Surprisingly non-vegan products


Forum Practitioner
May 17, 2015
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  1. Vegan
Being vegan is pretty black and white when it comes to meat, dairy and wearing animals. But many vegans use animal products sometimes without knowing it. And what about all the animal testing we support through medicines and products that even though aren't using it right now, did use it to get the product you now love. How strict are you? Personally, I'm as strict as I can be.. I do my best and look into everything until I get the hang of how sneaky humans can be with this. I'm getting there, but still learn something new almost every day. It's sad how much we rely on the suffering of others when it's completely unnecessary.

Anyway.. I had a better article a while ago, with a much more thorough and surprising list, but this is a good start. I'll post the other if I come across it again.

20 Everyday Items That Contain Animal Products
I am pretty strict, but I draw the line at products I purchased before I became vegan, as mentioned in a couple of other threads, so some footwear and camping equipment (my mountaineering boots, jacket and various sleeping bags and sleeping mats to name a few items) do not match my vegan lifestyle, but they were purchased long before I became vegan and I don't see a reason to replace them just because I am vegan now. They are not worn out and until they have fulfilled their life expectancy, they will remain in use, as will my down filled quilts and woollen blankets and a couple of woollen items of clothing.

Otherwise, looking at that list of 20 products I am quite relieved to see that I only use 3 of them that contain animal products. I know I need to work on the toothpaste front, but I have to deal with my husband and his reservations on that front as well, so I am working on that one slowly. It is one of the last few areas to cover... until I saw your list.
I guess painting and paint brushes, plus wood glue will need a little work in the future but that does not need to be covered until we actually own our own home. Until then, I don't need to think about that one, but it is surprising the areas that animal products do get into!

I guess the only place I don't draw the line is medicine. I would be dead with out it because I have a number of medical conditions that require routine treatment, but being allergic to dairy products has helped in one way because it keeps lactose based tablet fillers out of my treatment as much as is possible.
I make my own shampoo, conditioner, face scrub, rose oil, and body wash. The ingredients are all vegan friendly, I believe. Baking soda, vinegar, rose petals, coconut milk and oil, and olive oil. I tell myself that if they could do it back before everything was mass produced and ingredients were very straight forward, then why can't I? Unfortunately, there are some things I can't make myself. Those things would include almost everything on that list. Lol
Some of those things I can give up. I don't like fireworks very much, anyway. But I'm obviously going to have to start looking for new recipes to make some substitutes for these things.
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I wish I could find the other list, it's amazing the things we use every day that rely on animals and I wish I could get around them all, but I just can't.

I've got soap and shampoo covered, I don't drive, I use reusable bags, I don't use toothpaste.. you can use pretty much anything though (or nothing), it's the action that's important, plus flossing. Especially when you eat plant based.. teeth practically take care of themselves after that.

Computers? Well, uh.. yeah lol. Good to hear Jobs made sure the majority of his products were vegan friendly though, I'll have to look more into that.
I contacted Colgate yesterday who informed me that all of the toothpaste manufactured for the European market did not contain animal products.

All Colgate toothpaste manufactured in Europe is free from animal ingredients.

So whilst the company may not be too ethical on animal testing, at least in the UK and Europe the toothpaste is OK. I'm just not certain if that means it is vegan or vegetarian! However having looked at the ingredients of the toothpaste, there was only the one ingredient that concerned me and I had already sussed out that it was not of animal origin because the animal origin that it usually is, is from dairy and I would have had an allergic reaction to it if it was from dairy!
There's a few on the list that I knew of and a few that I didn't. Toothpaste was the surprise for me. I'm glad they offered a solution by providing a brand that doesn't contain animal products in it - I'm off to check and see where I can find it online.

Appreciate you sharing the link!
I've just started using Aloedent fluroide free toothpaste the sensitive and whitening are vegan friendly the triple action isn't.
Wow! Thanks for the informative list. I am looking into buying a keratin shampoo, so now I know to be alert.

I became a vegan for health reasons first. I also love nature and am concerned about the cruelty issues. I believe, the more conscious we become about our fellow creations, the better.
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I use vegan shampoo, body wash and toothpaste.
I have a 2 pairs of leather boots and a pair Birkenstocks. All are in good condition so I will continue to use them till they wear out, then I will purchase vegan versions, I know there's vegan versions of doc martens and birks so in a few years I will replace them with vegan products but I can't afford to buy new ones right now.
I'm going to use this opportunity to warn people about co-op juices, then. At least, their 'Truly Irresistible 100% orange juice' is not vegan because they spray their oranges with shellac.

Yes, that's right people, effing juice that isn't vegan. It will even say 'not suitable for vegans' on the bottle if you look more closely (which I didn't think to at first - it's juice!!).