Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Sonia Kashuk

Hey guys.

I received a reply from a representative of Sonia Kashuk. As you know, in the USA Sonia Kashuk products are sold in Target, as far as I'm aware. They have eyeshadow, brushes, blush, eyeliner the works. This is what the email said:

"Hi Camila,

     Thank you for contacting us! No, all of our products are cruelty-free and we are completely against harming any animals in any way for the production of our products.
       This stance on animal cruelty applies to our cosmetic products as well as our brushes. We also ensure our manufacturers and suppliers do not test on animals as we are extremely against it! 
    Our company is very passionate about this as I'm sure you are too and we will diligently keep our policies as such. However, our products are not vegan, since we do use animal by-products in our line. That being said, all animal by products used are still cruelty free. For instance, beeswax is used in our lipstick. This is an animal by-product making the lipstick non-vegan, but obtaining beeswax does not harm the bee. Another example is our natural hair brushes. The bristles are made of animal hair, which is an animal by-product, but the hair is obtained through a simple hair cut, just like cutting human hair, leaving the animal alive and unharmed. 
     You can go to our website, www.soniakashuk.com for full ingredient listings of all products to determine which products have non-vegan ingredients and of course, all synthetic brushes are vegan. 
     As I stated prior, we do NOT test on animals, we are extremely against this and we are very passionate about anti-animal cruelty so we always rigorously maintain these policies. You should also be happy to know we are not sold in China, currently just the US, as I’m sure you are aware of their requirement of animal testing. As for the origin of palm oil/carnuaba wax, I am not sure if we even use this in production of our product but I will look into this matter further. I hope this helps and if you have any further inquires please do not hesitate to ask.
 {names are omitted], Inc.

Although, not all of Sonia Kashuk Products are vegan, I would still feel extremely comfortable purchasing from them. They do not sell in China which is a big factor of how I decide which companies I will support. Also, they do NOT test on animals, which is my main concern. Does the fact that they are not completely vegan bother me?
No. I'm a vegetarian, not a vegan. I try to look for vegan products because I don't like the way animals are treated, They are considered merchandise and made to produce, and produce, and produce without rest. Like chickens, cows, pigs that are cultivated and feed at times their own meat, cows are given corn, pigs are given all the scraps,etc. I do believe God created animals to serve as our food, not all animals. As of now I would never go back and eat meat, because what I eat is normal to me. However, I support people who purchase grass-feed beef, and antibiotic free turkey and chicken.

Also, the fact that Sonia Kashuk is one of the first companies that explains in detail how they collect the natural hairs from the animals, shows me that they do not have anything to hide. They also talk about the manner in which they gather the honey. Quite, honestly I would research still more about their exact methods for doing so, but as of now I would definitely purchase from them.

I must confess I am really delighted with this email and feel that if more companies were like this, willing to produce awesome cruelty-free products, this country would be a much better place.

-Camila A.

P.S. What do you think?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Urban Decay Update

UPDATE: (April 28, 2013) Urban Decay was purchased by L'Oreal Paris, sometime in November of 2012. L'Oreal is NOT cruelty-free. To read all the details click here. To read my correspondence with L'Oreal click here. 

DISCLAIMER: This was published BEFORE L'Oreal purchased UrbanDecay!!!!
Hey guys.
 So I received a reply from a Urban Decay representative in regards to selling in China.
My question:

"[names are omitted],Thank you for your correspondence. I have one question, that wasn't addressed in the link you provided. Does UrbanDecay sale in China? If so, how does the company get around the Chinese animal testing policy? Thank you in advance.Camila Alvarez "

"Hi Camila,We currently do not sell our products in China.Best Regards,[any names will be omitted]"

So, as you can see Urban Decay is completely cruelty-free. 
1. their "raw materials" are not tested on animals. 
2. nor are their final products
3.they DO NOT sell in China 
4. they have many vegan products 
5. They are listed on PETA's and Leaping Bunny's list of Cruelty-free companies.
6. I will be adding them to my cruelty-free list, once it's done. Unless, new information arises.
For now, I would feel comfortable buying their products. Not that I will anytime soon, I'm a college student after all. This view might change if, like i mentioned new information arises. 
It's difficult to know 100%, that a company is cruelty-free. That's why it's important of us to petition and to ask, and ask, and ask, for these companies to go cruelty-free. It's the power of the many. Vote with your money for cruelty-free companies. Hopefully, someday we will live in a society that values the life's of animals. A society, that see's them as friends rather than petri-dishes.
-Camila A.  
P.S. Leave your opinion or/and feedback. I would love to hear people's opinions. 

