Although It would be impossible to live a completely cruelty-free lifestyle as animal exploitation is engraved deeply into many elements of society, many people are unaware of the cruel practice of animal testing and the exploitation animals suffer. Starting a cruelty-free lifestyle may seem overwhelming at first but there are a few steps to achieve a kinder way of living.

  1. Eat Plant-Based

The biggest change a person can make in in order to live a cruelty-free lifestyle is to opt for a plant-based diet. Although by definition a vegan is someone who avoids animal exploitation at all costs, a plant-based diet is a great way to start. According to Viva, a vegan campaign charity, a billion farmed animals are killed for food consumption in the UK each year. If 5% of the population adopted a plant-based diet, 50 million animals could be saved every year.

Rickard Daun, who owns Scandinavian vegan restaurant Daun’s Deli in Hackney, knows a lot about the benefits a plant-based diet can have for animals, “The industry will and must take action and produce more environmentally friendly products; this will benefit climate change firstly but also have a positive impact on the welfare of animals and also the environment they live in,” says Rickard.

  • Switch Beauty Brands

There’s nothing beautiful about testing on animals but sadly many cosmetic companies still do. It can also be confusing to know which companies are cruelty-free as some brands ‘green wash’ their products with logos that say ‘vegan’, these logos are created by the company, but they are not official logos such as the Vegan Society approved logo. Customers may believe that because the ingredients are ‘vegan’ the product is cruelty-free.

Gresa Atic, 26, a professional makeup artist and beauty blogger, hopes to see all beauty brands in the near future become cruelty-free. Having been in the beauty industry for many years I have seen a lot of changes for the better! I can proudly say I work for a beauty brand that is cruelty free (Huda Beauty)” says Gresa.

She reveals her top cruelty-free makeup brands: “The top brands that I love to use for my clients are Bare minerals, Hourglass, Chantecaille and Cover FX, many of which are Vegan as well – on the cheaper scale you have Elf cosmetics and The Ordinary.

  • Avoid Animal Exploitation

As hard as it is to think about it, most animals seen in the entertainment industry and leisurely attractions become tamed through a cruel and harsh up bringing or forced into submission through captivity. Behind the screens and closed doors of these lucrative businesses, such as zoos, aquariums and animal racing, you will find that CEO’s tend to leave the feelings of these animals last on the list of proper procedure and profit at the top. 

  • Choose Conscious Fashion

Leather has always been a popular item in fashion, from trendy leather jackets to the most popular branded trainers, but there are many vegan brands, and some mainstream brands are starting to bring out vegan alternatives. In winter people turn to wool coats or puffer jackets filled with down (duck feathers) or even fur which can be sourced in the cruellest ways. The brand Canada Goose is infamous for the cruel slaughter of coyotes for its fur and has often been the forefront of many animal rights campaigns and protests. Check the labels and opt for cotton or other natural or synthetic materials when buying clothes.