Veganism: Can the Beauty Industry Keep Up?

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It’s 2018; veganism is on the rise and no industry can be caught napping. The statistics are overwhelming, sales of vegan food alone have risen 1,500% in the last year, but whilst vegan friendly products are also becoming more available, only 6% of beauty product launches in the UK were vegan certified in 2017. That’s a big gap, especially as we know that Pinterest has reported a 281% increase in searches for Vegan Beauty.

With this in mind, leading hair product distributor, Passion4Hair hosted a panel event to take an honest view on how the industry is performing. Focusing specifically on hair and beauty here’s what they had to say:

Hair

Debbie Digby, owner and founder of Passion4Hair and Managing Director of Feather’s Salon Group, with five salons and a training academy in North Essex, says,

My focus through Passion4Hair is to find unique solutions for hairdressers that give them an edge in their business. Over the last few years there is no doubt that there has been a change in the behaviour and demands of the customer. They want more from their products, but they also want to know where they come from and what they contain, especially in the younger generation.

As a distributor I’ve spent a lot of my waking hours searching for the best performing products especially in this area. It’s been a challenge, as the animal-free products haven’t quite given the same standard we’re after. However the industry has come a long way and it’s often the lesser-known brands that are pushing the envelope. We recommend the following products as outstanding alternatives that are suitable for vegans: Malibu C, Eufora and Sens.Us.

Malibu C: The core of Malibu C's Wellness Beauty Collection is a selection of customized ‘Wellness Hair Care Remedies’ that are 100% vegan, cruelty-free and formulated without gluten, parabens, sulfates, preservatives and fragrances. Malibu C is a great example of a brand that really performs. Their Crystal Gel is a market leader and used in all Vidal Sassoon salon’s before any customer has a colour applied.

Eufora: All Eufora products meet the most rigorous standards in formulation, utilising Certified Organic Aloe along with nearly 75 different natural plant extracts and essential oils, all of which are classified as renewable resources and considered biodegradable. We love their sets of shampoos and conditioners that really deliver on their promise

Sens.Us: Promotes health and beauty, well-being, self-esteem and confidence at all levels, through honest and correct business practices. They make use of renewable energy, local ingredients, and optimises itself for the elimination of waste and purifies waste water on site. We love Sens.Us’ MC2 colour range, which offers a really superior finish over and above what most other bigger brands can.

Beauty

Also on the panel saw Clare Uchima, founder of Majo Medicine and Rose Brown, one of the founders of PHB Ethical Beauty.

As a travelling musician, flying all over the world, I really felt my skin was taking the brunt of my lifestyle. When you’re tired and dehydrated it’s almost impossible to hide it when you don’t have skincare that really performs. After a sabbatical in India in 2014, where I learned so much about different natural ingredients, I started to mix and make my own products. They were a bit touch and go to start with, but I’m now so proud of our final batch. It’s 100% cruelty-free, vegan products that are packed full of potent, high quality, organic ingredients and made in the UK.

For me it’s so exciting to see how much easier it is to be a ‘vegan’ today in all aspects of life, but especially beauty. There are so many incredible natural ingredients out there and there’s no excuse to still be harming animals in this day and age. As a brand owner though there are still challenges we have to face. Although we know all our ingredients are cruelty-free, obtaining the accreditation is difficult and support for smaller brands isn’t always there. - Clare Uchima.

My partner and I started out owning a shop in Birmingham, but we couldn’t believe how difficult it was to source products that were completely cruelty-free. We could see there was a market and we knew we could do a good job. Today we have the largest range of natural, vegan, cruelty-free, alcohol free (Halal certified) beauty products in the world.

For us certification was essential, and although the process was long and hard, we went through it as it was important. What’s interesting now is to see how all the big brands are responding to the rise in this culture. Although they may have one range that’s cruelty-free, their brand isn’t, and the customer is still building their profits that allow this behaviour to continue. They may make the noise but it’s still the new, smaller brands driving the change. - Rose Brown.  

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