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Hi, I've been doing the vegan thing since March, although I was previously a vegetarian. I have no vegan friends and generally most of my friends think I'm crazy for living off juices and smoothies! I'm hoping someone might be happy to lend a bit of advice every now and then.
I'm also struggling finding vegan (cruelty free) products for the sort of stuff you use every day without really thinking about like washing up liquid, shampoo etc. I'm in the UK and hoping someone might be able to tell me where to find stuff here.
Thank you!

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Hi Catherine! Im from Australia but recently visited the UK. I found some cool places to eat and shop whilst I was there. My favourites were Vegan Cross in Kings Cross (vegancross.com), they make great sandwiches and sell vegan clothes and shoes and products and Vantra Vitao which is a pay-by-weight restaurant with an array of raw and cooked vegan foods. I also used the website veganlondon.co.uk to try many other places from Brixton to Camden. 

I like to buy Desert Essence shampoo and conditioner, its more of a conventional looking product but has the following benefits:


Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulfates
Artificial Fragrances or Colors
Glycol or Petroleum-based Ingredients
Animal Testing


Wheat & Gluten Free
Renewable Sources
Cruelty Free

I buy them from iHerb.com.

I recommend a fluoride-free toothpaste. There are many varieties in store and online. Look for one with simple and natural ingredients.

For beauty products I use the concealer ("Un-cover up") from RMS beauty. They deliver worldwide, last a long time and are amazing with really simple ingredients, no animal testing and organic 


Hope this helps


Hi Alyce,
Thank you so much, that's brilliant. I'm getting there slowly, trying different things. I tried the 'no poo' method for a bit but I definitely prefer having a bit of shampoo and conditioner so I'll try Desert Essence. I get up to London occasionally too so I'll definitely check out Vegan Cross.
I really appreciate all the replies - I don't feel quite so alone!
Oh wow! You're really natural! This is my aim but I think I need to build up gradually! I'm going to give the cucumber deodorant a try though.
What you've done is amazing, we are generally all so reliant on so many products. I'm completely in awe of you!
Thanks for your reply,
Yo, I'm in the UK too! I don't know how much help I will be with shampoo and stuff, but shoot me a message if you need help maybe we can figure it out together...
Thank you! I've done a Dr Bronners order but so far I'm kind of just relying on Holland and Barratt and Lush. Let me know if you find any other good shops!

Hi Catherine,

I can relate as I am the only one in my family, circle of friends etc. who is vegan and especially since it's so new, they think this is a fad (but they'll see).  It's challenging but I figure eventually when I become an example (glowing skin, happy, lean body etc.) they will want what I have and will come around.  

I've only been at this a few months myself.  I have done a great deal of research into natural products. I have gradually changed over all of my cosmetics, soaps, toothpaste, cleansers etc. so I can point out a few products. I used to be addicted to cosmetics, skin care products etc but since adopting this lifestyle I have lost interest in it. I use a few key things but otherwise I use a cloth and warm water to wash my face and some coconut oil on my face at night.  I also put coconut oil in my hair at night as a deep conditioner.

RMS Beauty   http://www.rmsbeauty.com/shop/index.php

Coconut oil based vegan makeup. It's really lovely.  

Live Clean http://www.live-clean.com/

inexpensive vegan shampoos that are available in most places at least in Canada. 

Wondercloth:  http://www.wondercloth.com/products/wonder-cloth

I use this little cloth without any soap and just warm water. It takes off all makeup and leaves my skin nice and fresh.  No harmful chemicals, no waste and saves a lot of money.

Jason Powersmile Whitening Toothpaste http://www.jason-personalcare.com/product/powersmile-peppermint

Hope this helps

Hi Gayle,
This is brilliant! Thank you. I'll try the wonder cloth for sure as make up removal is something I haven't quite figured out yet. I have definitely noticed an improvement in my skin since going vegan, and I've lost weight but my hair was falling out quite a lot. I think from looking at my chronometer that I was not getting enough calcium so I've started adding almond milk to all my smoothies, have you had any issues with this?
Thanks so much for your reply,

Hiya, no I haven't noticed hair loss at all.  In fact, my hair seems to be softer and healthier than it's been in a long time.  I use Theraneem shampoo & conditioner. Here is the link http://organixsouth.com/theraneem.html  

I haven't lost any weight so far unfortunately but I'm going to give it more time to see what happens. 

Isn't calcium in broccoli? I was addicted to almond milk and people on this board told me it's too high in fat.

I'm based in the UK (London) and very happy to help - been vegan for years, maybe 5 or 6 now (not 100% sure when I made the full transition from veggie to veeg).

When I first went vegan, I went to all the vegan-friendly places ('cranky' independent retailers, H&B, Planet Organic - no Whole Foods at the time) and bought all my gear from there.  But then I realised, after scouring ingredient list after ingredient list for so many years, that it would be way easier to make everything myself - as they take little making.  You just need some raw ingredients.

