Beautiful Photo Shoot Using Rescued Lab Animals

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Check out the link here to see beautiful photos of rescued lab animals–rats, rabbits, and guiena pigs–with an Alice in Wonderland theme.

Volunteer Attilia Conti with the Italian charity La Collina dei Conigli ONLUS took these pictures to help find the animals homes.

All of the featured animals were rescued from labs, and some have found loving homes.

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Soap.com Has “Natural & Organic” Tab

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I love Soap.com because I am a health and beauty product addict. I also work from home full time, so I’m a bit of a shut in (but in the cozy, happy way, not the scary, unhinged way). On Soap.com, I can search through a huge selection of personal care and household essentials and get free 2-day shipping directly to my doorstep.

And, best of all, Soap.com has a “Natural & Organic” shopping tab. In it, you can an impressive number of products from lots of cruelty-free brands (Toms, Jason, Seventh Generation, Method, and Mrs. Meyers to name just a few). AND once you start searching, there are category menus on the left side of the page. One of those categories is “Cruelty-Free.” How exciting is that?

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What’s cool about that tab is that Soap.com’s research team that’s tracking site hits, views, orders, etc., see how much that tab is accessed by Web users. If enough cruelty-free shoppers like us visit that page and use that tab, the data will show that consumers are looking specifically for natural and cruelty-free products. Which means that they’ll add more of those types of products to keep us coming back. It’s a win for us, a win for the cruelty-free companies, and a win for the animals.

Milani is Now Leaping Bunny Certified

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I have not posted in months because of work deadlines and life in general, but I had to post this because I am SO excited about it. Leaping Bunny has added Milani to its list of cruelty-free companies. (Click here to see Leaping Bunny’s complete list.)

Milani makes beautiful cosmetics for the face, eyes, lips, and nails. The absolute best nail polish I own is Milani Nail Lacquer in Strawberry Fields (a color not available on its site probably because it’s out of season). Compared with the OPI polishes I own, which are more expensive and generally considered to be “salon quality”, this Milani polish has better pigmentation (i.e., fewer coats) and durability.

But just as important as the products’ quality is the products’ availability. Which is the other reason to love Milani. Its products are available at drugstores and grocery stores nationwide and are priced to be affordable (we’re talking $3.99 for nail polish and $5.99 for lipstick). The more cruelty-free products available to most consumers, the better chance we have of voting with our dollars, which leads to legislation banned animal testing for cosmetics.

Thora Birch Calls for an End to Animal Cosmetics Testing

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I love when Cruelty Free International (and any anti-animal testing group) gets mainstream news media coverage. That usually happens when celebrities come out in support of the group. Recently, The Huffington Post Impact blog featured a story about actress Thora Birch (of American Beauty fame) supporting the work of Cruelty Free International and calling for the end of cosmetics testing on animals. Here’s an excerpt of what she says:

It is a shame that in the United States animals can still be subjected to agonizing tests for cosmetics despite the availability of modern non-animal tests. Testing cosmetics on animals is an outdated and unnecessary practice. It’s also cruel. Our nation’s largest trading partner, the European Union, has banned the sale of animal tested cosmetics and proven it is possible to produce safe cosmetics without harming animals.

For over a decade California has required that modern non-animal tests be used to ensure product safety before resorting to cruel outdated animal tests. Now the California legislature has passed the Cruelty Free Cosmetics Resolution calling for an end to cruel cosmetics tests nationwide. I’m proud to join Cruelty Free International and the state of California in calling for a US ban on animal testing for cosmetics.

 

Dryer Sheets Comparison

I’ve tried a few brands and types of dryer sheets and decided to review them all together so you can compare. I’m basing my critiques on 3 criteria: effectiveness, “green”ness, and affordability.

