September 2, 2010
A little over a month ago, I made a commitment to purge my household – and my life – of products that are tested on animals. I heard about the 120 beagles who were rescued on July 4th from a bankrupt testing lab in New York, and was absolutely heartbroken to think that they had never been outdoors, chased a ball or run with other dogs. They had never been allowed to be dogs; they were just test subjects.
I’ve been vegetarian for 16 years, and 99% vegan for the last 8 months, so it seemed inconsistent that I avoid eating meat, dairy and eggs because I don’t want to be a party to an animal’s suffering, but I’m doing exactly that when I buy my favorite Loreal mascara. Or Charmin toilet paper. Or Garnier hair color.
So I decided to get with the program and clean out my house. Care to know how it’s going? I’m not gonna lie; it’s a bit tough here and there. I have these random conflicted conversations with myself…
Maybe I’ll just buy the Charmin toilet paper one more time, then I’ll buy Seventh Generation.
No, you’re a hypocrite. You said you were committed.
I am, but it’s TOILET PAPER for cryin out loud! I can’t buy crappy TOILET PAPER! No one will know if I buy it just once more.
You’ll know. You’ll make one exception, then it’ll be two, then fourteen. Do it 100% or don’t do it all.
Yeah, but I can’t find a new mascara that I like. I have to have a good mascara! You can’t expect me to sacrifice everything!
If you buy that mascara, you’re responsible for poking the wand into a bunny’s eye! Don’t do it! Don’t do it! There are plenty of other mascaras out there that you haven’t tried yet. Don’t be a quitter.
Well, what about my Clorox Toilet Wand? Do I have to go back to having a drippy germy toilet brush in my bathroom?
Stop being a baby! Are you committed to living without contributing to animal suffering, or are you committed to whining?
And so it goes.
To be completely honest, it’s easier to replace some products than others.
- Method and quite a few other companies make cleaning products that are cruelty-free.
- The Seventh Generation laundry detergent that I bought is happily cheaper than Tide!
- I’ve tried 3 mascaras already, and am not in love with any of them, but I have others to try and am confident there is a great mascara out there that is not animal-tested.
- I found a shaving cream that smells heavenly, like coconuts, and feels like buttah!
On the other hand, I’m having some big challenges.
- The biggest is with paper products. I’m pretty picky about the brands of TP, paper towels and napkins I buy; not to mention those, you know – feminine products – and I haven’t found any good replacements for them yet. There don’t seem to be many options at all to choose from. Surely, there has to be a solution! The search continues…
- I’m also wondering what to do about my Swiffer Wet Jet that I dearly love. Could there be a way to still make use of it since I already have it, without buying any more liquid or pad refills? Those things were darn expensive anyway.
As I test more products and find excellent cruelty-free products, I’m going to assemble a list that will hopefully help someone else in my position. I don’t want to blow smoke at you and tell you this process is a piece of cake, but it’s worthwhile and I’m committed. Still whining a little now and then, because apparently I’m a much bigger brand-ho than I realized, and I like things the way I like them. But I’m still committed!
I’m really hoping that some of you will have some suggestions for me! If you do, PLEASE send them my way and I’ll pay it forward!