#FurFreeBritain

Hi everyone!

I hope you all are well 🙂

Today I wanted to discuss the issue of animal fur in the U.K with you all. Although the last fur farm in the U.K has been closed since the past 14 years (since 2003), there have still been numerous occassions where real fur is still being misleadingly sold here in Britain. How? Through imported fur that has been mislabelled and sold as faux fur to consumers in the U.K.

The unnecessary suffering of animals for fur fashion is deplorable, whether the animal involved is a cat, a dog or a seal, whose fur is already banned from UK trade by EU regulations, or a coyote, a fox or a raccoon dog, whose fur is currently still allowed. There’s still uncertainty of whether the retailers buying are aware of the problem at hand, and whether there are any thorough checks to ensure that the fur is indeed faux – this gray area is one of the main factors in the reasons for the distribution of animal fur.

#FurFreeBritain

Despite the fact that opinion polls show continually high levels of public disapproval of fur – more than 80% believe that it’s unacceptable to buy and sell animal fur in this country, real fur is still creeping its way into the market due to false labelling (or what I like to call faux labels) and less restrictions on different animals. Regardless of where you stand when it comes to Brexit, one thing that we can all (hopefully) agree on is that Brexit can provide us with an excellent opportunity to close our borders to the cruel, unnecessary, outdated fur trade, and lead the way as the world’s first fur-free nation!

The Humane Society International have created a petition to our government specifically to tackle the problem of the import of real fur. The #FurFreeBritain petition is not only to retain a UK import ban on cat, dog and seal fur during Brexit negotiations, but also to extend that ban to cover all animals killed for their fur.

The difference between real fur and faux fur?

Before signing the petition, it’s also important for you all to learn the differences between real fur and faux fur to make sure that you’re definitely going for the cruelty-free option. Below is a great post by Lush and the Humane Society International to help you all spot the difference between real fur and faux fur.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BbNDFm2l-r9/

To sign the petition, click here.

Please do sign and share the post to help put an end to real fur being sold in Britain! ♥

Forever Against Animal Testing

Hello everyone!

Happy Sunday – I hope you all had a lovely weekend. ☺

Some of you may have already seen the Forever Against Animal Testing campaign that Cruelty Free International and The Body Shop have created to put an end to cosmetics testing on animals on a global scale.

Ban Animal Testing

Animal testing remains a problem around the world, with over 80% of countries still having no laws against testing
in cosmetic products and ingredients. Despite the fact that reliable alternatives are available, millions of animals
continue to suffer. Cruelty Free International estimates that more than 500,000 animals are used worldwide in
cosmetics testing each year.

The Body Shop and Cruelty Free International’s new campaign Forever Against Animal Testing is calling
for a ban on animal testing in cosmetic products and ingredients, everywhere and forever, through
a United Nations International Convention. It is the most ambitious campaign ever against animal testing
in cosmetics, hoping to achieve 8 million signatures. We want to stop all cosmetic animal testing of ingredients
and products, everywhere and forever.

Quick review

Those of you that follow me on my social media accounts will have seen that I have posted and shared the petition to try and get more people involved and I’d like to thank the lovely people from the The Body Shop PR team for sending me a Special Edition Piñita Colada Body Butter with a custom Forever Against Animal Testing sticker on there. I’ve been using the Special Edition Piñita Colada Body Butter for the past few days and I am loving it! It smells like a fresh bottle of tropical juice (lol). The body butter is quite a lightweight cream that works well with the summer with the intense weather that we’ve been having here lately. It’s definitely worth getting before they all go! ☺

As someone who is passionate about the Cruelty-free movement, I feel that it’s important to not only support campaigns like this but to also support the brands that are actively making more and more cruelty-free and vegan products like The Body Shop. Together, we can inspire change in the simplest of ways, so please help us end cosmetic testing on animals by signing the Forever Against Animal Testing petition by Cruelty Free International & The Body Shop. ♥

Don’t forget to share this post and spread the word! To sign the petition click here! (The petition ends in 2018)

– Sonam

P.S: Click here for more skincare posts. 

YuLin Festival

Hi everyone,

A couple of days ago I was sent a link to sign the petition to end the YuLin festival and it got me thinking about what happened last year. Unfortunately, most people found out about the disturbing YuLin festival almost a week before the actual event from celebrities like Ricky Gervais and the #StopYuLin2015 trend. There was a moment of outrage that was enough to gain awareness across the world, but did not manage to sway the political forces to end the festival.

