Feature Image by Raphael Lovaski

With the green beauty movement going strong, you’ve probably seen the words “organic,” “vegan,” “clean,” or “cruelty-free” on the packaging of various beauty products. But what constitutes a beauty product as vegan or cruelty-free? Is there even a difference? We break it down below.

“Cruelty-free” simply means there was no animal testing when developing the product. While most cruelty-free products will have the Leaping Bunny logo, it’s important to note that while third-party certifications, like the Leaping Bunny logo, identify cruelty-free brands on their packaging, not all companies take part. So the absence of a logo does not always mean a company tests on animals.

Just because a product is labeled “organic” doesn’t mean that it contains only organic ingredients. In fact, products need just a small percentage of organic ingredients to be able to label themselves as organic! To fully trust that a product is sourced and manufactured with sustainable, organic ingredients, look for the Soil Association Organic logo.

The same goes for vegan beauty products – there are no legal regulations on what constitutes a “vegan” beauty product. Instead, look for products with The Vegan Society logo, which certifies that the product doesn’t contain any animal extracts or animal byproducts in the ingredients or the manufacturing process.

For a beauty product to be considered “clean,” it must not include any sulfates, silicones, phthalates, parabens, pesticides, artificial coloring, or synthetic fragrances. To check a product’s toxicity level, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a good place to start.

xx, The FabFitFun Team