Urban Decay

Hey guys.
I emailed Urban Decay, using the format letter. I received a reply today. I would like to share it :

"Dear Ms. Camila Alvarez,
Customer Service has forward your email to me.
    We at Urban Decay Cosmetics are extremely concerned about our customer's satisfaction and do value the input from our devoted customers, so we appreciate you writing to us in regards to the research you are doing on animal testing. Please refer to the following links on our website to answer your questions-
http://www.urbandecay.com/Animal-Testing-Policy/animal-testing-policy,default,pg.html   We hope you continue to enjoy products from the Urban Decay line as you will continue to see our quality is amongst the very best. We truly appreciate and thank you for your patronage.
   Best regards,
UD Regulatory Department
Urban Decay Cosmetics LLC
833 W. 16th StreetNewport Beach, CA 92663Phone: 949.631.4504"

If you go to the link provided here is what it says:
"Animal Testing PolicyUrban Decay is a cruelty-free brand and is committed to ending animal testing. We do not test our finished products on animals, nor do we allow others to test on our behalf. Additionally, we require our suppliers to certify that the raw materials used in the manufacture of our products are not tested on animals. Our practices are certified by both PETA and The Leaping Bunny Program (CCIC) as cruelty-free."

Usually when companies state that their final product is not tested on animals, it implies that their ingredients might be tested on animals. However, it specifically states that the "raw materials" meaning the ingredients are not tested on animals. UrbanDecay, also states that they require suppliers to certify the "raw materials" as cruelty-free. If you have looked at the cruelty-free lists offered by both PETA and LeapingBunny.org you would be similar with UrbanDecay as one of the few huge makeup companies that are widely known as cruelty-free. So why was I inclined to follow up on them?

Its important to conduct your own research. Its easy, specially in our society, to be gullible and apathetic in regards to facts or news. Although, PETA and LeapingBunny are both committed to helping those of us who want to go cruelty-free, they can make mistakes. In order for me to feel secure in my purchase of cruelty-free cosmetics I need to "see" the truths for myself. I encourage you to use PETA and Leaping Bunny and my blog as accessories to your research. That's another reason I strongly encourage you all to email these companies and ask them about their policies. See for yourself first, then make an educated decision. If you do contact these companies please share below in the comments or email me at ca.alva@yahoo.com.

So now, how do I feel about purchasing from UrbanDecay?

I feel more comfortable. Will I go out and get myself the Naked Palette, as of now? No. I heard many contradictory stories about UrbanDecay. From random blogs. (Read veggiebeauty.com).

Therefore, I emailed them back, asking about their policy for selling in China. Many cruelty-free companies sell in China, through the web and therefore, do not need regulate to China's required testing on animals policy. Once, I get a response I will share it here.

Comment below and tell me how you feel about UrbanDecay.


Friday, September 21, 2012


Hey guys! 
I tried contacting Maybelline. They only allow you to ask one question at a time. This was on their Q & A page. I would like to share it:
Read it for yourself: Maybelline Q & A

"ANIMAL TESTING POLICY.The safety of our consumers is our highest priority at Maybelline, a division of L'Oréal USA, Inc. Our products and ingredients undergo extensive screening so that consumers may purchase and use our products with complete confidence.All the brands of the L'Oréal Group are in full compliance with the requirements for safety in the more than 130 countries in which our products are sold, as well as with FDA regulations and the European Union Cosmetic Directive.L’Oreal is a leader in developing alternative methods to animal testing with the ultimate goal of eliminating all animal testing completely. In 1989, L’Oreal voluntarily stopped using animal testing for the evaluation of its entire range of finished products. The company has invested $800 million over the last 25 years to develop innovative, alternative methods to animal testing, particularly in the area of reconstructed tissue development. We are totally committed to a future without tests on animals.
To learn more about L’Oreal’s work in the area of alternative methods to animal testing, please visit our Sustainability website at http://www.sustainabledevelopment.loreal.com/research-innovation/focus-on-predictive-evaluation/a-new-generation-of-predictive-evaluation-methods.aspx"

     I feel that Maybelline is trying to excuse their unethical behavior by stating that they wish for "a future without tests on animals". Besides that, I feel like this answer is filled with a bunch of unrelated information. These companies try to set themselves up as the good guys when they are as inhumane as humanity can get.
       I want to start a cruelty-free list on my blog. I need to gather more information to put together a well rounded list. For now, add Burt's Bees and Maybelline and some others that test on animals, but without evidence I won't add them to my list yet. 

