Long time no see!
Sorry about that. I had an inadvertent hiatus there but I am back! I have lots of fun things to review and show you but first I wanted to discuss my thoughts about an issue that is close to a lot of our hearts: animal testing.
The Blogosphere was rocked when recently brands like MAC, Avon and Mary Kay all went quietly off the cruelty-free lists. After some investigation from keen bloggers, it was discovered that these brand are expanding into China, where animal testing is required (either by doing testing themselves or letting the Chinese government do testing for them, it’s not entirely clear.) A lot of people felt betrayed by this as these were brands that have been cruelty-free for decades in some cases.
Then, cruelty-free brand Urban Decay said they were going to start selling in China and again, people were upset and felt betrayed. I know I’m not the only one who loved that the brand’s motto was “We don’t test on animals. How could anyone?” There was a massive uproar and this past week Urban Decay announced that they will NOT be selling in China and thus, keeping their truly cruelty-free label intact.
Well huzzah, right? Fast forward to now, when I see that Revlon — one of the first major US brands to forgo animal testing — is no longer on the cruelty-free list. [insert the sound of a record player needle scratching across a record here] Exercising my google fu turned up this petition by PETA, asking Revlon to “come clean” about their policies regarding animal testing. Right, so do they or don’t they? I just don’t know anymore!
It’s all incredibly shady, isn’t it? That we, the consumers, have to constantly be on our guard in case some cosmetics company decides to put their profits ahead of their ethics. Without telling us.
But hold on there a second, the waters are murkier than all that. What does it mean to be truly cruelty-free anyway. Take Burt’s Bees, which doesn’t test on animals — but is owned by Clorox, who does. Is it better to avoid Burt’s Bees altogether so that evil Clorox doesn’t get a cent of your money? Or is it better to buy from Burt’s Bees and show Clorox that CF is something that matters to you regardless.
What about non-cosmetics items? I’m not talking about things like medicine etc but what about, say, deodorant? If you buy strictly cruelty-free makeup but buy a deodorant that is nonCF, are you suddenly an evil, horrible hypocrite? What if you’re like me and live in a really shitty, rural part of the country where your access to CF items is extremely limited? Seriously, if I want to buy CF shampoo my options are…. let’s see…. nada, unless I want to spend a LOT of money on shampoo. Well, I could buy Burt’s Bees… but… well… you see my dilemma.
The more I research (and soul-search) the more I see this just isn’t a black and white issue for me. It’s hard to know where to draw the line or even if a line should be drawn. What I see is that, thankfully, attitudes regarding animal testing in cosmetics are changing. More and more people are seeing that it’s just unnecessary and cruel to make animals suffer for something so frivolous. But we still have to be diligent and let companies know what’s important to us.
So what’s it’s all mean, to me, personally? Hell, I’m still confused. But I do know that I will do my best to feature only products from cruelty-free brands on this website. (Though I do have a few Revlon items I wanted to blog about, bought before this whole damn fiasco started and I thought they were still fully CF. Bloody hells!) Most of all, I think I just have to do my best to stick to my morals and ethics and not beat myself up too much that I can’t do everything all the time. And I certainly am not going to judge anyone who feels differently.
I think this is a deeply personal issue and each person has to decide for his/herself where they stand on it.
Thinking about all of this is exhausting, isn’t it? Let’s just all have some damn ice cream!