Vegan Beauty: Way More than just a Trend

Mon, 24 Oct 2022


Veganism is by no means new, but it has been brought into the spotlight in recent years thanks to various spokespeople, research, documentaries and media attention. 
Now, more people are turning towards veganism, with an estimated 7.2 million Brits following a vegan diet—an increase of 40% in the last 12 months! But many people believe that being vegan is just about food—when in reality, veganism is a lifestyle choice that impacts everything. From the clothes you wear to the products you use. 
People are increasingly aware of the impact their daily lifestyle choices are having on our environment on a wider, long-term scale. As a result, they're seeking effective alternatives to those high-impact items that they can easily and gradually change. 
So today we wanted to ask: What exactly does it mean to be vegan, and how has the rise in the popularity of veganism affected the beauty industry? And, more importantly, is that change here to stay?

The Vegan Movement

At its heart, veganism is about reducing cruelty to animals in the world. The term was first coined in 1944, and it was created as an extension of vegetarianism (which dates back to ancient societies). The main way this is achieved is through diet—in general vegans will avoid eating meat and any food made from animal by-products, which includes milk, cheese, eggs and even honey.  Instead, their diet will be made up of plant-based products, and there is a massive market for vegan foods in the UK right now. 
Veganism is very much an ethical stance, and as people are becoming increasingly aware of how their lifestyle choices impact the world we live in, more and more are turning to veganism as a way to reduce that and contribute positively to our planet. By finding alternatives to products that are more harmful to the environment and animals, veganism hopes to make real changes in the world. 
From food to clothing and even beauty products, vegan products are seen as an environmentally friendly, ethical choice to make. And as the movement grows, it’s also centring on the cruelty-free element. As a result, skincare products that are both vegan and cruelty-free are highly sought after as the best choice of skincare product for beauty shoppers. 

What is Vegan Skincare?

Once you get the concept it’s pretty easy to wrap your head around a vegan diet. But when we start talking about vegan skincare it can feel a bit more confusing. Is it the same as cruelty-free skincare? Does it mean it’s not tested on animals? Are there certain ingredients that you should avoid? Don’t worry, it’s just as simple as the diet is! Vegan skincare and beauty products all meet the standard of being vegan—meaning they are not produced from any animal or animal by-product. 
And the rise of vegan skincare has certainly arrived. In 2020, 82% of the UK’s new vegan product launches came from the beauty sector, with the UK one of the leading countries to invest in vegan skincare. 
Now you might be thinking, surely all skincare is vegan, right? Well, not exactly. While skincare might not use meat and dairy, typically traditional ingredients lists include animal by-products. Beeswax is commonly used in lip balms and body butters, while lanolin (a moisturiser) actually comes from washing a sheep’s wool. Collagen, Keratin, carmine, silk and even gelatine—all of these are animal products, and all are common ingredients in skincare and beauty products. So you see, finding vegan skincare isn’t as easy as you think!
So what are vegan skincare and beauty products made from instead? Much like vegan foods, vegan skincare is made from plant-based ingredients or artificial compounds. There have been so many exciting ingredients developed within the skincare industry in recent years that there are fewer and fewer reasons to use animal-derived ones in skin, body, cosmetic and personal care products.
As demand grows from conscious customers, it’s becoming increasingly easier to find ethical, sustainable alternatives to traditional beauty ingredients. And with a little extra research, consumers can now create a whole vegan skincare routine that makes them look and feel amazing inside and out.
The innovations allow labs to create not only ethical ingredients but more sustainable alternatives to traditional ingredients which were animal by-products or animal-derived. Technology, growing knowledge about natural ingredients and new ingredient discoveries are providing plant-based alternatives to in-demand ingredients such as squalene, hyaluronic acid and retinol.

Why Choose Vegan Beauty Products?

Even if you aren’t following the vegan lifestyle, there are still some great reasons to choose vegan beauty products.

Lessens the chance of allergic reactions

The skin is the biggest organ in our body, and it breaks down whatever we put on it into compounds that it can use as building blocks for new skin. Animal-derived ingredients often aren’t recognised by the body as their chemical structures are very different from ours, which means that the body either rejects, removes or stores them. 
At best that means you see no results, and at worst it can lead to allergic reactions. Vegan ingredients are straight from nature and have been proven to be easily absorbed and broken down for use by the body, so you run a much slimmer chance of experiencing allergic reactions.

Vitamin and antioxidant boosting

A great side-effect of vegan formulations is that the ingredients used are taken directly from plants, which have significantly higher levels of vitamins and antioxidants they can bring along with them into skincare products. This boost of minerals, natural oils, vitamins and antioxidants mean the products are more effective at repairing and maintaining soft skin and will keep your skin looking and feeling healthier for longer.

Good for the environment

Producing any product is going to cause pollution and damage to the environment, but with vegan products that impact is significantly reduced. There’s no need for deforestation, and plant-based ingredients are almost always sourced sustainably. The pollution impact is minimal since there are no animal by-products involved (including methane), and while not all brands do, most vegan beauty products will be packaged in recyclable materials to reduce the negative impact on the environment as much as possible.

Why Skinfood?

At Skinfood, we are passionate about the environment, and about our customers. We understand how important it is to be transparent about what’s in your skincare and beauty products, which is why you will find an ingredients list on all our packaging and available on our website. Our aim is to provide you with the best possible quality of products, maximum results and a product you can be proud of that creates the results you’re looking for. 
Skinfood’s product portfolio is certified vegan. All of our products undergo a rigorous and technical process carried out by The Vegan Society that allows our products to carry their Vegan Trademark. Products with the authentic international vegan standard help conscious customers identify the products that align with their values more easily. 
“I want to help people to make better, more natural, ethical and sustainable skincare choices,” shares Sarah Butler, Founder of Skinfood. 
For this very reason, Skinfood products are also certified cruelty-free. These two certifications are not the same and some cruelty-free products,  although ethical because they're not tested on animals, may still contain animal products. Detailing the importance of vegan and cruelty-free at Skinfood, Sarah highlights: “This is why I'm passionate about my products carrying both marks.”
Browse our range here, or get in touch to find out more.