2016 was the year I learnt about cruelty free companies, and I’ve gradually made the switch so that most of my skincare and cosmetics are now from cruelty free brands (I still have a few items that I’ve owned since before making the switch). I’ve tried a lot of new products and many of them have been brilliant – by having to research products I’ve made more informed purchases (not all have been good though!). Here’s my favourite discoveries; the things I’d not want to be without and will repurchase once they run out.
Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel (£29.50) – By far my favourite cleanser of the year. I have dry/combination skin and this cleansing gel which transforms to an oil helps to really cleanse well, but leaves skin feeling lovely and moisturised rather than ‘squeaky clean’ which can leave it dry. The scent is lovely too, and you only need a small amount so although it’s expensive it does last a long time.
Foreo Luna Play (£29) – I got this in one of my advent calendars and am so glad I did as I’ve been wanting to try one for ages. It’s great for deep cleansing (especially around the nose). Since using this my skin has been smoother and my skincare products seem to absorb better. Sadly this can’t be recharged so once it runs out I’ll be treating myself to a full-sized rechargeable one.
Sukin Super Greens Nutrient Rich Facial Moisturiser* (£9.99) – I wouldn’t have thought this would suit my skin as I tend to prefer a gel cream moisturiser and this is a rich cream, but I got it when it was on offer as it was recommended to me by a sales assistant in a natural beauty shop in Manchester (and I loved the smell!). I love the convenience of the pump dispenser and the moisturiser does a great job at balancing my skin. I have to leave it a little while to absorb, but a little goes a long way.
Sleek CC Cream (£8.99) – I tried this earlier in the year as it has a high SPF and I thought it would make a good tinted moisturiser for summer. I ended up loving it so much I used it all through summer, autumn, and winter! I occasionally wear foundation but don’t usually like anything too heavy, and this CC cream is perfect for wearing something to help even out skintone without being too heavy. The fair shade is pale enough for me in winter, and I wore the light shade (or a mixture of light and fair) in summer when I had a bit more colour. I’m almost out of my second tube of this and have another ready for when it’s finished.
Barry M That’s How I Roll Mascara (£4.99) – It took me a while to find a cruelty free mascara I liked but I love this! It’s a plastic wand and helps separate, lengthen and curl lashes. It gives a natural look, but you can build it up too. I’m on my second tube of this which will soon need replacing.
Inika Loose Mineral Blush in Blooming Nude (£21) – another advent calendar product, but not one I thought I’d love so much. Every time I’ve worn make up since I got this at the beginning of December I’ve worn this blush. It’s a very natural colour and easy to apply (though you only need a tiny amount!). I love it, and am definitely keen to try more mineral products.
Sleek Power Plump Lip Crayon in Notorious Nude (£5.50) – this one wasn’t as well researched as other purchases; to be honest I can’t even remember why I bought it but it was probably part of an offer with the CC cream. I’m so glad I got it though as it’s definitely my most worn lip product this year. It’s a very neutral nude, a perfect ‘my lips but better’ shade for me. It has a plumping effect which gives a tingly feeling (which I love). It lasts fairly well, and is easy to reapply; it doesn’t wear in an uneven way or clump if you add more later in the day. I just love it and have recommended it to so many people. Mine is getting much shorter and I may have to buy a backup soon – I’d be gutted if they stopped making this!
Lavanila Perfume in Fresh Vanilla Lemon ($19) – Cruelty free perfumes are quite tricky to find as most of the main brands aren’t cruelty free. I like fruity scents and foodie scents so this fresh vanilla lemon fragrance is right up my street. I’ve almost finished my current one and I’ve really loved it. It’s not so easy to find in the UK sadly, but I have family in the US so I may be doing some orders to their address now I know how much I love this scent!
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Intensive Lip Balm (£14) – I use an intensive lip balm every night and when I switched to cruelty free I started using this one. It’s only a tiny pot but I’ve been using it since June and you can hardly tell I’ve used any! It’s very rich and moisturising so is great for an overnight treatment which is how I use it.
Palmer’s Coconut Oil Shampoo and Conditioner (£3.99 each) – My hair is very dry and this range works amazingly well for me. I don’t have bottles to photograph at the moment because I finally invested in a shower dispenser (I only wanted to do this once I’d found a shampoo and conditioner that suited me well!). I like the scent of this but the main thing is that it moisturises my hair well and leaves it feeling soft. My hair seems to be growing well at the moment and I think this is partly due to the shampoo and conditioner (and the fact I don’t have to style my hair as much).
Overall I’ve found some real gems this year and switching to cruelty free has been an enjoyable process and nowhere near as scary as it first seemed like it might be. The ranges I can choose from might be less than they were a year ago, but there are some great quality cruelty free brands and products so I don’t feel like I’m missing out at all.
What are your favourite cruelty free products?