Teal and Black Look for Phyrra (and Musings About Cruelty Free Beauty)

Phyrra guest post 1Today I have a guest post over at Phyrra.net! Phyrra is one of the first blogs I found that included indies. I’m pretty sure I stumbled upon her site looking for eyeshadow advice for hooded eyes and have been reading it for a while now. So when she posted in Notoriously Morbid’s facebook group looking for guest posters to do looks using Notoriously Morbid products while she was recovering from eye surgery, I happily volunteered to do a look for her. She has awesome black and teal hair, so I used those colors and am super happy with how it turned out. Jupiter Rain is just a lovely color. Head over to to Phyrra.net for the full face pictures!

Phyrra’s thing is that she only blogs about cruelty free make up, which is honestly something I hadn’t thought much about before I came across her site. Most of the mainstream make up I have is from before I’d even considered that some brands test on animals while others don’t, so it’s a mix of cruelty free brands and brands that test on animals. But, because I respect her beliefs and didn’t want to put something she didn’t support on her blog, I went through my collection and used only cruelty free products in my look for her. (The only exception is my Laura Mercier concealer, which Phyrra lists as a “grey area” brand on her site. But I only have two concealers and dark circles, so I used it anyways.) And the look came out awesome, if I do say so myself!

I then thought back on the purchases I’ve made this year and the things that are still on my wishlist and realized that without really intending to, I’ve sort of unconsciously switched over to preferring cruelty free brands. In fact, every single product on my wishlist right now is cruelty free. A lot of this has been the switch from mainstream make up to indies, which don’t test on animals, but some of it has been my mainstream brand preferences shifting as well. I’ve grown to love brands like Tarte, Urban Decay and Kat Von D, and have less fondness for ones like Benefit or Stila. I’ve even found good replacements for some of my old animal-tested go-to products. (I’ve swapped my Stila Liquid Liner for Kat Von D Tattoo Liner and I’m pretty sure Buxom Lash has replaced Benefit’s They’re Real as my favorite mascara.) When deciding which brands to purchase from here on out, whether they’re cruelty free or not will definitely be a factor. But I’m still ok with using what I have or what I’m given for free. I’m not sure I’m ready to switch over 100%, but I figure a shift is a step in the right direction. If you’re interested in learning more about which brands are cruelty free or not, Phyrra has a list of cruelty free brands and I trust her legwork on it.

MAC is sort of the sticking point for me. I could find dupes for the other products I have that have been tested on animals, but I use their Face and Body Foundation pretty much daily, and I genuinely respect their charity work, particularly the MAC AIDS fund. AIDS is an issue that hits much closer to home for me than animal testing does. Yes, I think it is better to not test on animals than to test, but I don’t get as viscerally upset about it as I know a lot of other people do. (This probably also explains why I am a lapsed vegetarian. Ten years without meat and then I started eating it again when I moved to Korea. Vegetarian Korean food gets repetitive.) But I’ve spent four years living in a country with one of the highest HIV infection rates in the world and have seen firsthand the effect that it can have on people’s lives, both in America and in Tanzania. And so, for me, I’m not ready to write off the company yet. Philosophy is another brand that’s not on Phyrra’s list that makes a staple product of mine (I’ve been washing my face with their Purity cleanser since college) and has a commitment to charitable giving (for women’s mental health issues) that I will probably make an exception for. Your choices might be different. I think that’s ok. This is not my fight, but I support those who care about it more passionately than me, and I figure incremental changes are better than none.

What are your thoughts on cruelty free beauty and animal testing? Do you only buy cruelty free products? If so, did you make the switch in one fell swoop or gradually?

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