In this situation you cannot help but feel completely helpless the most that people felt that they could practically do last year was create a hastag, make it trend and sign a petition – which feels as though that could be the outcome this year. Now I don’t want to divert attention from the real problem at hand but one thing that I would say was completely unfair was the selective outrage over the public slaughter of dogs when we are fully aware that animals are slaughtered for meat everyday across the world albeit inside buildings. Not only are we completely sheltered from the horrors that animals face but we willingly choose not acknowledge it and save ourselves from being scarred by the graphic images. But sometimes that is exactly what we need! In our everyday lives we have become so accustomed to seeing meat neatly packaged in a plastic tray that we completely detach the idea of meat from a living creature altogether.

After I had signed the petition I decided to do some research into the dog meat festival itself to find out more about how the tradition had come about. I managed to find out that the tradition of eating dog meat has existed in the Far East for approximately 400-500 years. In the city of YuLin, dog meat is usually eaten with lychee during the summer to cool the body from the scorching heat (lychee juice could have done the job by itself really). Strangely enough the actual festival itself is not part of an age old tradition, but rather has formed in recent years to mark the Summer Solstice. The very fact that there are tensions between the people of Yulin over this festival makes clear that there is no real need for this. The Chinese government themselves have acknowledged the problems that can follow if they allow the festival to continue, not just for the animals but also for their own political structure and reputation. (Whether the Chinese government intervenes and acts on this global outrage is another thing.) What makes it worse is that many of the dogs are stolen pets and are found on the street which just seems all the more unreasonable to allow the theft of pets and the promotion of unhygienic dog meat all for the sake of a festival.

In China there are many animal rights advocates that have been forming networks in order to collectively bring awareness, and justice, for animals which for the Chinese government could be threatening if they choose to sweep the concerns of festival under the rug. The Duo Duo project, an organization dedicated to ending the dog and cat meat trade, is one of organizations that are at the forefront of bringing more awareness about the festival with the hope that they can make political changes and end the festival. The executive director of the Duo Duo project, Andrea Gung,  is in fact the one that has set up the petition that I was sent.

There are currently over 2 million signatures on the Change.org petition to the YuLin City Governor, Mr Chen Wu, and we need just over 900,000 signatures; so I have embedded the petition below for you all to sign, please do sign and share!

Let’s hope that this year the Yulin Festival is more than just a hashtag.

Faux labels

Faux fur has increasingly been dominating the fashion scene, yet the concerns over the production of real fur is not as outdated of a problem as we like to think. Although we are led to believe that most of the major brands and retailers that typically sell faux fur are ethical and just, this is unfortunately not the case, in fact recently the problem of what I like to call ‘faux labels’ has been highlighted on many instances in the past few months. This particular problem is not a simple case of buy from this company and avoid that company due to the fact that the labelling itself cannot be trusted and this requires further investigation into the nature of the companies selling the supposed faux fur products.

Both the Daily Mail and The Sun uncovered the mislabelling on fur products in the past month from major companies like ASOS, TK Maxx, House of Fraser and Sports Direct. In the U.K there are laws that state that any products with fur has to be clearly labelled as to whether or not origin of the fur is from an animal, if this label is not available on the product then it is mostly likely real fur and is also breaking consumer laws. When you look at this problem on a more grander scale it seems to be quite a complex mess, as we in the U.K buy faux fur that looks and feels like real fur but most of our faux fur is imported from countries like China where there is no legislation to govern the production process. In China and across Asia many street animals are slaughtered, mislabelled and sold as faux fur in the U.K and there is not much questioning of the production behind the supposed faux fur due to the cheap availability of it.The price of fur with partial animal origin does not guarantee the living conditions of an animal neither does it justify a ‘humane’ method of obtaining fur.

I personally have difficulties telling the difference between real fur and fake fur so I looked up the different methods online and one that seemed to be (kind of) effective was to pick at strands of the fur and then to burn it to see if it burns like plastic, meaning it’s faux, or if it burns like hair, meaning it’s real. But of course you can’t walk around a store with a lighter and burn the products before you buy it so the safest way would be to do your own research into which companies genuinely do sell faux fur and which companies have a bad reputation of not sticking to their word.

I really do urge you all to become proactive in learning more about the companies that really do sell faux fur and the companies that are misleading. It won’t take as long as you think, there are many different resources available online like the Peta, Humane Society International, Cruelty Free International and Care2 websites as well as many blogs.