Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Hot Button Topic: Cruelty-Free Natural Fur Products? Give me a Break!

Before you read this I want to let you know that this is definitely a "hot button" topic and it may be something you disagree with. If you're sensitive or easily offended by someone else's choice, it's probably best not to read on. Please refrain from leaving negative comments. Disagreeing with me is absolutely fine, but being rude about it is not. I'd like to discuss something that has always really bothered me and that I come across constantly. This is my opinion and my opinion only, so please don't feel as though I'm telling you what you need to do or not do ;)

I'd like to go on record saying that I find the term "cruelty-free animal fur" any oxymoron. If you're like me and struggling with your preference for natural fur brushes despite your convictions about fur then own it, why cover it up by saying, "They don't kill the animal for its fur so it's cruelty-free"? To me, living in a cage is cruelty :/

I'm working hard to move over to all vegan brushes, but it's taking time because I find some of my natural fur brushes simply out-perform the synthetics I've tried (and I've tried A LOT). I am proud to say that I have not bought a natural fur brush in over a year, but I haven't switched out all of my natural fur brushes for synthetic ones yet, unfortunately. When I see things like natural fur brushes and mink lashes with the term "cruelty-free" smattered all over them it makes me nuts. Let's not pretend, it is what it is. I feel like saying, "Either own it or switch, but let's not cover it up by easing our consciences with a silly term that doesn't truly apply."

Let's be serious, I don't think they have a giant wildlife refuge for mink or badgers across hundreds of acres native to where you'd find mink/badgers where the caretakers lovingly call to the wild mink or badgers who come bounding into their arms where they allow them to gently brush them for their hair. Odds are, these poor little guys are at fur farms where they're in small cages going nuts and where people come in, rip them from their cages, brush them fast, then throw them back in to rot. And what happens when these little guys get older and their fur is not longer young and lovely? Are they put in a mink or badger retirement home where they spend the rest of their lives in the lap of luxury as payment for their services? Doubt it. In trying to uncover more about where these cruelty-free fur farms are I seem to be hitting virtual wall after wall. If a company came forward and showed where their "cruelty-free" fur came from and it truly was cruelty-free I'd be elated! Absolutely over-the-moon elated! But it seems as though the term "cruelty-free" and some slick marketing as to why their fur is cruelty-free is where the buck stops. 

When it comes to animal testing I absolutely go out of my way to avoid companies that are known for testing on animals. Even drugstore brands like L'Oreal and Maybelline, despite some really fabulous product releases in the last year, are not things you'll find in my collection. My heart breaks over companies like UD choosing to sell in China and therefore complying with their animal testing laws for cosmetics. When will we stop selling our convictions for a dollar?

Again, this is my opinion. I truly believe everyone should make their own educated decisions and feel confident and good about them, so whatever you choose it's your life and your choice. I simply wanted to speak out about something I personally get frustrated with, particularly in the beauty industry.

You can read more about fur farms here (disturbing content).

This is an interested read, though graphic, for anyone wondering why people get so up-in-arms about fur.


  1. Thank you for this.. And I completely agree :) I hate to admit I was once fooled by Cruelty-free Mink lashes. I wanted to believe the animals were in good care but I was just kidding myself. Anyways.. I have now only Faux lashes.

  2. Faux is the best!!!!! Love, love them ;) And you are absolutely not alone. It's so easy to want to believe cruelty-free fur is the answer to our consciences nagging at us. I remember buying some "cruelty-free" brushes years ago and being all "yay" then thinking ... wait, huh? lol. I wish they weren't allowed to market it that way, it's far too misleading :/

  3. Hey there, I understand your point of view and I am an ALF supporter and vegetarian but let me share my experience with you! I used to ride horses when I was a kid and there was a small paint brushes factory near the riding stables. Everytime the horses had their tails and manes (like human hair, it needs to be cut sometimes), the hairs were given to the factory for manufacturing brushes. The local farmers (yes I lived in a countryside) also gave their goats, porks and cows hairs and all of us were given free brushes in exchange. The brushes were of top quality and absolutely cruelty-free as all animals were well treated and fed. Sadly that factory doesn't exist anymore thanks -sic- to cheap brushes from China (people just don't seem to be willing to pay the price for quality) but natural brushes made this way would be fantastic. Of course we all know MAC brushes are made in huge quantities and can't possibly be made like that but hey, it's such a lovely idea to consider. Personnaly, I'd rather pay an oscene amount of cash for absolutely cruelty free natural fur brushes than buying tons of synthetic brushes that are not as soft and pleasant to use.
    BUT! Some syntetic brushes are absolutely fantastic, and taklon works better than natural hairs for cream shadows and foundations.

    1. Hello! Thank you for sharing :) I am also 100% for brushes done in such a completely humane way as long as the animals are kept in immaculate conditions and treated well in every possible way (mentally, physically, emotionally, etc.). I wish I was personally aware of a single company that did this; I would be a customer for life because I really do prefer natural hair brushes! Sadly, all of the companies I know of that mass-produce "cruelty-free" brushes have yet to reveal the source of their "cruelty-free" bristles and since they are mass-produced, I can only assume the bristles come from fur farms and whatnot :/ If anyone does find a genuinely cruelty-free makeup brush company please do share it because I would love to be able to buy natural hair brushes again!


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