Feel free to comment.

Camila A. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Burt's Bee's, Un(bee)lievable

Hey guys. So today I got a reply from Burt's Bee's, specifically a Burt's Bee's employee at the Consumer Care Team. I would like to share that email and then express how I feel about it. 

"Dear Miss Alvarez,
      This is Leigh with Burt's Bees. Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us with your concern. We appreciate the opportunity to share our stance on animal testing and our relationship to Clorox.
     We are passionate about our principles and we do not conduct any manner of animal testing nor do we ask others to do so on our behalf. Our products are certified under the Consumer Information on Cosmetics’ (CCIC) Leaping Bunny program, whose seal we proudly display on our packaging. Learn more about the Leaping Bunny seal at leapingbunny.org.
      Yes, Burt’s Bees is owned by Clorox and they are aware of, and fully support our position on animal testing, as they are also committed to the welfare of animals. In fact, using non-animal product safety evaluations is the norm at Clorox. Animal testing is a rare exception, used only when required by law or when all other efforts have been exhausted to establish a product's safety profile. If you would like to read Clorox’s full policy on animal testing, please use the following link: http://www.cloroxcsr.com/products-safety/.
In addition, you may find our Corporate Social Responsibility Report of great interest. It is located at burtbees.com/CSR. If we can provide any further information, please feel free to contact us at 1-800-849-7112 or burtsbees@consumerreply.com.
      GMO is an organism (such as a plant) that has been genetically modified. We reject the use of GMOs because not enough is known about their use and we are not convinced that they are natural or safe. Furthermore, we do not believe GMOs should be used in any kind of personal care products.
     Currently, there is a lot of controversy concerning GMOs and until researchers conclude that this technology is safe we will not use it in any of our products.
     I am sorry but none of our products are certified vegan.
All the best,

Consumer Care Team"

Camila's View:  

I feel extremely disappointed. Burt's Bee's is one of the biggest companies out there the targets natural products. How can a company define itself as natural and "nature becomes you" when they are using animals as petri-dishes for your experiments? Sure they don't test their products on animals, only when "required by law"?? This is a misconception MANY people have, the law (USA) DOES NOT require companies to test their products on animals. Check out : the FDA website to see their regulations on animal testing.    Further, they are owned by Clorox, which is the parent company, meaning even if you buy Burt's Bees stuff, those millions of dollars also go to Clorox and funds their animal testing. By the way Clorox owns Burt's Bees!!?? Clorox makes cleaning supplies, like Bleach that has many chemicals. These two companies seem almost complete opposites!   If you are serious about going cruelty-free, you MUST look at the parent company as well. I will definitely STOP buying from Burt's Bee's and encourage all who want to go cruelty-free, or are cruelty-free and didn't realize Clorox owns Burt's Bee's to stop buying their products. 


P.S. Feel free to leave me what you think about this in the comments. Did you use Burt's Bees? WIll you continue to buy from them? 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Cruelty Free/ Power of the Bill/ Vote with your Money

I'm doing research by contacting popular cosmetic companies and inquiring on their animal testing policies. I borrowed this formate from veggiebeauty.com when acquiring information from the companies. "To Whomever it May Concern:I am doing research on animal testing, and I need to verify a few key points about your company.
1. Does your company test ingredients or finished products on animals?
2. Do you test ingredients or products on animals through a 3rd party?
3. Do your manufacturers test ingredients or products on animals?
4. Are you owned or affliliated with any companies that test products or ingredients on animals?
5. Do you/your parent company currently or have plans to market and sell your products in the Chinese market, which requires animal testing by law to sell in that country?
6. Do you use palm oil/carnuaba wax in any of your products? If so, is it from an organic and sustainable source?
7. Could you provide a list of all of your current vegan items available for purchase?
Thank you so much for the information."

So far I have contacted Physicians formula and Burt's Bees. 

If you are willing to also contact these types of companies and share their responses with this blog, and me Camila, I would appreciate it. I also think it's important to see how these companies respond to different people.
 Unfortunately, without physically checking out the companies factories there is no 100% bullet proof way of proving if they do or do not test on animals. Also, if many people show interest in purchasing cruelty free/vegan products more companies will want to go in that direction. The power that we have to vote with our money is powerful, and that is the biggest way we can get these corporations to listen to us. 

Camila A. 


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