although more and more companies are boycotting animal testing, hidden ingredients pop up all over the place - even products stating "no animal ingredients" can contain honey, carmine or lanolin. why choose products not tested on animals? because it prevents the poisoning of millions of innocent animals and more effective methods have been researched to determine irritability and effectiveness. i feel that testing of cosmetic ingredients is unnecessary and the best products for your body are found in plant sources.

toothpaste - basically, all commercial toothpaste is tested on animals, due to a legal obligation that requires toothpastes to be tested on rats to study the effects of flouride on teeth. not all toothpaste contains animal products though. from what i have read, "basic" toothpaste (eg, not whitening or anything) does not contain animal products. however, it will be tested on animals. for vegan toothpaste, try "red seal" from nz - all varities are vegan except for "propolis" and can be bought at the health food shop or coles.

lip balm - most lipbalms contain beeswax. you can make your own using 25% caranauba wax and 75% oil (i used safflower). melt the two together and then put into a lip balm pot. alternatively try something like pure vitamin E oil, or for very chapped lips i use lucas's pawpaw ointment which really helps.

haircare - i am anti-detergent. so you can get some vegan shampoos that are made with detergent but i don't use them cause it's not biodegradable and in my opinion toxic as ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate are absorbed into your body through the skin (and should really not be there!). at the moment i use melrose rainwater soft non-sulfate shampoo. you can buy this at the health food shop. the best vegan shampoo n conditioner i've ever used has been mastey but it's expensive. i have lots of hair so i have to keep my budget down hehe. mastey is good though cause it lasts for ages. gabe washes his hair with my homemade soap and it turns out rad hehehe so if you're like gabe, you can always do that too :)

soap - most soap is made from tallow which is an animal fat and a by-product of the slaughter industry. many companies now make vegetable soaps but they are also tested on animals. also heaps of soap these days isn't really soap at all, but either detergent bars or has things like foaming agents and silicone etc added to it. i make my own soap from scratch at home which works really well, seems to be good for my skin and the good thing is, you know that it's 100% vegan and not full of chemical additives. i'll make a soap page soon :)

deodorant - most deodorant is tested on animals, or contains animal products. a lot of deodorants also contain aluminium, which has been attributed to an increased risk of breast and other cancers. dial deodorant in australia is vegan, and so are deodorants by the body crystal (this works well), trinature, thursday plantation etc. i use the crystal one because i try not to put synthetic or chemical stuff on my skin.

cosmetics - natio claim to be vegan, and as far as i can tell they are (haven't checked all of the makeup though). a variety of other make up is available by mail-order from pangea. aubrey organics also make vegan products.

skin care / moisturiser etc - i find that a good thing to do is use a cold pressed oil on your skin when you get out of the shower. this protects your skin and you don't need to use moisturiser then! i like to use grapeseed oil. natio's moisturisers are vegan, as are some from lush and a variety of health food shop brands are as well

you can get all of these products at either coles/supermarket, health food shop or chemist. for soap making try sugarplum sundries or kathy miller's site.

for a lot of vegan products also try the WASTE NOT WANT NOT shop @ goodwood rd shops, goodwood, south australia.