A few weeks back I scraped the last of my Australian-made Natio makeup from the pot and began hunting for a natural and cruelty-free alternative available here in Spain. For once the internet gods were unwilling so I took to the shops, showcasing my broken Spanish to a bunch of confused sales assistants until finally I happened upon what I thought was the perfect solution – BareMinerals makeup by Bare Escentuals.
It wasn’t until I got home and dug a little deeper into the company that I realised I’d made a mistake.
On the surface, Bare Escentuals looks great. Many of their products are vegan and on their website they proudly proclaim: “Please feel at ease when using Bare Escentuals and mdformulations products as we do not test any products on animals. We also do not work with any manufacturers that do animal testing.” (Source.)
The spiel fails to mention the key fact that Bare Escentuals was bought out by the major Japanese cosmetics manufacturer Shiseido in 2010. Shiseido tests on animals (here’s the proof).
So if you buy Bare Escentuals products, you’re ultimately spending on Shiseido – and helping fund animal cruelty.
Unfortunately this situation, when a reputable company is bought out by an unethical major player, happens all too often. The Body Shop is another example – there have been calls for boycotts since the company was bought out in 2006 by L’Oreal, which tests on animals.
We all use cosmetics in some form or another, right? Perhaps you could take the time to check where your products fall on the exceptionally informative Ethical Consumer Guide list. You might be shocked to discover that a bunch of popular supermarket and department store brands such as CoverGirl, Revlon, Clarins and Jurlique all bottom out.
Thankfully, Ethical Consumer Guide has made it super easy for us all to swap over. Just pick from the products that earn a big black tick. (For the record, Alana uses – and loves – the Australian-made mineral makeup by Inika. I’m now on the hunt for a Europe-based alternative. Any suggestions gratefully accepted!)
We can send an incredibly powerful message by mindfully choosing where we will spend our dollars.
Money talks. Refuse to support companies that test on animals or engage in other unethical behaviour and they will soon get the message that change is unavoidable.