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Honest Dryer Cloths
Rank: A
$6.95 for 32 sheets (each cloth can be used twice)

  • Effectiveness: The cloths are very effective at removing static and making my clothes soft. The fragrance is really nice but not overwhelming.
  • Greenness: Like all Honest products, the cloths are free of SLS, fragrance, dyes, phosphates, 1,4-dioxane, chlorine, DEA, formaldehyde, and caustics and they are biodegradable, hypoallergenic, non-toxic, pH neutral, and vegan.
  • Affordability: These sheet are pretty price, but you can use each cloth twice, so theoretically you get 64 loads in each package.
  • Other: The cloths are pre-moistened. I really like this feature because I sometimes fluff my hang-dry clothes in the dryer, and this moisture creates a little steam that works to remove wrinkles.

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Seventh Generation Natural Fabric Softener Sheets
Rank: C
$4.99 for 80 sheets

  • Effectiveness: The sheets didn’t make a big difference. It got rid of static but didn’t seem to soften my clothes.
  • Greenness: These sheets are unbleached, recyclable, biodegradable, and processed without chemicals containing chlorine; USDA Certified Biobased Product.
  • Affordability: These are SUPER affordable.
  • Other: They’re are made of unbleached paper, so you can compost them after they’ve been through the dryer.

 

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Mrs. Meyer’s Dryer Sheets
Rank: B
$7.99 for 80 sheets

  • Effectiveness: These sheets are moderately effective. My clothes didn’t have static, and they felt a little softer. The basil fragrance is lovely out of the box but doesn’t last on your clothes.
  • Greenness: They are 99% naturally derived and free of phthalates, formaldehyde, artificial colors, parabens, and animal derived ingredients.
  • Affordability: These sheets are on the expensive side.

 

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Method Dryer-Activated Fabric Softener
Rank: A
$7.99 for 1 spray bottle (100 loads)

  • Effectiveness: This spray works really well at softening my clothes and getting rid of static. The fresh air fragrance is pleasant and lasts on your clothes.
  • Greenness: Like all Method products, the spray is free of ammonia, phthalates, chlorine, parabens, phosphates, and animal derived ingredients. And because there’s no sheet, there’s nothing to go in the landfill, and the bottle is recyclable.
  • Affordability: Not the most expensive but not the cheapest.
  • Other: To use, you can spray directly into the dryer once you’re clothes are in. I like to get a microfiber cloth damp, spray that instead, and throw it in the dryer. Alternatively, if you use those wool dryer balls you can spray them.

California Urges U.S. Congress to End Cosmetic Testing on Animals

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Last week, the California Legislature passed the Cruelty Free Cosmetics Resolution, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan support. This resolution

… urges Congress to enact legislation that would establish reasonable deadlines for the nationwide prohibition of animal testing and urges the federal government to mandate testing alternatives which appear to be readily available and effectively utilized.

Check out the article on Huffington Post for more information. I hope that this functions as a tremendous display of support for the Humane Cosmetics Act (House Resolution 4148) that was introduced in March of this year. You can show your support for this bill by going here to sign the petition and going here to ask your representatives to co-sponsor the bill.

Peter Dinklage Supports Cruelty-Free Campaign!

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You may not know this, but Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister) is Cruelty-Free International’s international ambassador? From its website:

I am so pleased to support Cruelty Free International and be part of the global campaign to end cosmetics tests on animals. It is unacceptable that animals continue to suffer around the world, including the United States of America, for the sake of beauty. I appeal to the USA to follow the European Union’s lead and end animal testing for cosmetics.

He’s also a vegetarian. From IMDb:

I like animals, all animals. I wouldn’t hurt a cat or a dog – or a chicken or a cow. And I wouldn’t ask someone else to hurt them for me. That’s why I’m a vegetarian.

I’ve long admired this guy’s acting chops, but now I respect him on a different level!

Refinery29 Article on What “Cruelty-Free” Means

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Check out this concise article about animal testing and the importance of shopping cruelty free. The author shares her personal experience with and feelings about animal testing.

For those of us who are veterans at cruelty-free consumerism, the article may seem perfunctory, but think of it this way: Refinery29 is a wildly popular fashion/entertainment/shopping site. This article is introducing the topic of animal testing to a wide audience and opening the door to cruelty-free living. Thanks, Ashlee Piper, for getting the word out!