The Ugly news (part 2) Animal Testing and Cruelty-Free Skin Care for You and your Family:

Sadly, a great many companies still test the product on animals or have it done for them. There is absolutely no reason for this to be continuing, with other more accurate testing methods available. Many products also contain cruelly derived animal ingredients including placental extracts (derived from calf embryos) and animal-derived ceramides (brains). With highly effective plant-derived ingredients available, there is good reason to check your product ingredients for animal products or by-products. Check for the CCF bunny logo if you wish to ensure that the product is definitely cruelty-free.

So, what is the good news?
The good news is that there are many companies in Australia who are doing the right thing and truly natural products are readily available in shops and online. A quick visit to the CCF (choose cruelty-free) website will show you the companies that have achieved cruelty-free certification and can also show you ranges that are suitable for vegans. Available online there is a wealth of information about toxic chemicals in skincare and also a copy of the MDSD (Material Safety Data Sheet) which is an A-Z of chemicals found in skincare.

So, what should I look for?

Become label savvy! Read labels carefully to check that the ingredients are natural and certified organic. Check out an online chemical ingredients dictionary online. In terms of babies and skincare, adopt a minimalist approach. Newborn babies bottoms can be washed with organic cotton balls and warm water, rather than wipes. They do not need soap. Use a natural bottom cream or balm when needed. Most of all, avoid all mineral oil based baby products and those containing sulphates (SLS and SLES). The more certified organic ingredients, the better, as this means that they have the added benefit of being chemical and pesticide-free, however, many organic products still feature chemical preservatives, so check for the absence of chemical-sounding names and seek products using natural preservatives if that is your preference. Companies who truly use natural ingredients usually have easy to read labels, but if in doubt, contact the company and ask questions…after all, its your family and your skin.

Further Information: The ACCC website tells consumers about labelling requirements in Australia. A complete list of cruelty-free products, information on animal testing and research on other viable testing methods.