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    • Are vegans trending in cosmetics as well as diet? Hurray!

      “Beauty follows food because we use a lot of the same ingredients,” said Tata Harper, the founder of a namesake natural beauty brand that’s predominantly vegan. “If they’re good to ingest, then they’re typically great to apply topically.”

      Interesting to note that there can be a difference between vegan and cruelty-free. Or a product can be both.

      I was shocked to see what animal-derived ingredients can be found in beauty products besides the common ones. How about "squalene (shark liver oil), carmine (crushed-up beetles), gelatin (cow or pig bones, tendons or ligaments), allantoin (cow urine), ambergris (whale vomit) and placenta (sheep organs)."

      Nice to see that less animal testing is being done as well!

    • Ewwww.... I thought that article might be exaggerating so I looked up some others:

      Red cochineal beetles, when dried and crushed, produce a powder called carmine, which is used as an all-encompassing dye in red foods like candy, ice cream, and yogurt. Though it previously slipped under the radar as "artificial coloring," the FDA has required manufacturers to explicitly list carmine on food labels since early 2011.

      Edible shellac, also known as confectioner's glaze, coats most hard, shiny candy, with the notable exception of M&Ms. It's made from the excretions of female lac bugs (Kerria lacca).

      Gross. There was another conversation about eating bugs in the future which I thought was unlikely, but I guess we're already a little bit there.

    • Oh, no. Just checked some of my favorite hard candies (such as Jelly Belly) and they all have confectioner's glaze in them. No idea that came from insects. Yuck. Guess I will have to stick with dark chocolate (at least until I find out something in it comes from insects as well).

    • So, having worked in a chemistry lab, I have a different view here. Any food additive (including colors and flavors), whether “natural” or “artificial” is typically highly chemically processed and removed from its origins. Either it’s isolated from a natural product or synthesized from other chemicals. The end result is is nutritionally equivalent (though not the emotional equivalent... since some people hate the word “artificial” while the same people might find out that “natural” means “from beetles.”)

      To me, shellac/confectioner’s glaze is probably a step down from honey but in the same boat. If you’re worried about harming insect, maybe stay away. But unless you’re eschewing all additives, this one is only distinct because it sounds grosser on paper. 🤷🏼‍♀️