Hi friends! It’s been awhile since I posted about beauty products that are animal cruelty-free. I’ve been using these products for a few months now, and they work for me.

Let’s start with Burt’s Bees fragrance-free body lotion, with shea butter and Vitamin E. Burt’s Bees is an example of a company that does not do animal testing, but is not vegan, because their products contain ingredients such as honey, beeswax, milk, or other animal byproducts. Some vegans use honey, some don’t. It’s totally a personal choice – as is my lifestyle, to be as plant-based as much as possible. Anyways, I love this lotion. It moisturizes, is not greasy, and not too thin.

On to facial wash. I found this face wash a year ago and loved it. It’s Yes to Cucumbers Gentle Milk Cleanser with Hydrolyzed Soy Proteins. It’s cruelty-free, but I’m a little unsure if it’s vegan. I did email the company but am still waiting for a reply. I’m guessing that the “milk” part of this face wash is the hydrolyzed soy protein. This facial wash was out of stock in the usual stores I’d go to, but luckily I found it online on Amazon, so have just been getting it there. It smells clean, moisturizes, is good for my finicky, sensitive skin, and does the job.

Mama Bee Belly Butter up at the top of the picture. Again, this is made by Burt’s Bees, which is a cruelty-free company, but not all of its products are necessarily vegan. Side note about stretch marks: you can’t apply a magic lotion to apply to areas prone to stretch marks during pregnancy. The most you can do is to just gain weight steadily (as opposed to quickly), exercise to keep the skin elastic, and moisturize to hydrate and keep the skin supple. I’m currently halfway through my pregnancy (where did the time go?!), try to be active in some way each day (walks at work, gym time a couple times a week, and prenatal yoga), drink loads of water, eat TONS of fruits and vegetables, and slather on this belly butter once daily. So far, so good. And I feel great, too!

Being on the East Coast the past three years always does a number to my skin in the wintertime. This winter, especially. A couple of months ago, it seemed like nothing was keeping it moisturized. Even my regular moisturizer by LUSHImperialis. I even resorted to spreading some coconut oil on my face for some much-needed relief. The skin under my eyes was rough, you could see peeling around my lips, my whole face felt like sandpaper, and I was a hot mess.

I usually moisturize with coconut oil when there are super-dry parts on my body (my feet and hands, usually), but the day after I put coconut oil on my face, lo and behold, a pimple showed up. Kind of irritated, because by eating super plant-based for over a year and a half, my skin was really clear and I had no problems. Until that dang coconut oil! I love that stuff, and use it to brush my teeth with baking soda too, but not on my face. Lesson learned.

I went back to LUSH and told them my facial skin woes. They were really helpful and suggested I try the moisturizer that is a bit heavier than Imperialis, which was Celestial. I used it for a few days, and my skin became less irritated, felt soothed, and I stopped looking like sandpaper. THANK GOODNESS! Since then, I went back to using Imperialis, because the weather is warmer (by warmer, I mean 50 degrees instead of 25 degrees), and all has been dandy with my skin. Whoop! Both moisturizers – Imperialis and Celestial – are vegan and animal cruelty-free. No animal testing. No animal products or by-products used. Both awesome.

So there you go – a look inside my skincare regimen!