safer than any other product. Your search for the best skin care products for your skin should include heavy consideration on the ingredients of your products. When doing your research, look for safe, pure ingredients. Also, look for things that aren't in the final product.
- Look for plant-based products
- Check for paraben-free products and sulfate/phosphate-free
- Avoid artificial colorants, harmful chemicals, fragrances, and synthetic chemicals