Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

When I made the pledge to take part in Veganuary my aim was simply to adopt a vegan diet, which I have since committed to carrying on permanently. For February I decided to take the next step, to begin educating myself on the processes and ingredients that go into the beauty products that I own so as to make it easier for me to make good, ethical decisions on my future purchases.

Whilst it’s fairly straightforward to work out whether the food you’re eating contains animal derived ingredients or not, in the beauty world things are far more complex. For example, did you know that just because something has the Leaping Bunny logo (shown below) and is labelled cruelty free, that doesn’t neccessarily make it 100% vegan? That’s because whilst it may not have been tested on animals, its ingredients still might contain them.

Leaping Bunny Logo

If you flip it around, a product can be vegan (i.e. not contain animal derived ingredients) but may not be cruelty free as it could still have been tested on animals. To make things even more confusing, lot of brands which claim to be cruelty free on their websites aren’t really cruelty free at all because they choose to sell their products in mainland China, where it’s law that foreign manufactured cosmetics must undergo animal testing. Whilst the testing is usually carried out by the government it is agreed to and funded by the brand. Thus they are very much complicit in the practice despite their protestations to the contrary.

When it comes to buying beauty products, I definitely want to move away from supporting brands that are not cruelty free or that contain animal derivatives. Realistically though this isn’t going to happen overnight. I need to carry on with my research to work out which of my beloved, tried and tested products can stay, and which ones I need to find affordable alternatives for.

Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

Green People* have already helped me to make a few swops. They are a certified organic health and beauty brand who do not test their products on animals and who strive to make as many products in their skin, hair and makeup range as possible suitable for vegans and vegetarians. They reached out to me at the start of Veganuary to introduce themselves and offered to send me some of their hair and beauty products which are certified by the Vegan Society.

The Vegan Society logo (shown below) tells you that the product has never been tested on animals in any capacity and does not contain animal derivatives. In other words, it certifies that a product is 100% vegan and cruelty free.

Vegan Society Logo

Here’s how I got on:

Haircare

Starting with haircare, I received the Quinoa and Artichoke Shampoo and Conditioner. I wasn’t sure what to expect scent wise (quinoa and artichoke didn’t sound all that appealing to me) but they smell fresh and citrussy. The shampoo is deceptive as you don’t need much at all, a small blob works up into a really good lather. I tend to spend quite a chunk of my beauty budget on haircare and get through bottles quickly so anything that makes things more economical for me is a winner in my book.

Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

The shampoo has been somewhat of a revelation for me. It leaves my hair feeling clean and light and it has given it such a lovely shine! I’m not planning to return to my previous shampoo. In fact, I’ve already purchased another bigger bottle of this stuff to make sure I don’t run out!

The conditioner is also very lightweight and yet does a good job of sorting out my tangle prone hair. I tend to use an intensive hair mask most of the time so I’ve still got plenty of this left but I would definitely consider buying this again when it runs out to complement the shampoo.

By the way, these haircare products are also gluten free so they are suitable for those with gluten sensitivities too.

Shower Gel

The Daily Aloe Shower Gel has been another big hit with me. It doesn’t smell as strongly as the highly scented shower gels I tend to go for but it has a lovely consistency.It is really gentle and leaves my skin feeling nice and soft after use. I’ve noticed that it’s also great for those times in between my IPL treatments when I need to shave my legs in the shower, as it just glides along my skin with no bother and helps me to get a really close but comfortable shave.

Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

At £12.50 though this one is a bit out of my budget for an everyday shower gel sadly, I usually spend between £2 and £5. However I’d liken it to the L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil which I’ve tried samples of in the past and costs £18.

Gentle Cleanse & Makeup Remover

I have incredibly sensitive skin around my eyes but I have used this to remove my eye makeup without any resulting stinging or puffiness. I think I react to some of the chemicals in standard creams so maybe I got on well with this because the ingredients are so natural. All I know is that it works really well, tackling my heavy eye makeup and mascara with ease. I’d consider it reasonably priced for what I usually spend on cleansers, at £19 for 150ml.

Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

This is a great alternative to the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish, which is still a fantastic product that I absolutely adore but isn’t 100% vegan as it contains beeswax.

Peppermint and Aloe Organic Mint Toothpaste

Confession: I didn’t start using this until midway through Veganuary because I have really sensitive teeth and I didn’t want to switch from my normal high street one, which I know makes me a bad vegan.

Green People | Vegan Beauty Review

I wish I could tell you that I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was when I did finally try it, because obviously I want to move over to all natural products where possible, but I just couldn’t get on with it. The paste was an offputting beige colour and it didn’t taste or feel pleasant in my mouth.

My boyfriend thought I was being a bit of a wuss and tried it too, but didn’t like it either. I’m sorry The Green People, I just can’t get on board with this one despite really, REALLY wanting to!

