• What is ethical beauty?
  • Clean Beauty vs. Ethical Beauty: What's the difference?
  • 4 Reasons to Switch to Ethical Beauty Products
  • Shop Ethical Skincare

What is ethical beauty?

At Truth About Makeup, we’re passionate about ethical beauty – we believe that cosmetics should never harm the earth, or any of its inhabitants. That being said, the term ‘ethical beauty’ isn’t regulated so anyone can claim that they’re beauty products are ethical, even if they’re not.

Figuring out who to trust can be a headache. To make your lives easier, we thought we’d share how we decide whether a beauty brand is ethical or not so that you can make informed decisions about which brands you’d like to buy from.

We think that beauty brands should encompass all of the Truth About Makeup values in order to be considered ethical. This means they should be vegan and 100% cruelty free, use ethically-sourced non-toxic ingredients, and have an ethical supply chain, sustainable practices and recyclable or compostable packaging.

It may sound like a long list, but brands that follow these principles are putting the planet and all of its inhabitants first. And that’s exactly why we support them!

Clean Beauty vs. Ethical Beauty: What's the difference?

‘Clean’ beauty products are all the rage right now. Thanks to more research and better education, people are starting to realise that the chemicals we put on our skin, hair and nails can negatively impact our health and wellbeing.

Painting blue nail varnish onto a hand against a green background

From parabens and sulphates to artificial fragrances and talc, too many of the ingredients commonly found in cosmetic products have been proven to cause harm. It’s no wonder that clean beauty is on the rise – when it comes to beauty products, all ‘clean’ really means is ‘non-toxic’.

While the ingredients in clean beauty products are always safe for human use, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re natural. In fact, many clean beauty products still contain synthetic ingredients and preservatives. More importantly though, just because something is ‘clean’ doesn’t mean that it’s ‘ethical’.

Yes, the ethical beauty movement considers which ingredients go into the cosmetics we use on a day-to-day basis – and ensuring products are non-toxic is a big part of being ethical! – but it’s also so much more than that…

4 Reasons to Switch to Ethical Beauty Products

1. Stand Against Animal Cruelty

Cosmetics animal testing is officially banned in the UK, but this has done little to prevent animal cruelty in the beauty industry. In fact, many of the country’s favourite beauty brands regularly commission brutal tests on animals in order to sell products in China.

And needless animal testing isn’t the only issue… Too many beauty products found on UK shelves are made from animal-derived ingredients, from keratin shampoo to collagen face cream. Animals are regularly exploited and killed for the purpose of vanity.

Luckily, the ethical beauty movement is against animal exploitation and suffering, which means ethical cosmetics are vegan and 100% cruelty free! Choose ethical beauty products over the alternative and stand against animal cruelty in the beauty industry today!

2. Reduce Waste

Did you know that a single empty shampoo bottle can take 100 to 400 years to break down? And with

UK households throwing away approximately 66 pieces of plastic packaging per week, it’s never been more important to go ethical.

Look for beauty brands with recycled, recyclable, compostable or reusable packaging and always rinse out and recycle bottles and containers after use. Doing so will help to reduce environmental pollution and prevent plastics from entering the ocean and harming marine life.

3. Protect Rainforests

Approximately half of the products available in supermarkets are believed to contain palm oil. It’s used in nearly everything, from food to beauty products! While palm oil itself isn’t hazardous, it’s being harvested on a massive scale to keep up with consumer demand and this is harming the planet’s rainforests.

waterfall amongst plants in a lush green rainforest

According to Greenpeace, an area of rainforest the size of a football pitch is cut down in Indonesia every 25 seconds to clear space for palm oil plantations. Not only is deforestation one of the biggest contributors to global warming, it also results in the destruction of habitats. Endangered species such as tigers, rhinos, elephants and orangutans are losing their homes due to palm oil production.   

Given this, ethical beauty brands never use palm oil. But be wary! There are hundreds of derivatives of palm oil and they all have different names, from Glycerin to Sodium Cocoate. Look for an International Palm Oil Free Certification Trademark or Orangutan Alliance label to be sure your beauty products are palm-oil free. You can also find the full list of palm oil derivatives on the Orangutan Alliance website.

4. Support Human Rights

Another hot topic for ethical beauty brands is ethical sourcing. If a beauty product is ethically sourced, its production and the cultivation of its ingredients didn’t involve child labour, forced labour, unfair wages, discrimination or harassment at any stage of the supply chain.

Look for the Fair Trade certification on beauty products to help farmers and workers around the world access fairer prices, and keep an eye out for ingredients like mica, a shimmery mineral added to makeup products which has been directly linked to child labour.

Shop Ethical Skincare

Being ethical is what Truth About Makeup is all about. All of our products are ethically-sourced, vegan and 100% cruelty free. Plus, everything comes in recyclable packaging!

Check out our range of ethical skincare products and show your support for independent UK brands that are doing their bit for the planet, its people and its animals.

February 28, 2023