Vegan K-Beauty Products
With the popularity of a vegan lifestyle continuing to grow, many Korean skincare companies are now focusing on the vegan beauty market, with some brands even focusing solely on vegan formulations.
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In line with the growing trend towards cruelty-free skincare and makeup (cosmetic testing on animals has been officiallyoutlawed in Korea), brands are now firming their stance that no animals need to have suffered for your beauty at any stage of the product’s lifecycle.
Veganism is a lifestyle that excludes use of animal products for food, clothing, or other purpose (including skin care and makeup). Vegan products do not use egg, milk, snail extract, bee by-products, or any other animal product.
Contrary to popular belief, Vegan is not the same thing as cruelty-free, although vegan products may be cruelty free.
“Cruelty-free” implies that the product was nottested on animals. It is possible for a product to be vegan, but not cruelty-free and vice versa.
Even though Korea has been 100% cruelty free since 2018, mainland China still requires animal testing of cosmetics that are sold in brick and mortar stores in mainland China. Thankfully, products directly mailed to consumers from overseas for personal use do not require animal testing. Hong Kong does not require animal testing and therefore imported products that are sold through Hong Kong for personal use do not have to be animal tested.
If you’re vegan, it can sometimes be tricky to work out whether the cosmetics you use are 100% vegan. Here’s some hidden skincare ingredients to look out for:
Collagen: There are several types of collagen commonly used cosmetics, one of them being bovine collagen (which is derived from pigs). Make sure that the collagen you’re using is derived from plants or is synthetic.
Lanolin: Lanolin comes from sheep’s wool, and is a common ingredient used in hydrating formulas.
Bee and Honey by-products: Keep an eye out for beeswax, honey, propolis and royal jelly, all of which are used in many natural skincare products thanks to their high antioxidant properties.
Squalene: Not to be confused with “squalane”, squalene is commonly extracted from shark liver oil. Make sure that the product you are about to use contains vegan squalene instead, which is derived from olives and wheat germ.
Pearl:Pearls are not vegan because they are a product from an animal, namely an oyster.
A wide range of Korean skincare brands now have a selection of products that do not contain animal by-products. Try:
All of their products are ethically made, sourced from humane supply chains, are cruelty-free and not sold in China.
ALL of their products are dermatologist-tested, cruelty-free, EWG verified, vegan, and hypoallergenic with zero toxins. Perfect for those with sensitive skin.
Benton’s Aloe vera line is plant-based and great for the skin. Benton itself is certified cruelty free by the PETA and specializes in natural beauty products that contain high percentages of active ingredients. Benton avoids parabens, mineral oil, alcohol, benzophenone, chemical preservatives and steroids.
The brand’s new PURITO Centella Green range is free of harmful additives, animal ingredients and animal testing. Purito itself is a 100% cruelty-free brand that uses ingredients that are EWG Green level safe, toxin/chemical-free with packaging that is environmentally friendly.
Excluding their propolis and snail products, iUnik’s minimalist style skincare products use natural, plant-based ingredients to create their toners, serums, cleansers, etc.
iUNIK Centella Bubble Cleansing Foam: This gentle pH balanced cleanser replaces ordinary water with 69% Cica water to softly cleanse skin. The micro-bubble formula is ideal for all skin types and the soft foam helps the skin retain moisture.
iUNIK Vitamin Hyaluronic Acid Vitalizing Toner: this revitalizing post-cleanse toner contains Hyaluronic Acid (45%) and Sea Buckthorn Extract (5%). It offers deep hydration while nourishing and soothing sensitive skin.
iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Toner is a dual-function toner that is for acne-prone and sensitive skin. Star calming ingredients clean and clear.
Dr Ceuracle Tea Tree 95 Essence: This cult Korean beauty product alleviates uneven skin tone. It also minimises redness and irritation and improves the complexion. Containing 800 times more Vitamin C than apples, it leaves skin feeling refreshed, rejuvenated and radiant.
COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence: COSRX’s hit Snail Mucin Essence is unfortunately not vegan, but this alternative is! With star ingredients including galactomyces ferment filtrate and niacinamide to reduce dark spots and create a super-radiant complexion it’s a great product to add to your routine.
Subi Perfect Pimple Patch: This luxury hydrocolloid pimple patch is the thinnest, most invisible patch on the market. If you get pimples in hard-to-reach places then these are your patches. The thinness, stickiness and absorptive powers of Subi’spatches means they stay in place long enough to effectively tackle the pimples that other patches can’t.
iUNIK Beta Glucan Power Moisture Serumis a super-charged ampoule. It nourishes and hydrates dry skin while improving the skin’s barrier function with star ingredient Beta Glucan.
Purito Centella Green Level Eye Cream– strengthens, brightens and fortifies the gentle skin around the eyes. It will leave skin around the eyes plump, hydrated and bright.
D’alba Peptide No Sebum Repair Cream: packed with peptides and amino acids to calm skin and regulate oil production.
iUNIK Beta Glucan Daily Moisture Creamis a super-charged moisturiser that supremely nourishes and hydrates skin.
Benton Goodbye Redness Centella Mask - If you’re blemish prone, these masks are ideal for bringing down redness.
Take the fuss out of shopping for your vegan cosmetics with STYLE STORY’s vegan collection.
This collection includes everything you need to get started on your Korean skincare routine using 100% vegan, cruelty free products.
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