I don’t think I’m alone when I say I used to think cruelty-free and vegan meant the same thing, however, there are some important differences between the two and understanding these has helped me to make much more conscious choices.
Cruelty-Free = No animal testing, a brand doesn’t test its formulations, ingredients or finished products on animals.
Vegan = No animal ingredients or animal derived by-products.
Products can be classified as both cruelty-free and vegan. It means the product was not tested on animals and it does not contain animal products or by-product ingredients.
Cruelty Free but Not Vegan
Products can be cruelty-free but not vegan, this means the product wasn’t tested on animals, but does contain animal ingredients.
Vegan but Still Tested on Animals
Products can be classified as vegan, meaning they contain no animal ingredients or by-products, but are still tested on animals. For example, a number of toothpaste brands that contain plant-based glycerin instead of animal fat sources (whether intentionally or not) but are still tested on animals. However, many people consider a product cannot be classed as vegan if it has been tested on animals. This is due to the animal exploitation that is still undertaken in the development and manufacturing of the product.
Logos to look out for
– Cruelty free only applies to animal testing
– Vegan only applies to the use of animal-derived ingredients
– Products can be both cruelty free and vegan
– Products can be cruelty free but not vegan
– Products can be vegan but not cruelty free