Summer Essentials for Animal Lovers

Shopping vegan and cruelty-free couldn’t be easier! Hundreds of products are marked with cruelty-free logos and are more accessible than ever (wet n wild, physicians formula, essence, Pixi, real techniques, e.l.f., and many more are cruelty-free).

Although, animal testing for cosmetic purposes still prevails. Each year, millions of being are tortured: chemicals are rubbed onto their shaved skin or directly inserted into their eyes (skin and eye irritation tests), many are repeatedly force-fed chemicals for months (ingestion tests), and some are fed massive amounts of chemicals to determine the dose that causes death (lethal dose tests).  And yes, this DOES happen in Canada. While many individuals are subject to this sort of cruelty, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, rats, and mice are most commonly victims.

ALTHOUGH, THERE IS HOPE! Recently the Senate cleared Bill S-214, an act that would prohibit cosmetic animal testing in Canada and the sale of cosmetics developed or manufactured using cosmetic animal testing outside Canada. It would also prohibit the cosmetic industry in Canada from using data derived from animal testing done for other purposes. But, it must be voted on by the commons until it becomes law.

Until then, I urge you to support brands that have never considered committing acts of violence against innocent sentient beings and have always been cruelty-free.

Here are my top 6 summer essentials:

Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum & Mad Hippie Cream Cleanser


I could not pick a favorite between the Cream Cleanser and the Vitamin C Serum, nor can I live without either, so I had to include both!

At first, I was hesitant to buy the cleanser considering the oily and acne-prone nature of my skin but honestly, this cleanser + my skin type = a match made in heaven. The cleanser is moisturizing without feeling heavy or oily. It is perfect for everyday use, leaves your skin incredibly soft and smooth and removes all dirt and impurities without stripping your skin.

Like all other Mad Hippie products, it is packed with antioxidants such as orchid extract (an agent that slows the flower’s degeneration, allowing the orchid to bloom for dramatically longer than other flowers), macadamia oil (provides instant moisturizing effects), and sesame oil (rich in vitamin E and vitamin A which helps to even skin tone).

Honestly, I can pretty much guarantee anyone will love and benefit from this cleanser, I personally have gone through two bottles,  I think that is why the brand literally has a 60-day money-back guarantee!

Mad Hippie’s Vitamin C Serum has been named “a miracle worker” by Allure Magazine and I couldn’t agree more! The serum contains 8 active ingredients that collectively do wonders for your skin. The Vitamin C and E reduce discoloration, the Hyaluronic Acid increases the plumpness of your skin, the Konjac Root Powder works to soften and smooth the skin, the grapefruit acts as a natural exfoliant, the chamomile extract soothes and calms the skin, and the clary sage eliminates overly dry or overly oily skin by acting as a natural toner. The ingredients it is formulated with are all natural so no need to worry about harsh chemicals!

Before using the product, I was saving up for laser skin resurfacing as my dermatologist suggested it may be beneficial for my acne scars. But after using the full bottle to its last drop my face is the closest it has ever been to flawless and it saved me the thousands of dollars I would have spent. My skin is brighter, texture-free/smooth, less oily and has barely any scars left. The product also has incredible anti-aging properties and is known for its power to reduce signs of aging.  

Bonus: $1 of every website purchase is dedicated to Save the Elephants, all products (except the SPF) are vegan, aesthetically pleasing packaging, super affordable + their 60-day money back guarantee (which you probably won’t even need).

Zyderma Clarifying Cream


Summertime acne is real! Heat and humidity tend to intensify oil production, which often means more breakouts for acne prone individuals like me. Unfortunately, I have struggled with acne throughout the majority of my life. Before I was vegan I tried many harsh and chemical-heavy treatments such as proactive, dermatologist prescribed topical gels like Tactuo (a combination of adapalene and benzoyl peroxide) and honestly, the list goes on.

When I went vegan and began shopping for cruelty-free alternatives, I came across Zyderma’s Clarifying Cream and all I can say is I wish I knew about the brand sooner. The cream is absolute magic and in my experience completely eradicates new pimples in 3 days. I love using it as a spot treatment but since it’s formulated with naturally-derived ingredients and is free of parabens, propylene glycol, oils, fragrances and dyes it is also gentle enough for daily use. I recommend this product to anyone struggling with acne as it is great for all skin types!

Bonus: the product is vegan, made in Canada and the MicroSilver BG™ it uses is Eco-friendly and does not pose any threat to the environment in applied concentrations.

Hurraw Balm


Since trying Hurraw! Balm, I have not gone back to any of my other lip balms and I am confident I never will. Every lip balm is natural, vegan, and made from raw and organic ingredients. It is also the perfect size and can squeeze into literally any purse. The formula is super long lasting, smooth, and does not melt in your pocket like most other lip balms. There are so many scents and flavors to choose from and some even contain SPF 15. TRUST ME, these are the best lip balms on the market (period).

Bonus: available at most health food stores, affordable, and super cute + unique packaging.

Pretty Woman Nail Polish


Unfortunately, not many know that many nail polishes contain Carmine (a red pigment derived from crushed up beetles) and Guanine (derived from fish scales to provide a shimmery effect). Additionally, some of the leading nail polish brands like Essie, OPI, and Sally Hansen test on animals. However, brands like Pretty Woman NYC are dedicated to ensuring your nails look cute and animals can stay cute.

All their nail polishes are 10, paraben, sulfate, petrochemical and, of course, cruelty-free. The brand is also super on trend and has a massive selection of polishes, whether you’re in the mood for glitter, shimmer, or anything else they have got you covered. The polish is non-streaky, long lasting and applies flawlessly. Instead of adding another Essie polish to your collection, I recommend you check out Pretty Woman.

Bonus: customer satisfaction guarantee, vegan, and free shipping over $15 ( basically just two nail polishes).

Blissful Beauty Mineral Glow Face Powder (Bronzer)


It is not summer without bronzer, duh! As a bronzer junkie I have tried everything from Kat Von D to Too Faced, but trust me this bronzer is by far the best. Not only is it handmade, hypoallergenic, cruelty-free, natural and purse friendly but also incredibly pigmented (a little goes a long way) with the slightest amount of shimmer to enhance your summer glow. The formula is also summer smooth and not chalky to guarantee a flawless application. The bronzer comes in two shades but I find the medium shade is suitable for a diverse range of skin colors. If you are looking for a new bronzer, definitely check out Blissful Beauty’s!

Bonus: vegan-friendly, made in Canada, 10% off + free samples using the code “WESTERN10”

Fellow readers, let’s keep our fingers crossed for Bill S-214 but never forget to recognize the brands who have always been dedicated to a peace and love for all beings!





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