In conclusion, it has been great to discover a company that makes it so easy to find 100% vegan products that don’t compromise on performance and still evoke a feeling of luxury. I’m so glad that they contacted me as I had not heard of the company previously, but I have a feeling I’m going to be shopping there regularly now!

If you want to know more about the topics I have discussed in todays post this article from EthicalElephant helped me to understand the different ways of classifying the ethical status of beauty products. I recommend giving it a read.

LovedByLaura

*Disclaimer: I was gifted the items in this post for review purposes. As always, I’ve provided my honest thoughts on them.

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Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

On Friday the lovely team at Peterborough’s Lush store hosted their first ever Bloggers Event. I was planning to post about my visit and all the lovely things we did (which of course I will talk about below!) but first let me address what’s been on my mind since the event:

Cute baby orangutans!

Baby orangutans? In a beauty post? Yes. Yes there are. Stick with me on this!

So at the event I was given a copy of their Spring catalogue and decided to flick through it when I got home. Right at the front of the magazine before you get to all those pampering treats was an article from their Head Buyer Simon Constantine. It immediately struck a chord with me as it talked about the depletion of the rainforests due to the massive consumer demand for palm oil and how destructive this is to our wildlife’s natural habitats.

I had witnessed this first hand when I honeymooned in Borneo. We stayed at the Shangri-La Rasa Ria resort in Kota Kinabulu where there is an Orangutan Sanctuary onsite.

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I will always cherish the memory and photos I took of them swooping down through the trees to eat fruit supplied by the keepers, gazing at us shyly before deciding that lunchtime was over and they’d rather get back to the rainforest thanks very much.

The memories are tinged with sadness too though, because really I shouldn’t have been able to get up close and personal with the orangutans. They should have been with their mothers. The only reason I could go visit them is because they were orphans. Orphans whose homes were destroyed in a quest for palm oil, creating the need for a sanctuary like Rasa Ria.

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This is why I really love companies like Lush, as their ethical sourcing of ingredients and work with fair trade suppliers around the world helps us all to get our beauty fix without damaging the planet in the process.

Their products are handmade with absolutely no animal testing and contain only natural ingredients or safe synthetics. Whilst I’ll be totally honest and tell you that I can’t say with 100% certainty that every product that I use in day to day life measures up to this high standard, I’m trying to make responsible choices. That’s why I have a lot of time for Lush!

(Also I love watching their bath bombs fizz away!)

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Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, let’s get back to Friday night! Upon arrival at the store in Queensgate Shopping Centre I was greeted by the lovely Lush Peterborough Squad who tempted me in with drinks and biscuits and the promise of hand massages and face masks.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

Grace, Carolynn and Lisa walked us around the store, showing us the range of products in each section, allowing us to sniff and test them and giving us the story behind each.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

The man behind their haircare range, for example, is a former trichologist and therefore an expert in developing products to make your hair and scalp healthy and glossy.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

Emotional Brilliance

I’ve never really thought of Lush as a place to go for makeup before but what Grace explained about their approach to cosmetics made perfect sense. Their products are very kind to skin due to their natural ingredients, totally free from animal testing (YAY!) and each is designed to make you feel good on the inside as well as out! They call it Emotional Brilliance and their products are all given names depending on the ‘mood’ of how you feel/want to feel, like Confident, Decisive and Passionate.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

Their scents are all natural too and Lisa explained that they will smell differently on each individual, so it’s best to give them a spritz and let them rest on your skin for a bit. I really liked the smell of the men’s fragrances, especially the sea salty waft of ‘dirty’. But let’s be honest, I mainly loved it for the packaging!

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

Handmade Face Masks

To demonstrate what goes into a Lush product we got to see the Catastrophe Cosmetic face mask made from scratch.

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Almond oil, glycerine, calamine powder and a punnet of blueberries as well as other soothing ingredients were combined to make up a really soothing, cleansing treat for our skin and we all got to take a pot home to try it for ourselves.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

Stress Busting Pamper Time

If I wasn’t already relaxed enough at this stage, as a final treat we were all given a blissful stress busting hand and arm massage.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

I really want to tell you what was used, because my arm felt so moisturised and supple aftwards, but I have to admit to drifting off to a faraway place and completely forgetting to ask!

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I think it was one of their massage bars though as we’d learned about them earlier. They look a bit like soap, but you rub them onto your skin to release the butters and oils.

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

I’d like to say a HUGE thanks to Georgie and the team at Lush Peterborough in Queensgate Shopping Centre for putting on such a fun and informative evening for us all.

…and for reminding me to think about those baby orangutans and whether I’m helping them live a happy life when making my shopping list!

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…AND FINALLY.

I went on an obligatory shopping spree after hearing about all the lovely products, so look out for my review of my Lush haul coming very soon!

Lush Peterborough Bloggers Event #qbloggers

For more information on Lush please visit: Lush.com

LovedByLaura

Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored, I just bloody love Lush! See my Disclaimer page if you’re interested in reading more about how I decide what makes it onto Loved By Laura!

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