For example:

Face: I cleanse my face with 100% pure, organic, cold-pressed grapeseed oil washed off with a hot muslin cloth (the Oil Cleansing Method). Then tone with a few spritzes of pure rosewater.  Then moisturise (though I don't need it really, it's more for the potential wrinkle-prevention as I won't be a spring chicken forever) with a dab of 100% pure, organic, cold-pressed rosehip oil.  None of these oils adversely affect my skin in the slightest re congestion, and none are comedogenic, but you do need to find what works for you.  Often oleic oils can be congestive versus linoleic oils (the ones I've listed thus far are the latter) depending on your skin type.  I highly recommend against coconut oil on the face as it's confirmed comedogenic, so more likely to block your pores - but saying that, there are instances of people using this on their face for years with no ill effect.  I personally wouldn't risk it.  If you want to scrub, baking soda with water works, as does some finely ground sugar mixed in with your cleansing oil.  For masks, you can get rhassoul (or similar - whatever works for your skin type) clay, and just mix that with a little water and paint it on.

Body: cleanse with plain castille soap, which you can fragrance with your choice of essential oil (you can also use this on your face too, if you want to keep it super simple/limit your routine and your skin's fine with it) and moisturise with 100% organic cold-pressed coconut oil OR pure, organic, shea butter.  Or similar - you get my drift.  You just need one, pure product.  Deo, if you even need it with all the fruity goodness you're consuming, is easy to make with a little baking soda, cacao butter, coconut oil, essential oils - check out Crunchy Betty, I've made a few of hers and they smell incredible - and work too!

Hair: I tried that whole baking soda/apple cider vinegar no 'poo thing and man, did it ever ruin my hair.  It was like straw, no matter how many different combinations/strengths I tried, no matter how many weeks in between washes I left it.  I gave it 4 months, then couldn't take the rats' look nest any more (and definitely couldn't take the Worzel Gummidge jokes any more!) and so switched up to Ayurvedic herbs.  I mean - how awesome does Indian girls' hair generally look, right?  Same principle as the traditional no 'poo method, just way more moisturising to your hair and nourishing to your scalp - for me, at least.  Agree re moisturising mask with coconut oil.

Fangs: Baking soda (not too much, I find it can irritate my gums, so out of the 3 times a day I brush my teeth, one will be water only) followed by a sea salt water rinse to kill any remaining bacteria.  Flossing in there obvs, whenever you can be arsed.  Being English too, that's unlikely to be more than once a day at best, right? Snigger.

I just do a bulk order on Amazon for all this stuff, it lasts forever, takes no effort, the ingredients are so pure, not tested on animals, there's nothing added to anything - you're simply buying basic ingredients, most of which you could eat and would do you some good on some level!  Though I highly recommend against doing so, natch.  And of course, ultimately, you will save money in the long run, as well as keeping things as pure as they can possibly be.

Make up: Urban Decay!  There are others, and admittedly this isn't the most pure brand you can get, but it is vegan and I love the extensive range.  I love me some sparkly eye shadow and glittery eye liner!

And as one of the other respondents said (apologies, I forget who, but it was a great response!), household ingredients - you really don't need much more than the basic, raw materials they proposed.  There are a couple of brands that I sometimes get from Sainsbury's, as my boyfriend's not into this whole thing, and he feels more comfortable/reassured with more conventional products - Method and Ecover.  Still fit the brief, as far as I'm aware, so I don't mind indulging him (I'm such a good girlfriend!)

I know it sounds overwhelming 'making' your own stuff, but the reality is - you're not really making anything, just using natural, raw ingredients!  Super easy, I promise.  And Amazon will be your friend here - huge volumes, great value, pure products, delivered right to your door.  It couldn't be any easier.  Simples!

Melinda, thank you so much, this is fabulously useful. I just hadn't really considered making my own, I have always been a bit of a sucker for buying cosmetics and face creams and stuff. But this will not only be a far more ethical choice but probably save me tons of money too. I am almost a bit scared to let go of the expensive anti wrinkle creams in case I start looking old!
Really useful to know about Urban Decay too, I had no idea. I'm using Ecover stuff at the moment although it makes no mention on the bottle about not testing on animals, I don't know if you know?
I'm with you on the no poo thing. I completely admire people who do it but I do like my hair to be silky. I'll try the herbs, I've not heard of them before. I'm currently using the Dr Organics from H and B but it's so expensive.
Thank you so much for replying, you've been really helpful. I may have more questions to come if you don't mind!

Of course my love!  Whatever you need, whenever you need it.  I'd love to be one of those vegans that literally just splashes a bit of water on their faces every now and again and looks (and feels) fantastic, but what can I say, I love grooming myself in the hope that I can look young and perky forever!  Plus, the delights of silky hair as you say, natch.

Ecover have never - and apparently will never - test on animals.  However, the reason they don't have any sort of stamp on their products to say so is because for one of their products, while testing the environmental impact (or something) they had to test some of their ingredients on Daphnia (which are microscopic water fleas).  As a compromise with my ever-understanding and patient boyfriend, I've had to make my peace with that, and don't actually use it myself - he does though.  

Hi Im in UK.  Feel free to ask me stuff n chat :) I used to b a huge cosmetic junky lol but now the only product i buy is conditioner. Anyway ive always used Holland & Barratt, coz its convenient with  a shop in most towns, reasonable price, and pretty much everything i have ever needed. u can buy shampoo, conditioner, lipbalm, moisturiser...all that sort of stuff. Dr Organic has huge range of stuff and usually vegan (although double check for vegan symbol on packaging as some have honey or beewax in them). There are also other brands there too.  If you want makeup i think Barry M are vegan..u can get in superdrug, boots etc. Body shop is not vegan.  I used to buy lots stuff, now i use nothing or make it myself. Havent worked out hair conditioner yet....my last challenge. Enjoy! feels good to know ur not rubbing in bits of animals on ur body :)




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