Arbonne – A Vegan and Gluten Free Company

One of the things that many people struggle with when going vegan is the transfer onto cruelty free cosmetics and toiletries. In the latest issue of Vegan Life magazine Sunny Subramanian from Vegan Beauty Review helped to demystify the changeover with an article on natural, vegan beauty. One of the pitfalls that a lot of people have is the difference between cruelty free and vegan. Many products now are cruelty free which means they’re not tested on animals but this doesn’t guarantee that they are free from animal ingredients such as Lanolin (from wool), Carmine (crushed beetles) or Collagen (from animal placenta). As vegans we are looking for products which fit both the cruelty free and vegan criteria and in the list of vegan beauty brands provided in the article I came across one that stood out above all of the others.

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Arbonne are not only a vegan and cruelty free company. They are also gluten free and free from other nasties such as parabens, formaldehyde, petrolatum, synthetic dyes and artificial colours and flavourings. This makes them perfect for anyone with allergies or even those of us who are just trying to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle.

I was recently given the opportunity to try some of their products. I highlighted that some of the most difficult things to find as a vegan were hair products for coloured hair and good lip balms and met with one of Arbonne’s consultants, Jo for a chat about their products and what they have to offer. I came home with a thick catalogue of beautiful products, a lip salve and some shampoo and conditioner for coloured hair.

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This lip moisturiser no longer seems to be on their website but is similar to the Liquid Sunshine Lip Balm that is now available. Most well-known lip balms you can buy in the UK are packed full of beeswax and lanolin so I’m always ready to give a new vegan product a go. Many coeliacs are also worried about gluten in their lip products as even the slightest bit of ingested gluten can cause severe problems. This balm therefore covers all bases! It is uncoloured and has a very mild and natural fragrance as would be expected with its natural ingredients. It goes on very smoothly and leaves your lips feeling very soft and also quite tingly! There is a glossy aspect to the balm too so it leaves a nice shine whilst also protecting from the sun.

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The haircare range I tried is called Pure Vibrance and has been developed for use on coloured hair. In the range is a shampoo, conditioner, hair masque, texturizing mousse, serum and a hair spray. I use semi-permanent hair dye so it generally washes out quite quickly. I noticed when lathering this into my hair that not much dye seemed to be coming out which was an excellent sign. There is a citrusy type fragrance in the shampoo and conditioner which leaves your hair smelling fresh and clean. I was impressed with the quality of these products and my colour didn’t seem to wash out any sooner than it usually would with other non-vegan coloured hair shampoos.

All in all the brand covers a lot of bases with cosmetics, skin care and even nutritional products available. It is on the more luxury end of cosmetics with a large bottle of shampoo setting you back around £26 but the products are so good they’re worth it! There is also a sense of safety when using these cosmetics as you know they are fully vegan, environmentally friendly and gluten free.

To find out more about the differences between vegan and cruelty free cosmetics and how to refresh your vegan make up look for Spring grab a copy issue 4 of Vegan Life magazine!

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Should Vegans Eat Honey? – Vegan Life Issue 3

When you tell somebody you’re vegan and they ask you what it entails the honey aspect is usually what tips them over edge to thinking you’re ridiculous. “What harm can a bit of honey do? The bee’s give it to us for free!” is one of the most common arguments I hear. It’s not just between vegans and meat eaters either, I’ve seen many vegans arguing about honey online. So what’s the real answer?

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Vegan Life Magazine have tried to tackle the controversial argument in their January/February issue by comparing the for and against arguments. As usual they have left it up to their readers to decide what to believe but I don’t think this is a difficult decision at all.

The yes camp use the argument that not eating honey is what gives vegans such a bad name. People think we’re pedantic and over the top. Why do we care about bees? It can’t have escaped your attention that bees are in dramatic decline all over the world. Colony collapse disorder is causing hives to literally become empty shells overnight and scientists are baffled as to why. It is thought that it could be pesticides which are killing off our bees or possibly the changes to their natural environment. What is certain is that the extinction of bees would be extremely dangerous to human kind with many of our foods disappearing with them as they are not being pollinated.

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Honey is a natural food and can be harvested without harming the bees but unfortunately that usually isn’t the case. Bee’s create honey so that they have food to eat over the winter when pollen is hard to come by. If we take that honey we have to then feed them with an artificial alternative so that they can still feed. This is usually made with processed sugar, a very unnatural alternative. Honey is extremely nutritious which is one of the reasons we take it, can you imagine what happens to the bees that are fed this ridiculous alternative?

To keep up with the demand for honey beekeepers often add new layers to the hives so that the bees carry on reproducing and therefore produce more honey from their offspring. This is not natural and causes increased stress and often death. A bee would rather work itself to death than let it’s offspring die and yet the honey isn’t going anywhere near the young but being taken for humans to enjoy instead.

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The vegan lifestyle is about caring for animals and not taking advantage of them for our own benefit. While people may argue that keeping bees is stopping them from becoming extinct, nothing could be further from the truth. Keeping these vulnerable insects in hives and stealing the food they would give to their children is not what I call care. Someone who exploits bees by eating their honey cannot call themselves a vegan.

Wildcard Wednesday (MOFO #3) – Should Vegans Eat Eggs from Rescued Hens?

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Welcome to day 3 of Vegan MOFO! My theme for the month is making recipes from non-vegan books both vegan and gluten free. However, on Wildcard Wednesdays I will be taking a break from my theme to discuss topics about veganism.

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I hope you’ve come across the brilliant new vegan magazine that hit the shelves this month! It’s full of recipes and insightful articles and is a thought provoking read from cover to cover. One of the interesting articles in the first issue of Vegan Life was a discussion called “If you have rescued hens, is it acceptable to eat their eggs?”

In my opinion eating any kind of eggs is against the key principle of veganism which is that we don’t eat animal products. No exceptions! This does pose the question of what to do with eggs that are lain by your rescued chickens. The article argues that food waste is a huge problem in this country and therefore throwing edible eggs away would be criminal.

I agree with the point that if you eat eggs you cannot call yourself a vegan. But is the label more important than the lifestyle? I’d like to know your opinions on this controversial topic! Would you eat eggs?

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Vegan MOFO 2013 – Why I Don’t Eat Eggs

Win A Year’s Subscription to Vegan Life Magazine!

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The whole of the vegan community is currently buzzing in anticipation for the new Vegan magazine which will be hitting UK shelves in just a few days! Vegan Life magazine will be packed full of vegan recipes, nutritional information, in depth articles, interviews with vegan celebrities and much more. It aims to “bring vegan into vogue” and will be available in WHSmiths, Sainsbury’s or Tesco store as well as wholefoods shops. It will also be available in a digital format.

I’m giving you the chance today to enter to win a year’s subscription to the magazine starting from the first issue which is released in September. To enter this competition please click on the link below and don’t forget to leave a comment on this post and tell me which part of the magazine you’re most looking forward to!

Enter Here!

 

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Vegan Life Magazine – A New Vegan Magazine in the UK!

Vegan Life – A New Vegan Magazine in the UK!

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I don’t know about you but I spend around £10 a month buying vegetarian magazines. I buy them for their recipes, their articles and the adverts of upcoming new veggie products. Much of what is included in these magazines is not transferable to my diet or lifestyle as a gluten free vegan though and I’ve been dreaming of a vegan magazine hitting our newsagents.

Well I’m here to let you know about a new magazine that’s launching in September which will cater to current vegans as well as helping along those who are trying to change the way they live. Vegan Life magazine aims to “bring vegan into vogue”.

The new magazine will contain some beautiful vegan recipes which will include gluten free and raw foods, making it even more accessible to those with specific dietary requirements. Vegan Life also recognises that being vegan is about more than just the food and so will be packed full of nutritional information, in depth articles, interviews with vegan celebrities and much more. I’m particularly excited for the animal free fashion and beauty pages as well as the tips on veganising your favourite foods.

The idea is to invite everybody to try the vegan lifestyle and enjoy all of the amazing parts! Whether that’s delicious food, increased health or just being a part of the change that we are helping to bring to the world, this magazine will help you along the way.

Vegan Life will be available in print from your local WHSmiths, Sainsbury’s or Tesco store as well as wholefoods shops. It will also be available in a digital format.

As a Vegan Life blogger I will be updating you on all of the news on this fabulous new magazine so keep your eyes peeled. Are you as excited as I am?